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Friday, May 29, 2009

I Don't Scrapbook...

It's not that I do not like the art of scrapbooking. I find it to be a very intriguing, creative outlet of storytelling. Those who have the ability to take printed papers, stickers, borders, letters, and pictures to tell a story to help others feel like they attended events are truly talented. However, I do not possess that talent. I have all the necessary supplies to try to create the masterpieces that could be known as "baby books." If you were to look at the two albums that we call "baby books" for my two children, you would think that they were still infants - twins maybe. I have only gotten to the parts in them where we have announced the arrival of our two blessings.

It's not that I don't have pictures. I have many pictures that show that my children are indeed eight and nine years old. I have more pictures of their younger years taken via the disposable camera, which were taken to the local photo printer and stuffed into picture boxes or generic albums for the sake of having them. I also have quite a few recent photos of my children taken digitally, which are loaded into my computers. I haven't done much with these pictures until now. I figured the photos would always be there for me whenever I wanted to go and look at them again. This last week I was looking through many of the pictures and remembering stages in my daughters' lives.

I am sorry to say that there are some years with not very many no pictures. We were just living life. I was often asked by family members about new pictures and always replied, "We don't have any new ones." I have always thought that pictures were for showing others what your family is like at its best (you know-matching outfits, well-groomed, all smiling). I have sometimes felt that my family is not "picture worthy" because we don't always look (or could be made to look) perfect. And, there are parts of my life that I did not want others to see, or even remember myself. I missed those pictures this week. I found myself wanting pictures of those years.

I am surprisingly discovering that pictures are not always meant to be portraits of perfect people. Pictures are documentation of the fact that we are living our lives. It's not about how we look. It is about how we are feeling and relating to the other people. The activity we are doing is a representation of that moment in time.

I was reminded by another blogger just recently that one day there will be a time when I will not be able to take pictures (perfect or otherwise) of my family members. I will only have my memories and the pictures that I have already taken during our lives together. I have also realized that some of the best pictures we have taken - especially most recently- have been those when we were just enjoying life together rather than "making a picture worthy scene."

This is also the reason I started writing this blog. There are some things that I need to remember. One day I will be glad that I documented my "ordinary life." I have realized that there are some pictures of events I wish I could have now because it is part of my story, even if I did not want to remember it at the time it happened. I am going to try to put these stories together into small posts throughout the summer to "fill in my blanks."

And, the bonus part of it being a blog is that I don't have to worry about which color paper to use, how the border should be placed, whether to use pinking or scallop scissors, if I have enough tape dots, whether my handwriting is neat enough or not, or if I have made any major cropping errors.


Favors With Love said...

Great story Lori! I love pictures. I am a big fan of photography and was very active in that as a hobby until I had kids. At that point I somehow lost touch with that hobby, until recently. I have started carrying my camera around again. And re-kindled that love of taking photos. Snap away!

Hope you and your family are doing okay. I think about you alot. And remember you in my prayers.

Pamm said...

I'm the same way!!! I always say that I'm a scrapbooker in theory- which means I own the tools and photos but I've never completed an album. I have a few random pages done but that is it. But that doesn't stop me from taking pictures. Your recent photos have been great- keep it up!

Anonymous said...

Lori, your insights continue to amaze me. I am in awe of your ability to put into words some of the thoughts I know so many have had and haven't known how to say. It is such a pleasure for me to learn more about you and your family through this blog. I know we are sisters, but it is so easy to skim the surface of life. You are an amazing woman and mother. These posts are just an outlet for me and others to see what God is truly doing in your life, and I am so proud of you. Keep up the writing. I know so many will be blessed through you, including me.

I love you! Lisa