Friday, 25 January 2013

preserving your kids memories


I had to think of another title for this post as I didn't want people to get turned away at reading the word "scrapbooking".  I totally get the connotations that the word is associated with. 

I am a scrapbooker from way-back. I'm talking old-school. Think early nineties. When I was still in primary school. I kept scrapbooks of stuff from school, camps I went on and places I visited. I still have them to this day. I cherish them.

I still enjoy scrapbooking things to this day, but I'm not your traditional scrapbooker who follows 12x12 layouts or one who purchases coordinating, seasonal kits. Nope. Not me. I'm a closet hoarder of anything paper-related which I like to cut, paste, staple and tape to make into my own embellishments. It's much more personal and unique than anything you could ever get in the shops.

I have made albums of our overseas trips which are like little pieces of artwork in book-form. They are great reminders of the adventures we've been on and a real treat to look through. But that's a whole other post for another time.

I want my kidlets to enjoy looking back on all the things they've seen, achieved, done and experienced. So last year, my son and I sat down and started a scrapbook filled with things that he's done. Mostly places we've been over the school holidays. He enjoys craft time with me as it's a way for us to bond and the scrapbook will serve as a great reminder of the adventures we've had together.

Scrapbooking can be an expensive habit, but it needn't be. Follow this simple little guide and you'll have a handy kit at the ready to record your children's' adventures too.


Handy supplies
My suggestion is to create a little scrapbook kit for the kids to have as their own. That way, they won't be touching (or losing) your supplies and will be more inclined to be proud of it. Grab an old shoebox and let the kids go crazy decoupaging it with some magazine cutouts or stickers. Use alphabet stickers to label it 'John's Scrapbooking Supplies Kit'. Then once it's finished, fill it with the following supplies. 

  • scrapbook - this doesn't need to be anything fancy. It can be an exercise book, ring-bound notebook or a school-type scrapbook. You're only limited by your imagination. Try Typo for some cute options.
  • scissors - get a pair that your kids can use comfortably. Faber-Castell do a great pair of kiddie scissors that are safe and easy for little hands to use
  • glue stick - make sure to use a quality glue stick like UHU, otherwise you risk having things fall out of the scrapbook over time
  • double sided tape or foam - some things are easier to stick down with double sided tape or foam. You can find some inexpensive tape in shops such as Kaisercraft
  • pens - encourage your kids to write a few words to go with each entry. This is great in the case of my 7 year old who hates writing. Pick up some cheap and cheerful coloured pens from Smiggle or Target
  • stickers - I'm yet to meet a kid who doesn't love sticking stickers to everything. Get them a few rolls of washi tape or some simple sticker sheets to embellish their pages. Typo is great for this.


Tips

  • Collect lots of maps, brochures, menus, entry tickets/stubs, postcards, souvenir coins (you know from those penny machines) and any other memorabilia from places you visit
  • Take heaps of photos and get your kids to select a couple to include on each page. Print them on your home printer or head to your local photo lab to have them printed for you
  • Have your kids make a list of things from the trip they remember such as "fave animal of the day", "top 5 things to do at X", "highlight of the day" and include their handwritten notes where possible (get them to write on a separate piece of paper first if they're not confident writing straight into their scrapbook)
  • Try to get the kids to record in their scrapbook as soon as possible after the event so that things are not lost or forgotten 
  • Use leftover brochures or printed materials to cut up and decorate the pages. The kids can make a collage or just use single images as stickers or embellishments
  • Use double-sided foam tape or dots to stick bulkier and non-flat things such as the souvenir coins to the pages
  • For younger kids you can even collect leaves to stick in with their photos (they should be pressed flat and allowed to dry before being stuck into scrapbooks). Over time they can look at all the different types, colours and shapes of leaves they've collected from all the different places they've been.
  • Make sure to include the date on the pages somewhere so that they can remember when they had their adventures.

Now let them have some fun with all their supplies and watch as they create their own memories.

Note: we recently had the pleasure of visiting Phillip Island to write a review for  Little Melbourne. The photos in this post are from my kiddo's scrapbook from that trip. If you're interested, you can read our review over here.

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