Friday, July 15, 2011

Operation: Baby Book

**These templates are now available for purchase in my store, scroll to the bottom of this post to purchase! Also, I have a tutorial on how to use them in Photoshop (HERE), and another tutorial on how to use them in GIMP (HERE), a totally free downloadable program similar to Photoshop.**

When I was pregnant with Harvey, I found this fun and funny pregnancy journal: The Belly Book. I adored it. 

This book includes pages for each doctor's visit, a monthly spot for cravings/aversions, ultrasound pictures, one page for each week with a spot for a picture and journaling, pages for why and how we chose his name, the labor and delivery story, and MUCH more.

Plus it does it all with a humorous twist:
  • Is the baby a girl? a boy? or a boxer?
  • What is my current disposition? sunshine and happiness? partly sunny with a chance of showers? hormonal hurricane?
  • I'm starting to feel like.... a fertility goddess? Humpty Dumpty? 
I thoroughly enjoyed filling it out. And no - I didn't take a belly pic EVERY week. In fact, some weeks are empty. Or sometimes I added a pic of other stuff going on; the house we just purchased, or Justin and I in our Halloween costumes. Sometimes I filled in the prompts, and other times I crossed them out and used the lines for journaling about other things.

However, when I started looking for a baby book... they all included things my Belly Book already took care of: how and why we chose his name, baby shower momentos, how we prepared for the baby, a place for his birth announcement, hand/foot prints, etc. And I didn't want a duplicate book...

So, I decided I would "make my own." And well, anyone with kids knows that it's much easier said than done to keep up with something like that when it's just a fill-in-the-blank-er. I kind of feel like I dropped the ball because I didn't even have a plan.

However. This blog saved my butt. I DID take monthly photos of the kid and posted them with a list of all the current fun/embarrassing milestones he was going through. Plus, I got lucky and made it onto a couple of creative teams which forced encouraged me to keep up with scrapbooking pictures of the kid.

Here's what I've done with the milestone lists: (I used the fonts Century Schoolbook and Century Gothic, as well as Ali Edwards Hand Drawn Brushes for the 'you'.)

 Pin It

I'm not sure what happened around 3 months, but I didn't have a list on my blog. Maybe I'll try to compile one from photos and videos, but maybe not. My plan is to insert these pages on the opposite side of his "montly photoshoot layouts" in his scrapbook. The colors match his outfits, or the paper I used, etc. 

I flipped through a couple of baby books at Walmart, and I found a few ideas that my belly book didn't include:
  • a family tree
  • immunization fill-in-the-blank page
  • what things cost (when he was born)
  • a letter from Mom / Dad / Grandparents
Besides my monthly stat pages, the regular story-told scrapbook pages and the above list, am I missing anything? What else should go in a Baby Book? What systems have you put in place for recording your children's memories?

These pages are now available for purchase in the following bundles:


  1. With Daniel and Nathan I bought a baby book and proceeded to fill in the blanks, glue in a few pictures, etc. It felt like a chore, but one I really felt obligated to do. With Matthew I bought a book, filled in a couple of blanks, and then never got back to it. Poor kid has next to nothing in his book. So Kev has suggested I try doing a book for the new baby on the computer and then sending it off to get it printed when it's all done. I've found some templates for two page layouts that I like and plan to use one for each month. I really like your monthly list things and think I will incorporate that into my templates. I also plan to do a family tree page (don't know how I'm going to do that yet-inspire me, oh scrapbooky one!), ultrasound pages, hospital pages with hand and feet prints, immunizations, baby shower, a page for birth and blessing certificates (digital, not the real ones) and I'm always a fan of the "teeth" page. I'm toying with the idea of including a growth chart of some kind as well. We'll see if I can actually make all this happen. I have grand plans to have a bunch of it done by the time baby comes so I can just drop in pictures and text, but since I'm still only on the cover and time is a wasting, I may not make it...

  2. super cute milestone lists!! I absolutely love them.

  3. How did you make those? Did you use a specific software? They are wonderful. I would like to do something similar but I am not sure where to start other than a Word document.

  4. Julia,

    I actually did mine in Photoshop. I created one layer for the big number, and another layer for the list/text. I'm not sure about using Word. You could probably get a similar effect, but you wouldn't have as much creative control. (And I still have 2007, so you might be able to do more with a newer version). Any other program that uses "layers" would work. Sorry, I'm not much help, but if you have Photoshop and have questions, I'd be more than happy to help!

  5. I love this font - the font of your numbers. Any chance you remember what it is and are willing to reveal?

  6. Would you mind sending the photo shop file you used??

  7. this is such a creative idea. If you do decide to share the psd file I would love to use it as well. I am just learning the program and can only use templates as I haven't figured out how to create them myself.

  8. This is such a great idea! If you do decided to share the psd file I would also love to use it!

  9. Very creative, I recently purchased Photoshop and would love to know how you did this,

  10. I would love the template as well.

  11. I LOVE this idea! Please let us know when the template is available for purchase!

  12. I am so excited and can't wait for you to post the template..please email me when it is done at

  13. I was wondering what company you used to print your book?

    1. As of right now, I've just printed the pages separately on photo paper, stuffed them into sheet protectors and added them to his post-bound scrapbook. I'm toying with the idea of having a bound book printed from Shutterfly, but I like that he can touch/look through his book right now. I don't mind because of the sheet protectors, but I know if I had a bound book printed I wouldn't let him touch it for at least a couple more years.

      So far, I've been please with pages both printed at Costco and Scrapping Simply. Hope that helps! :)

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. sorry I forgot to leave my email address. So I deleted it so I could re-enter my post.
      Hi Tiff,
      I would love to know how you did the pages, I have been looking into making a book like this for my son (9 months) and when I saw yours I fell in love. Do you have a template that you would be willing to share? I would love to incorporate this into the book I am making for my son so he could have a glimpse of himself when he was a baby. Thank you for sharing and being so creative. Love it!!

  14. In my search for monthly milestone prompts for my daughters second year I came across this post. I love the simplicity of adding thoughts to the prompt. YOU... I have created a memory keepstyle book style called Alphabitty Moments for recording the every day moments of childhood but I still want something sort of chronilogical to use on my blog so our family blog book will have these milestones preserved. Thanks for the inspiration!!!

  15. In my search for monthly milestone prompts for my daughters second year I came across this post. I love the simplicity of adding thoughts to the prompt. YOU... I have created a memory keepstyle book style called Alphabitty Moments for recording the every day moments of childhood but I still want something sort of chronilogical to use on my blog so our family blog book will have these milestones preserved. Thanks for the inspiration!!!

  16. I purchased these recently to use to create (or rather, start!) my 16 month old daughter's baby book. I would love to see you offer templates for 13-24 months as well! :)

  17. I just had to come back to check to see if you happened to have the 2nd year files available. I would love to buy them if you ever decide to do them, so my album will look cohesive. LOVE them! :)

  18. Well I did it!!!! I finished my daughter's 2nd year book based on your inspirational post. I still made her an Alphabity Moments book, but I kept that one simpler since I was able to get 224 photos into her 'You are loved.' book based on your idea. I titled it 'You are loved." because at the end of each month I added the line, you are loved! after all the other milestones and memories we wanted to remember about our daughter's second year.

    THANK YOU SO MUCH for giving me the prompt I needed to launch this project AND complete it.

    Here's a link to the post where I wrote about the project:

    Blessings from BearCountry!


  19. Great post! I'm sure lots of moms want to be able to record their baby's milestones like this. And you did a wonderful job of designing each page too! I love it. I started a project that would help motivate moms to do projects like this!

    Our website, FamilyTales helps to capture your baby's life story with just 1 minute a day.

    We'll send out "smart" questions that are time-specific and prompts that aims to help parents document your child's special moments, e.g. "What your baby's current footwear look like?" or "What was the last thing your baby did that surprised you?"

    We are looking for moms and dads to try out FamilyTales and give us honest feedback about the process.
    You can check it out at:

  20. I would love the files if you share them. I use this for the first month and then wanted to do the second month a little different so I wrote milestones and cut them in scalloped circles. I have been searching for the rest and was delighted to find this. of course my next page is 3 months but I will wing it and just try to re create it like I did with the first month.

    1. The files are for sale... you can find them here: Just be sure you have a program like Photoshop that will open/edit them. :)

  21. Hello,

    I absolutely love this idea. Loved it so much I added it to an article I wrote about "Creative Ways To Document Baby’s First Year". Keep up the good work.

    Should you want to post the article on your social media here is the link

    Have a great week,



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