By Katelyn Showalter

Katelyn, our guest DIY writer, and her daughter smile at the camera
Katelyn Showalter is the DIY blogger behind The Show Gals brand.

Birthdays are a huge deal in this house and birthday season is upon us! I have to admit, it’s just as fun for me as it is for my kids! Even if we keep things simple I get so excited to create a day all about them! I love hearing what theme ideas they have and making them come to life! Last year my oldest requested a moonlight party and it may have been my favorite yet!

This year I really wanted to be intentional  when it comes to gifts, and waste. For kiddos that can’t read, cards often get wasted too. And let’s be honest, they just wanna skip to the present anyway! Cards often get thrown away and it always feels like such shame knowing how much time and money guests spend picking them out!

So much time and effort are put into birthdays. I want my girls to remember them forever so I thought combining that thought with the leftover card problem was the perfect solution! That’s how I came up with the birthday yearbook! The perfect card alternative that is a sweet keepsake to have forever!

Every year I put together a photo book of the highlights throughout the kids’ year! So leaving a few blank pages in the back for guests to sign, or leaving a little note to the birthday girl! It’s like a personal yearbook for each year of your kids’ lives signed by the most important people who were a part of it!

Be sure to leave the book out on the table where everyone can see it and has access to it! I made a little sign explaining what to do so there wasn’t any confusion. It’s also fun for guests to flip through and see how much your kiddo has grown in the last year! Personalizing it adds an extra special touch and if your kids are big enough to help, have them get involved!

DIY photo year back inside page with U R so loved

If you want to encourage guests to bring gifts that also reduce waste here are a few ideas….

Gifts that reduce waste and mean a lot!

  • Experience gifts (a trip to the nail salon, swimming, or a giftcard to the ice cream shop!)
  • Memberships – These are the BEST gifts in my opinion! The gift that keeps on giving and creates memories that last a life time
  • A gift wrapped in cloth or some other reusable material
  • A donation to a charity of your choice or savings bond!

Let’s stay focused and get into what you will need for this project!

What you’ll need:

  • Stickers or vinyl
  • Sequins

How to:

  1. Order your photo book! I started with my daughter’s birthday party picture from last year and added highlights throughout her year leading up to her 2nd birthday! Make sure to leave the last two pages blank for people to sign!
  1. Add stickers / Vinyl – I used my cutting machine to cut vinyl for this part but stickers would work just as well! I used them for the title of the book and for the blank pages where guests will sign.
  1. Add your finishing touches!- It’s the little details that always make a project feel special so add what makes you happy! I added sequins to the front of the book and heart stickers to the signing page!
A box of sequins and sparkles next to the DIY photo yearbook.

And there you have it! A special keepsake that you and your kids have to look back on for years to come!

About the author

The show gals… That’s Katelyn – our guest author – and her two little girls, Macy and Ruby, who live together with dad, Tyler, in Las Vegas. Hairstylist turned housewife and mom, Katelyn is busy bringing her girls up as independent, confident – and creative! Check out her blog for tons more child-friendly crafts, baking and adventure stories for you on her blog and Instagram channel.

More from this author…

Create a Summer Bucket List With the Kids

How to Make an Easy DIY Instant Print Place Set

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Ceramic Photo Coasters: 6 Step DIY Gift Tutorial

Candles in a Coconut or Lemon Shell – Step by Step DIY

How to Create a DIY Photo Explosion Box: Step-by-Step Tutorial


Hiya, I’m Maud. I’m an English girl who's moved to Berlin - because who wouldn’t fall in love with a country which has words like ‘Kummerspeck’ hidden around every corner... I love traveling and finding out the quirks of each country - and what better way to remember them than on a postcard?

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