Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Retirement Album

I was asked by a friend to help put together a retirement tribute album for the woman who has been the Health Coordinator for our school district. She was the official representative to a parent committee I served on for a number of years and she worked with many of the parents in our community to promote healthy choices for our children. As is often the case when you ask for stories or tributes to be sent in before the event, there were not many people who actually got their tributes written and the emails sent. So we worked out a way to have the album prepared and ready for the retirement party brunch tomorrow which will be attended by many parents who worked on this committee.

I chose a Creative Memories landscape style (12 x 10) album - 8 x 8 seemed too small and 12 x 12 too bulky! This size was available for a limited time but I had some left in my inventory. We used a decorative paper pack called "Vintage" and a Milestones album kit, also in Vintage, which has lots of photo mats, journaling blocks and decorative 4 x 6 papers.

For the people in who sent their messages in advance, we were able to print the messages on the Vintage patterned paper or a matching parchment paper and arrange them in the book (the messages are covered in these photos). The paper pack we used was sized for the older version of the Creative Memories 12 inch albums which had pages slightly less than 12 inches wide due to the "jeeping" strip that reinforces the page edges. We trimmed these to 12 x 10 to "wallpaper" about half of the pages and use the remaining strips to decorate the opposite pages.

It really makes things so much simpler when you work with a coordinated set of papers. The book looked great with just the two packs of CM paper but I thought I could add a bit more style with some Cricut cuts. I chose various cuts from the Storybook cartridge and filled a mat with images. I cut these images in several colors to add as accents on the pages. The page at the center of the right side above that is just a background paper is waiting for a printed poem that one of the guests will be bringing tomorrow.

I did not put the the page protectors on the pages yet, but I can add them after the messages are completed. When people arrive at the brunch they will have a chance to write a few lines on one of the journal mats or in a blank area on any of the pages. I will have tabs on the pages that have empty spaces and make sure that all of the lined mats are used first.

I added the Storybook cuts on various pages to give a more finished look and I have a folder with lots of extras that can be added on the spot if there are any "blank" areas after everyone signs the book. Some of the mats would be suitable for photos and we may try to have a few photos taken at the event and have them printed to add to the book later.

For the cover page, I welded the words "Thank you" and the name together using the Cursive 101 cartridge - this cartridge is wonderful for welding! The leafy branches are from Storybook once again.

I am sure that by the end of the brunch this book will be full of messages and it will be a lovely memento for Kathy to take home and read through.

(If you want to see the pages at a larger size, just click on the photos. Here's a little quiz for you - how many Storybook cuts did I add to the album?)

One more note - our online classes have been going well so far - thanks to those who have participated! We have set up some more "Getting Started" classes for next week and will be adding new classes soon. Just click the link at the top right of this page to go to the teaching blog for class details.


  1. It is a great album! I am sure she will love it! It will probably make her cry!

  2. oh my goodness. kathy will cherish this album for yrs to come and so will her family. this is a beautiful gift. i may have to use this idea for an upcoming retirement in our family. what a wonderful gift.


  3. What a beautiful and thoughtful gift. This will be a cherished memory for her. Great job, Diane, as usual.


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