Friday, December 30, 2011

Her Very Own Book

With Christmas over, this means one thing: I can finally post about some of the presents I made my family without them getting the surprise ruined!

I had a goal to include at least one homemade gift per person this year, I didn't quite get to everybody, but still had plenty of Pinterest inspiration to go round! First up, a few months ago I had written about Baby Shower gift ideas and really enjoyed this one in which you make a personalized book for baby. Here is the original post.
My niece, Ella, is well beyond recognizing her mom and dad at age 2 1/2, but she does love reading books, so I tweaked the idea a bit and took advantage of all of the sites that offer reasonably priced photo books.

I stumbled onto mixbook.com and loved having the option of making a hardcover book. Christmas pricing specials didn't hurt either! I decided to write a story about all of the exciting things Ella did or learned this year including helping in the kitchen, riding a tricycle and becoming a big sister. I didn't think to take any photos of the actual book so these images are of the interactive preview mode on mixbook.com. Hence the page turned down on this cover image!
The templates were so easy to use, drag and drop all the way! They are also very flexible to allow you to create your own layout or change the amount of text vs. pictures. After scouring my own and my sister's hard drive and saving umpteen photos to a flash drive (avoiding telling her exactly what I needed them for to allow them to be just as surprised), I had enough to create quite a story. Ella received a play kitchen from Santa this year (and everyone loaded her up on toy food and kitchen accessories! I found this adorable felt and wood pita pocket set on Amazon), so I found the page below to be fitting.
It ended up being about 20 pages long, and we could also personalize the back with a message. I tried to include a photo of most everyone in Ella's life - parents, aunts and uncles and grandparents to keep her family close! Shipping was quick, I was a bit nervous considering I did not finish this project until a couple weeks before Christmas. It arrived several days before it said it would which eased my stress levels for sure! Nothing like waiting til the last minute.
When Ella opened the gift I think there might have been some confusion at first when she saw her own face staring back at her, but she quickly sat on her daddy's lap and it was read aloud. I hope this is a gift she enjoys pulling out and re-reading all year!
 Ella is also sporting the Bucky Badger hat we bought her when we went up to Madison for a football game the other month - Rose Bowl baby!

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