Pocket Scrapbooking with Project Life

Cultivate a good life and record it.



good life – by wayne mitchell

Part of cultivating a good life is taking the time to create memories with those you love and to support each other in time of need, knowing you can always get through difficult times together.

We are all busy. No matter who we are, where we live, or what we do, we are busy. We fill our lives with things that are important to us: family, work, service, entertainment, and other competing priorities. My parents taught me that while all of those things are important, what really matters is that we build relationships with those we love and are there for each other in times of need.

I have looked back over my life. I have had a great life. What do I remember? What really sticks out in my mind? I think of all the time I spent with my family and friends: vacations, work, service, sporting events, sitting around talking, and simply spending time together. Those are the good times of life. The times we cherish and never want to forget. I also think of the trials I have gone through. How did I get through them? Who was there for me? When I think of all these memories, good times and bad, I think of family and friends who were always there to support me. Like….

The trial my wife and I went through when we were told we couldn’t have kids. Many of you have had or are currently having this trial. It is difficult for someone who has desired to have a family their entire life and then be told that they can’t. Questions arise: Why us? Why is it seemingly so easy for everyone else when it is so difficult for us? What should we do? We went through doctors visits, fertility specialists, procedures, injections, etc. only to receive the dreaded phone call after each procedure that it didn’t work. Each time, year after year, our family and friends were there to support us. They encouraged us, prayed for us, and were always there during the difficult times. They helped us see other options. We looked into adoption.

And here we are years later. This week is the 6th birthday of our beautiful little girl Molly.

I could never have imagined how wonderful life would be with Molly. She has brought so much joy and happiness into our lives. Every minute of this trial was worth it. We would have never gotten through it without the love and support of those closest to us.

Two years ago this June I was in a waiting room at a hospital in Maryland waiting for the arrival of our second adopted baby, Jack. I will never forget hearing the alarms and his room number called out over the speakers as doctors and nurses ran to his room. I ran down the hallway to see my our little boy being hauled out of the room, his body completely blue. Complications at birth led to seizures and other issues. He was transferred to the NICU. We were told that he had brain damage and we would have to wait and see how this affected him. The diagnosis was not good.

My wife and my mom sat in the NICU with him for practically 24 hours a day–holding him, making sure every need was met. The nurses were like angels sent from heaven. They watched over him like he was their own. The doctors paid special attention to our boy and met with us daily. I received emails from family, friends, co-workers, and business acquaintances from around the world, all of whom were praying and fasting for our little boy. The support was nothing short of amazing. After a month, we were able to bring him home.

Look at him now. The doctors are amazed. They can’t believe how well he is doing. He is a happy, energetic, beautiful little boy whom we love dearly.

Find the time to do what matters most. Be there for those you love. We won’t look back and remember the dishes that didn’t get done or the emails that were left unanswered. At the end of the day, part of cultivating a good life is building relationships with those we love and being there for them in times of need. I will forever be grateful for those people who were there for my family in time of need and hope I will be there for them in their time of need.


Note from Becky

I still remember walking by the American Crafts booth at the trade shows some 10-15 years ago. Wayne Mitchell, VP at American Crafts, would grab whatever ball point pen I had in my hand at the time and replace it with one of the AC pens. He would encourage me to use those instead. And you know what? I did. In all the years of creative lettering and sketches, I often turned to my favorite AC pens.

Fast forward to 2012 when we at Becky Higgins entered into an agreement with American Crafts. This relationship has resulted in our products becoming much more widely available across the world, which of course has helped to expand our brand. I am grateful for the Mitchells and their role in our company – and in this whole industry for that matter. And I’m grateful to Wayne for opening his heart to my readers, so many who I know will be touched by what he has shared.


17 Responses

  1. Betty Roark says:

    This is a beautiful post. Everything he said is so true. Thanks for sharing it.

  2. Kate says:

    Good post
    Reminds us to be grateful. I teared up at the story of the birth of his son
    How lucky I am to be healthy and have 2 healthy cherubs!
    Thanks for the reminder :)

  3. Your children are beautiful! I enjoyed reading your post, so much truth in what you have written. Thanks so much for sharing. :)

    Mary from NH

  4. SANDIE GREENE says:

    I remember many of those times that Wayne has mentioned and his family is truly the most supportive group of humans I know…They are not only there for their immediate family but all those who know them…Wayne is a very giving, loving man because his parents taught him to be that way as are all his brothers and sisters…I feel it’s privilege to know all the Mitchell’s…they also taught me to love scrap booking and to share your memories with it as well as sharing your time and talents…Thank you to “ALL” that are connected to Amercan Crafts…….IT’S MORE THAN A SCRAP BOOKING COMPANY…it’s a family who cares!!

  5. MaryLyn says:

    Touching and honest. Thank you for sharing your story and reminding all of us how important it is to be there for each other. Love the photos!

  6. Sally says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this with us all, so touching

  7. RuthAnn says:

    Thanks for sharing Wayne. What a beautiful family you have! Thanks for reminding us what is really important.

  8. jenni harker says:

    Wayne and his family truly are remarkable people.

  9. Monica says:

    Your kids are so blessed to have you as their Dad!!

  10. Joy Shimabukuro says:

    I’ve known Wayne for quite a number of years and he is truly a wonderful person. He and his family have a great company and are just the best! I remember when you announced that you would be offering Project Life through American Crafts, I emailed Wayne to tell him Congrats and that it was the most exciting news for the craft industry in years!
    But yes, my relationship with Wayne started with pens, too!
    Thank you, Wayne, for sharing such a personal and inspiring part of your life. And Thank you Becky, for choosing such a good company to work with.

  11. Rhonda Steed says:

    Wonderful!!! Thank you for sharing!!!

  12. Aunt Midge says:

    You guys make me so proud of you!!

  13. Brandee says:

    Thank you for this beautiful post. I needed this reminder.

  14. Karen Brooks says:

    Thank you for sharing your story. Your children are beautiful gifts from God. Best wishes to your family!

  15. Megan says:

    Very touching. Thank for sharing and this great reminder about what really matters.

  16. AJ says:

    Wonderful, wonderful message of positivity and thankfulness–it made my day!