Layout | AE Tough Story Kit

Hi there, today I am showing a layout I created using the Project Life App and Ali Edwards' Tough Story Kit. This layout is another one about our trip to the beach, only this one allows space to document my son's incident with a dog bite that happened several hours after we left the beach. Here is my process video:

This is the layout I created in the App, by bringing the Story Kit digital cards into Dropbox and then dropping them into place in the App:

AE Tough Story Kit

Here is the completed layout:

AE Tough Story Kit

I made a conscious decision in creating this layout: notice that while the overall layout is about a traumatic event, I have purposefully used bright and hopeful photos to document. I obviously did not take photos while we were at the ER that night. Some people do that, and that is ok, but I was just trying to get through.  So when I thought about what photos to use, and how I wanted to approach this layout, I decided that I really wanted to convey hope and strength. I thought about what I wanted my son to take from this experience - I wanted him to be assured that he is strong and tough and that he can make it through some awful days. I also wanted him to be reminded that even though moments are tough, the whole day was not tough. There were some beautiful moments in that day, and here is proof of that.

AE Tough Story Kit

I also love using this larger photo of him prior to the incident because it shows his sweet face and I have every hope that those scars will heal. I am so thankful that incident did not take his smile or his sweet cheeks. I think I am also holding onto this boy, who now has faced fear and stood it down, but who also now has a few marks from that.

AE Tough Story Kit

I really love this card but visually it might be a little bit overwhelming. I decided to just add a few of those plastic strips and some hearts. The adhesive shows through on those, but it really is ok. A little imperfection actually lends a rough feel to that card and is consistent with the purpose of this layout.

AE Tough Story Kit

I love the chipboard stickers that come with the Story Kits each month. These two layered on top of each perfectly.

AE Tough Story Kit

On the opposite side of the page I wanted to document the recovery in some way, so I wrote in a voice that is after a few days and I included a photo that was taken a few days later. It was important to me to document his recovery because I want us to be able, in a few months and years, to look back and say, "Wow, look how well your injuries healed. Look how awesome you look compared to right after." 

AE Tough Story Kit

Just a little note about how I have used the Tough journaling cards on this layout: the physical Write This Moment card is actually 3x4 vertical. The Yes, This card is actually 4x6 horizontal. The Life in Progress card is 3x4 vertical. I have changed all of these from their original format and the reason I wanted to point that out is to encourage you, in the Project Life App, to try this with cards that you need to use in a different way. I admit it is harder to do this with Becky Higgins' Editions because the App will tell you which cards belong in which areas, but when using the AE cards you have a little bit more flexibility with that.

AE Tough Story Kit

Those flair badges are so awesome - I chose three to use on this layout and used those to establish the visual triangle around the page. I also layered them on top of a 1" silver rimmed office tag, which is such a classic Ali Edwards thing to do! Those plastic strips provide a great home base and a place to use the word strips.

AE Tough Story Kit

Now, I will admit that the digital elements will only go so far, and here you can see how I stretched the Strong word element further than it is designed to go. It is pixelated around the edges, as you can see, and this is part of the risk taking that comes with trying these elements in a different way. I used the Letterglow App to place these word elements on the photo, and some of them I lowered the opacity. I was trying to echo the perspective of the photo itself. Whether it works or not, I guess, is in the eye of the beholder, but my main point is to try and to not be afraid of how it will turn out. Nothing on this layout is perfect, but it tells a story about life that is very imperfect, so that in itself is consistent. Embrace that imperfection. 

I hope you enjoyed this beach series. We were only on the beach for a few hours, but so many stories came from that and I am thankful for the Project Life App, and thankful to Ali Edwards for the inspiring products and stories. I am also thankful to you, my dear readers and viewers, for following along with me on this journey. I hope you will be inspired to tell your stories too.

See you again tomorrow!

~Theresa