Today, living in this digital age, we are able to capture life's moments instantly. As a mom, I wish I had more pictures of my oldest daughter. When she was little, we only had the flip phones which weren't able to take photos. However, by the time my youngest was born, smartphones were the new norm and carrying a camera around was so yesterday!! I found myself taking photos of my kids and family constantly! I have a plethura of pics detailing my children eating, sleeping, laughing, playing, taking baths, watching TV, etc. We all have these photos!! But...what about during these other five moments....
1. TEMPER TANTRUMS
Yes, this is a very stressful moment. Possibly even a moment you don't really want to claim your child. However, it is one of those teachable moments to embrace, cherish, and record as a forever keepsake. My youngest was notorious for ending up in timeout, usually for not following directions. Timeout was a specific tile in the living room. She was "that kid" who insisted on pushing every limit available. Instead of standing on the tile within the 4 lines, she would place her feet on the edges. Many times I would find myself resisting the urge to laugh when I needed to be serious. Yet I loved her determination, tenacity, and wit. So I would tell her to turn around and face the other direction to avoid seeking attention...truth be known, this was my way of taking a photo of her without her knowledge. Hahaha One other moment was during the dog's dinnertime. I don't know how on earth my daughter developed a liking for dog food, but she would run as fast as the dogs when preparing their bowls. Keeping her out of the dog food was as much effort as the dogs. She would get incredibly sad and make all attempts to eat their food. Yes...I agree...yuck!! But...it is a memory I will cherish. The photo below is her holding the bowl hoping she will get some dog food.
Ohhhh the countless pasta necklaces I've received and the fabulous letters made from cheerios that have been on the fridge. I'm sure you relate!! But once time has passed...what does a mom do??? You can't keep it forever, right?? Yet you don't want to hurt your child's feelings. Welllll...whenever my daughter would bring a new "masterpiece" home, that one would replace the current art on the refrigerator. And then I would photograph the artwork that is taken off the refrigerator and place it in a keepsake box tucked in my closet, until memory was no longer present with my daughter. That day would eventually arrive and when she wasn't around, I would throw them out, usually when I went to the grocery store. No way was I taking a chance of her finding it buried in the trash. But the artwork is permanently archived and forever archived with my folder of photographs! I have made several "Picasso" scrapbook layouts and mini albums showcasing all her hard work and creativity! Below is a picture of my oldest fingerpainting. She is 19 now. Beside that photo is one of her watercolor paintings when she was 4 years old.
3. Clothes that don't fit
Before donating or passing along that favorite shirt, dress, or nightgown...take a picture of your child's favorite outfits. Or if you are willing to forego the garment, cut a piece for a future quilt, shadow box, or even apply the fabric to a scrapbook page. I mentioned in my bio that we lost my youngest when she was 5 years old. Thank goodness I kept many of these favorites because I indeed had 3 quilts made. Every piece of fabric has a story and is a wonderful embellishment for our albums or quilts.
4. At the doctor
Ok ya'll...am I the only one that HATES taking my kids to the doctor?? Ya'll...my hands would sweat, my heart would race, and my mouth would dry out every time I had to take them for checkups. I hated giving them shots and most of all, the finger pricks. Nonetheless...it's one of those many moments that can not be avoided. However, there were visits to the dentist and orthodontist that were more tolerable and braces were a favored milestone than those nasty shots! And as much as my daughter hated me hovering a bit and yes I asserted my photography skills and played paparazzi over the doctor, I captured and archived that moment!! It was a one timer opportunity and I didn't hold back!!
5. The messes around the house
I'm one of those people who can't tolerate large amounts of clutter. Everything in the house has a designated spot. I have tried very hard to model my keen sense of organization and so far...it's still a work of progress. However, the shoes and socks always by the couch, the half empty bottle of water on the end table, the school books sitting at the dining room table, the unmade bed, the pile of laundry, the toys in front of the TV...have I made you cringe yet???? CAPTURE THESE!! These are the true moments and definitions of our family. And then make a "About ____" scrapbook page. Their favorite drink, food, book, toy, outfit, etc. Also, take a moment to embrace the imperfections around the house. They really mark the represent life. When my youngest passed, I would've given anything to have her toys disarrayed around the house and even step on a plastic Barbie shoe in the middle of night...dang those hurt!!! But more importantly, these moments are temporary and today my oldest is in the college. I cherish every dirty dish, load of laundry, and sometimes...and I say sometimes messy bathroom because one day she will be tending to her own house and her own family.