Monday, October 25, 2010

nostalgia and the act of making a baby book

I’m trying to catch up (slowly) on my posting chronologically. But I’m skipping ahead with this one because I need some advice.

I’m fully in the nesting mode and one of my projects is to attack the baby book – or rather three-year book. I’ve asked my husband to make a video of River’s first three years and it’s my job to make the book. I’m going to go with one of those digital photo books you can order, to make the task easier.

I last left off on photo and video sorting in December 2009, so last night I went through the second half of December and the first two months of this year. Reliving those moments filled me with an incredible sense of nostalgia. Yes, this is the same little guy I know and love. But he is so different, in such a short span of time. It amazes and astounds me. And it makes me feel so lucky to have experienced and participated in those moments.

Part of my sentimentality may be due to pregnancy-induced hormones. But even Mark seemed nostalgic upon watching River make star-shaped ginger-bread cookies with him last holiday season.

River stood upon on a chair and watched papa intensely. He wore his cotton diaper and a mustard-yellow shirt.

“He was chunkier then,” Mark commented, referring to the thick thighs he still had then. Now he is so lean.

“Say three,” Mark said in the video, counting the cookies they had made.

“Four,” River said.

“Ok, that’s close enough,” Mark replied.

Ten months later, it’s hard to even fathom River messing up a number. Now Mark recites the first line of a nursery rhyme and River finishes it.

The fact that we neglect to realize the magnitude of these changes, even in such a short time span, makes me want to record them for River even more. I’m excited about this project and hope I make something that will be memorable.

A couple of questions:
1. Can anyone recommend a good online baby book maker? Right now, I’m planning to use one of the major sites, like Snapfish. That would limit me to photos, some text, and the monthly letters I’ve written to River. But if there is a site that also has pages for growth charts, firsts, etc. that would be pretty cool.

2. How many pages can you have in one of those digital photo books before it gets too big? Thirty-six months is a lot of ground to cover.

3. How many copies would you make? I’m thinking I should have one on the shelf for River and one for safe-keeping in a firebox or other safe place. Should I make copies for the grandparents? Anyone else?

4. What should I do with the things that can’t be put into a digital book – the first lock of cut hair, the baby hat worn at the hospital, a trinket from my baby shower, other little mementos like that?

5. Any suggestions of video-making software appropriate for an inexperienced person?

1 comment:

Lainey Wright said...

We made a book through Walgreens for Christmas of last year as gifts for the grandparents & were very happy with how it turned out, although we included photos primarily & minimal text. I was hoping to do one for us on his 1st birthday but never got around to it. I am hoping the book is still on the website & I can simply add to it. As for the little bits & pieces like caps & 1st haircuts, we have a small cloth box that sits on top of our bedroom bookshelf for X's special things. I found I was putting lots of things in the 1st year, but few items as time has gone on.

Please let us know if you're happy with Snapfish, or if you find something you prefer to use. I would like to get something printed at some pt...