To answer a couple questions...I did use Blurb. It did take quite a bit of time to arrange the pictures on the pages the way I wanted them. I got faster as I went, though, and I think it took an average of 1 or 2 minutes per page (which for me is MUCH faster than scrapbooking or even insterting the printed pictures into albums and writing on the side). It is much cheaper also. This year I had a coupon. Last year I paid full price. I took the number of pictures I had in the book and figured out how much it would have cost to print the pictures individually and it was more than a full price book. Granted, most of the pictures in my book are smaller than a 4x6.
As far as quality goes, I am satisfied. I would give it 4 out of 5 stars. The colors are right on and the pages are thick enough to feel substantial. The binding is holding up so far, but I am being careful with it...not letting my young children hold it on their own.
I like that I can save the file and print copies of the book for my children if they want one when they get older (if the company is still around of course).
Mostly, I just like that this method of family journaling is working for me. I can keep up with it. I have a little system of organizing my photos where I know which photo folders I have blogged and which still need to be done. Scrapbooking...not so much. I started an album when Thomas was a baby and still haven't finished his first year. I realized that scrapbooking wasn't for me halfway through that year, so I started using photo albums that you just slip the pictures into the plastic and write a bit on the side. I stayed pretty well caught up with that, but it was always a huge chore to order the pictures and sort them. Also, I forgot so much in the time between taking the pictures and printing them that I couldn't remember the stories. Blogging solves a lot of those problems for me (if I don't fall too behind).
It is quite a project to edit the book if you have an entire year to do, but if you do it a bit at a time throughout the year it seems much more manageable. I would work on it for a while in the evening and then turn to Jackson and proudly announce that I had finished 10 scrapbook pages in 20 minutes. He didn't really get it, but I felt like I had accomplished something :)
P.S. I'll try to take some pictures of the book so you can see what it looks like...I just haven't taken the time yet.