Friday, January 21, 2011

perserving the family's history

I am so grateful for the digital realm which has enabled us to take memories snapped and hidden deep within the memory card below the lens of our cameras, protecting them until such a time when all become placed into an archival system, safely preserved for telling the story of our "family's history".

I'm always working madly away trying to tell "our story", loving producing edited and final scrapbook copies I've been able to "birth". Whether by hand or by virtual media businesses, this is personally a lofty and a very worthy goal for me.

In the last two months, when I was alerted there was a package ready for me to scoop up from our local post office, and as the postmistress plopped the slim cardboard protective boxes in my hands, my heart naturally beat faster and swelled greatly because I knew, oh yes - I KNEW they contained my book babies, my special printed book versions created via online venues.

I'll go a wee step further by humbly exclaiming although I'm a diehard scrapbooker, I'll shout it out about how deeply grateful I am for this secondary scrapbooking option as opposed to trying to create many same individual books, several in fact, for attempting to gift all of our children when special occasions warrant multiple copies.

I am such a firm believer on being able to provide our future generations, our very own progeny, with visible and tangible ways to familiarize themselves with the "living history" of their family tree members, those who have breathed and walked this land before them.
This is where the "who", "what", "where" and "how" questions offer answers for our family's generations to come. 
These methods of preserving our family's story today will make it a cinch for others to come after us, realizing and getting a feel for not only who their ancestors were, but to be able to identify what their passions were during their lifetimes, or maybe how they walked their talk during their lives, plus did they find grace when they came together to "celebrate family". Or on the flip side - did they come together at all as a family, or did they grow to merely become related strangers?

At the present time, I believe telling our story is best accomplished by way of ensuring the preservation of our family's history NOW, while it is still unfolding, telling of those stories on  ordinary and the eventful times of our lives.

It comes to fruition and is realized when jotting down the words to form the story, and by expressing why such moments become cherished the way they are, also keeping the momentos and guarding precious photos for accompaniment. 

In these small things, if archived well for future preservation (acid and lignin free), when we eventually become "the roots" instead of our present day "foliage" of the family in generations to come, others can enjoy physically perusing the pages of our memories, and hopefully come to know and fully appreciate their family heritage. 

As they are perusing pages, each story but remains a mere part of the weaving in the spectacular to the mundane tapestries of our lives, all purposely tightly woven by loving hands. It's an incredible and tangible witness to behold, an eloquent pathway from story to story, as the years progress which we've trodden upon throughout the journey of our lives.

The end goal is to consider how we can not only display and preserve our tapestries, but also to keep alive those warm memories of loved ones near and far anytime we need to revisit there, all right at the tip of our fingers. This is where a photo book comes in handy for all.

Is it worth the effort?

Truth be told, I certainly can't speak for anyone else. I'm not entirely or exactly sure if all those gifted this year with the 16 various photo albums, (created just for them) feel as deeply as I do about this passionate topic of mine.

I do know when making each original copy, I never once saw them as "just a gift project" for me to feel led to create, they were often emotional walks found in the depths of memorable moments, even seconds in some instances, for those I was able to capture through the lens of my camera. 

It's definitely in those steady heartbeat rhythms while waltzing back into the past where I can freeze time forever if desired, and to savor those memories for as long as I wish. 

Even before hitting the completion buttons, they fast became perfect tangible keepsakes to sustain and ignite my own memories, of another time, of an event, all those now already found behind lurking sweetly in the past.

All the photos books I was able to create before the bold deadlines on the calendar for either gifting or shipping for gifts, became golden, keepsakes whereby we were able to purchase our own duplicate copies for safely placing them lovingly upon the family bookshelf, always visible and at hand for reviewing and remembering the together times and the events which evidently ushered in pivotal moments in our family's history for generations to have records of in years to come.
In keeping with the preservation of the family's history, and as a brand new year is upon us, I hope with all my heart to place a bug in your ear, asking all of my readers this important question. I'll just go ahead and throw this out there;

How are you preserving your family's history?

Where are your photos?

Have you begun to write your own personal stories, those worth passing along for another generation down the line?

Keep in mind baby steps are important to large tasks, perhaps only work on a small stack of photos each day, offering in total only a few days a week, until eventually your own "story" is completely documented and accomplished.

Here are two previous blog posts below you can click onto to read more about this passionate topic I'm imploring you to begin your own path to jumping on the bandwagon with me. Forgive me though, for I know I am filled with an overbearing enthusiasm, nevertheless always hoping it becomes contagious and your tapestry needles get into your hands in the weeks to come.