Since I was a child, my mother always took pictures of my sister and I, it was her way of capturing the moment... Once we immigrated to Canada (24 years ago), we never took the many picture albums she kept of us -due to their volume-, instead she stored them in hopes that we will eventually bring them over. Unfortunately, the storage location did not provide the perfect conditions, and most of our photo memories were destroyed by high humidity... We were only able to rescue a handful of pictures that now we treasure dearly.
My Sister and I -circa 1980 in Baños, Ecuador-
As I became a mother, the idea of keeping track of my kids lives became a priority, however we opted for keeping digital files that were carefully labelled; we only printed a few pictures to display. When the kids started to attend school, the amount of pictures started to rapidly increase, and living in an apartment limits the space for displaying prints, so we started looking for other ways to keep our kids memories, so CDs, DVDs, hard drives and USBs became the new norm for storage.
When my daughter was in grade 1, one of her projects was to put together a small presentation of the ABCs using photos and pictures. I love crafts -a trait my mother instilled on us-, so we created a small album with a mini layout for every letter of the alphabet. Needless to say, it was a sensation in her class, and it turn on a light bulb in my brain... Slowly i started to play with my kids pictures, and prints were being framed or decoupaged to canvases.
Last year we took a trip back to my homeland, Ecuador. It was the first time the kids met my family and saw where I came from, so keeping memories of the trip was a priority. Once we came back, my daughter asked if i could print the 3000++ pictures of the trip, so she could go back and relive the vacation. I decided then that we needed to find a way to put names to faces and document the many places we had visited, so they could remember (as Spanish is not their first language), so we looked at scrapbooking and Project Life as the perfect option for the task at hand.
One of my first scrapbooking layouts
At the same time, I started to look at blogs, websites and YouTube videos on scrapbooking; needless to say i was fascinated with the art and feeling behind each page i saw, and then I found Heidi Swapp's tragic story of her son's death... her kid was only two years older than my son!! Their story touched my heart, but a sentence she used became cemented in my brain, "Capture Life, Document Life, and Display your photos". From then on, I have fallen in love with this art...
Each page i create (scrapbook and/or Project Life) fills my heart with appreciation for the beautiful life we live, adds sense to my faith, and safeguards memories for years to come... Many would think that i lost many years of scrapbooking opportunities (as my kids are teeenagers now), but I think that God had a better plan for me, and I respected his timing... So be prepared to see my projects and details (remember that scrapbooking is personal and unique, and that is where its beauty rests upon).