File under: Sentimentality

I had the best night last night that I have had for a long time. I didn’t do anything exciting. I didn’t even go out. I’m so tired lately and my energy is really low. I had no thought for writing. Baby was in bed and the other half on the late shift at work. So what did I do?

I sorted out the memento files. Having not done this for a while, there’s various bits and bobs laying around in various parts of the house… no matter how much I try and keep things tidy, there just never seems to be enough time to do everything. Stuff just gets dumped wherever there’s a spare space… papers, documents, cards, tickets from places we’ve been. You name it, we’ve got it… somewhere.

Some pages from my daughter's album

Some pages from my daughter’s album


My daughter's album

My daughter’s album

When my first daughter was born, I decided to keep a memento album. And over the years, it’s filled up with beautiful things that we’ve done together, things she’s made, special cards, and places we’ve gone. To me, this is like an alternative photo album. Photos are lovely, but these keepsakes have a different feel, and invoke different memories. So she has her very own album. I also have an album for me and my partner, and I have a special box that I keep all of my beautiful, special cards in that I get from my wonderful family every year – Birthdays, Christmases, Mother’s day cards, Valentine’s day cards… and so on. For some reason I’ve not yet got a memento album for my boy, but I have kept stuff for him too. Some has got lost along the way *sniffles sadly* but I’ve salvaged what I can.

The Boys' special things, currently in *nice* envelopes

The Boys’ special things, currently in *nice* envelopes

So, glass of wine to the side, t.v on in the background, cat strolling in and out… and all these memories piled around me. All the bits that hadn’t been sorted out, I put into relevant piles: Daughter/baby/adults. Then started putting them into the right file/box/envelope. This took a long time to do… and of course, made longer by the fact that I just had to look through each of the files as I was sorting them out. Looking back at all of those memories. All the things my babies have done – oh, how they’re growing up! – All the things my partner and I have done together, and all the beautiful cards they’ve given me over the past few years.

My special cards

My special cards


My Cards

My Cards

This was such a cathartic thing for me. I felt blissful, at peace, content. The memory files made me smile and laugh. Putting the outstanding things away felt like an act of love. I was totally in the moment, enjoying seeing my family and my life in this way.

It also made me think and re-evaluate: Looking at the cards and the sentiments in them from my children (okay, so my partner wrote them, but wrote them beautifully ‘from’ the children, and my daughter loves writing her name and kisses) made me feel sad for all the times lately I’ve been stressed and/or tired, and have snapped at them. Seeing the love in those cards, written out in that way, just made me sit and think about my own behaviour with them, my own attitude, and what they actually deserve from me. They certainly don’t deserve me snarling at them just because I’m a Grumpy Groo!

I think this activity was exactly what I needed, at exactly this time. To relax, to be filled with love, to be reminded, and to think about our relationship. It was cathartic for me, and just perfect.

And as a bonus, the house is (slightly) tidier, and bits and bobs are all where they should be… in one loving place.

I hope one day the children will enjoy looking at the files, seeing the things that they’ve done, and that we have done, and that it gives them some happy reference of their childhood. I guess I’m just a sentimentalist at heart!

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  1. They will really appreciate your saving and preparing these remembrances. It is so easy for these things to get lost or tossed. The big events in our lives we can recall, but it is the little things that might be forgotten. They are so special.

    • Yep, I even have things like the first feather my daughter picked up on a lake walk, her first day report from nursery… lol! But these are things photos can’t capture 🙂

  2. Charming blog. Thanks for this sweet sharing. How fine it is to reminisce with the actual objects to enhance the memories. Warm wishes, Tasha

    • Thanks Tasha! Yes, there is something about this that is different from photographs. i must admit, we have so many pics of the kids, I just haven’t kept up with printing them, so they’re only on the computers at the mo. But the mementos are something unique, that I hope the children will treasure in years to come 🙂

  3. What a sweet, loving way to spend an evening.

  4. Beautiful thoughts and ideas, Heidi. My father said he took and kept pictures of me and my brother from day one to when we were three years old. When I moved out, I took those pictures with me. I swear I’ll forever remain grateful to him and momma for preserving such a memorable thing and so much more! I absolutely love what you have done. I believe when they are old enough they will appreciate and give you a big hug for this parental prospect.

    • Aww, thank you Uzoma! And how wonderful of your father, to keep memories that you wouldn’t have memories of yourself, being too young at that time 🙂

  5. What a wonderful idea! I can see how much love and peace they would fill you with especially as you can share with your children now and when they’re much older. Thank you for sharing this, it has made me think about doing something similar. I have diaries but they don’t have quite the same sentimental ring to them. Blessings to you 🙂

    • Aw, thank you, glad it’s given you an idea 🙂 It is a really wonderful thing, to get these out from time to time just have a look through them.


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