My oldest came to town ... rented a Penske truck ,,, packed in the belongings ... swept up his south and west coast warm weather loving bride ... and headed off to begin their lives in Williston, North Dakota. We miss them already.
Before they left, I realized that they might have a few square inches of room in their rig.
Being as I have things I'm holding on to that can now be passed on to these married children of mine,
I dug around in the garage, found what I was after, pulled up the floor (height of comfort in my advancing, incredibly inflexible life), turned on my computer and started scanning. And scanning. And scanning.
You may notice two books. Yes, there are two. The large one holds everything from the first photo taken in the hospital and hospital wrist bands to birthday cards, baptism cards, school projects and that kind of thing.
The second book held photos. Eight years ago, I sort of updated all these books. Sort of. Some pages are more done than others and I decided not to have any feelings of guilt that they weren't up to date. Life is kind of like that. In my heart, I think I did the best I could. There were times of life that were a bit more challenging than others. Periods of time where the collection of treasures and treasured moments were scant. But, they will be able to tell you when they lost teeth, when they walked etc. I hope that one kiddo doesn't feel like another got more. The method of recording events changed over time, as did the saving of them. I'll share how I remembered many of these things in the next post. Because trust me, I never managed to even complete one of those cute little baby book things you buy with good intentions.
Each child also has a box. There were many years when the box was allowed to come out on their birthday and they could rifle through it. Each box holds an outfit and the hat they came home from the hospital in. Beyond that, they hold different things. This one for instance holds a beautiful caste of Blayde's hand. I should have noted what year it was done before I gave it back, but it is still the same hand today. If you lined up 5 of these, I'd pick his out in a heartbeat. Some boxes have envelopes of school work. In the streamlining process 8 years ago, I came up with a plan for saving the large treasured school work. The ones you can't get rid of because they are priceless, but at the same time I wasn't hauling a monstrous tote to Alaska filled with kindergarten art projects! I'll share that later this as well. It might save you a few feet of space depending on your family size.
This is the stack that I sent to Williston in the Penske truck. And saved on my computer, and external hard drive (one can never be too safe!), are the treasured pages that I intend to turn into a Shutterfly book. It will take less than an inch of space on my shelf and when I'm older and grayer and don't have energy to get up at 5:30 in the morning to race my sewing machine through totes of cloth, I can imagine that I will thoroughly enjoy paging through the memories with my cup of coffee.
This past week, while I have been quite absent on blogger, I have been very present at home. I've been on vacation all week and there have been days when I didn't leave the house. Blissful days like that. One of those days I spent a good six hours perched in front of that scanner/computer and worked my way down memory lane. Alyx and Anna both have their boxes and books returned to them. Brock's is done and sitting in a much downsized tote in the garage waiting to be delivered to him. Tia's isn't done yet. In all honesty, that one I am going back to work on before I scan. She was about 10 years old when I last put things together for her books. I need to do a few more years before I can call that one good.
Somewhere in the moving (and the storage of the kids' treasured favorite stuffed animal saga), three of the furry critters have disappeared. Brock and Anna still had theirs. I don't remember what happened to this nose. Maybe the kids do.
As my children now have growing families of their own, it is especially fun to share these with them. Does my baby look like I did? Did he cut teeth the same time as I did? Did we wave good bye at the same time? All those fun things that they can ask me, but I will never remember.
My brain is overfilled with so many delightful things that the memory bank can't quite pull out the small details that they may want to know. Perhaps they'll find the details ... somewhere in those nearly 300 pages I've scanned and saved so far!