Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Preserving Memories

I love pictures. My house is cluttered with framed pictures of the kids. I make sure and get professional pictures done regularly and I take an insane amount of pictures myself. I scrapbook most of them. I have books for each kid, for each year of their life. I truly believe life should be documented, and pictures are the best way to do that.

This week, I've been digging through old pictures. I started  when my grandma passed away. We wanted to have some pictures of her through the years to display at her funeral. I found almost 70 pictures of her in my quick search. Once I finished that project, I kept digging. My goal is to get them all scanned and saved to my hard drive, so I'll always have them. The poloroid pictures from the 70's have not withstood the test of time...they are cracked and faded. But I am so thankful to have them, even if the quality is not the greatest. Even better, my parents wrote on most of the pictures from my childhood so I've got a date, and sometimes even more details, to go with the pictures.

I admit, I've become a little obsessed with these pictures. While the little girls napped today, I spent an hour and a half scanning pictures, rather than cleaning house or folding laundry. It's simply amazing to me how much Lizzy looks like me. I always thought my kids looked like Kerzmans, but as I look at picture after picture of me as a baby and a toddler, there is no doubt in my mind Lizzy is my mini-me.

I also find it funny to look beyond the people in the pictures... the pop cans, the dishes, the carpet...they all bring back so many memories. Unfortunately, these are the things we usually try not to get in a picture. I'm guilty of cropping things like that out of the picture after the fact. No more. I will leave the Diet Coke cans in the picture, because who knows what they'll look like 30 years from now.

This picture is from my second birthday... my sister and I are blowing out the candles on my cake. I knew right away where we were. The orange table was a dead giveaway...we were in our pop-up camper. That picture brought back so many memories. Dad farmed and Mom was a stay-at-home-mom so before Jenn and I started school we used to take vacations in the winter. It made more sense to do that...summer was Dad's busy farming season but we didn't have livestock to worry about in the winter months, so it was a great time to take a vacation. So, we'd pack up the camper and the big brown LTD and head south. I celebrated my second birthday in Texas. I got a ballerina Barbie with a crown attached to her head. I remembered all this... by looking at this picture.

This picture said just "Slim Buttes", but I knew right away it was taken during our annual trip to the Buttes to cut down our Christmas tree. It cost a dollar to get a permit and you could cut down any tree you wanted. We dd this for years. I think I was in college before my parents bought a Christmas tree already cut. I remember collecting pinecones for Mom to decorate with, having snowball fights, and stopping at Reva store for a treat after chopping down what we thought was the perfect Christmas tree. These trees were never perfect...they were far from it in fact! But they had so much character.

Beside the album from the 70's, I found our wedding album. It's been 13 years since Brad and I got married, and I have to admit, I have not looked at our pictures much in those 13 years (and I've never watched the video). But today I did. I looked at them all, and scanned a bunch of them. I remembered how sick I was that day, how I probably should have been in the hospital, and how bad the weather was (we got married on December 27, 1996...in between blizzards). Still, our wedding was a ton of fun, and I've got the pictures to prove it!

There are more pictures, and more memories. Someday I will get all of those pictures scanned and preserved digitally, because it's true... a picture really is worth a thousand words.

No comments: