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Perfect Gift Quest: Kid-Authored Book

I just found out that one of my sisters does not play Monopoly at Safeway and I wonder if I ever knew her at all.

I mean, sure I've never won a big prize or anything, but I COULD.

Last year I won a $5 for groceries coupon. Five dollars! That was a sweet little perk. Granted if you put the time I spent trying to put the dang pieces in the right spot into an hourly rate, it would be like 7 cents an hour or something. And the fact that I never did go to customer service to cash it in is completely besides the point.

This last week in my Monopoly pieces I won a free 8x8 book code from Shutterfly. While that's fun, it's not really all that big of a deal as they frequently have codes for their little softbound books. In fact I just looked on and Shutterfly has a free 8x8 book right now for new customers.

But it got me thinking about what to do with that book.

It would be fun to just fill with random pictures, or pics from a recent trip, or maybe (if you were really organized) pics from birthdays/holidays from the previous year.

One year we came up with a pretty great idea.

And this is where I'm going to tell you that neither Shutterfly nor Safeway are paying me to talk about them. My life just really is that exciting where I'm writing a blog post about them for fun.

I had my two oldest (the others were too little/not born yet) help me come with a story together that they illustrated. It turned out adorable. We wrote 3 books total- one for each of their sets of grandparents. They came up with 3 different stories that starred their grandparents and themselves, of course.

Here's how we did it.

1) Came up with a general plot line. This took some negotiating as we all have opinions around here. It did help that we were making 3 books.

2) They told me the text while I typed it in a Word document.

3) When the story was all written I then split it up between the 20 pages included and copy and pasted it in Shutterfly.

4) The boys illustrated every other page- so one was drawn by the 4 yr old and the next was by the 6 yr old. The just drew them on printer paper.

5) I scanned the art but if I did it now I might just take a pic of it because somehow that seems a whole lot easier. Then I plopped them in the right spot in the book.

These turned out hilarious and adorable and I really wish I had printed off a set of each for us because they consumed my life for a short while.

We used them as a Christmas gift, but they'd be awesome birthday presents or Mother's/Father's Day gifts or just to do because "they grow up so fast!"

Huh. Maybe I should use that code to print one off of the books for us. They'd be a cute addition to the boy's Easter baskets.

Good thing I'm writing this.

#birthday #gifts #christmas


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