Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Scrapbook Page, Sort Of

by Tamara Passey

I tried to scrapbook for a while. I really did. I wasn't terrible at it. I could put together a page and the pictures looked pretty good. But I admit, rather nervously, that I didn't like it as much as thought I would. Or at least as much as some other friends did. So I've resorted to putting pictures in albums with protective covers and think that maybe one day either of my daughters might like to scrapbook - wouldn't that be nice? However, I still like to capture moments and record them if I can. I just have a writer's brain and not a photographer's brain. So my snapshots are poems. Fragments of moments I don't want to forget. Like the one I'm including at the end of this post. It may not mean much to anyone else, but at least I can show my daughter I was paying attention along the way. Are any of you good journalers? Scrapbookers? How much do you document of your children's lives?

Storm Watchers

We sat on the lattice-back patio chair
You and I
To watch a storm
Because in the desert, rain is a spectator sport
Water spattered on the rocks
Tapping rhythms
You sang the alphabet song
Somewhere around H-I-J-K
The thunder clapped directly above our heads
Like you had the fast-moving gray clouds for an audience
Your eyebrows snapped up like rubber bands
“What was that?” Your shock sent up a hand to cover your mouth.
“Thunder.” I explain.
You still scanned the yard and the soggy grass
Looking for a culprit
A gust of wind pushed the rain horizontal
And I knew our moment on the edge of the storm was over.
You clung to me with your four-year-old arms and legs as we scrambled inside.
We stood behind the glass door,
Watched our dusty patio chair get drenched
And laughed.


  1. I am a photographer, I've never been much of a journaler. I don't scrapbook though, I just save all my pictures online and on my computer, someday I'll make them into books, theres cool sites out there that will make them into books with a lot less elbow grease than scrapbooking.

  2. I always get gung-ho about scrapbooking until I realize how much work it actually is. Then I put it all away until I'm feeling adventerous again.

  3. Did someone say scrapbooking? I love it...when i get the time. The thing about scrapbooking is I have to be in a creative mood which usually means I'm creative enough to write too. So sometimes I use scrapbooking to boost my creativity before I write. I love your poem by the way. This where you would take a picture of your daughter sitting on the porch with you and scrapbook it with this poem. It's perfect!!

  4. I love writing and I love photography, and I love visual arts in general, so scrapbooking is just a beautiful combination of it all for me. The problem? I'm too much of an artist. I am lucky if I can get through one page in an hour! What I love, though, is the way that you can accent a photograph with just a few words and it captures the essence of a moment. It's not a long and involved explanation, just an image and a few fabulous words. I once read that if you want to know what your passion is, think of something you can do and completely lose track of time. For me, it's writing, reading, photography (or editing photographs on the computer) and scrapbooking.

    I would take your poem and run it down the left side of the page, with a close-up candid photograph of your little one on the right, maybe in black and white. Or even just a photo of the porch and the chair. Beautiful words, beautiful memories!

  5. Shutterfly is my new answer to my lack of a scrapbooking skill. Their photobook thingy lets me drag and drop photos, add text, and they supply the cute paper and print the whole thing and mail it to me, voila. I completely STINK at "real" scrapbooking. But journaling is a different story. Love it! Every Sunday afternoon we do our family journal and I take dictation of what my kids say happened to them this week (the answers almost always surprise me.) Then I take a few minutes and write my own impressions of the funny stuff they said or did in my own journal. Someday I hope to extract these for each of them and compile them individually. BUT...this poem of yours is FANTASTIC! What a lovely, lovely way to document the "moment." Sigh. So nice. Thank you for sharing your idea!

  6. I love the poem.

    I tried scrapbook. I have a bag on wheels full of stuff to scrapbook. I started a book for my daughter, I never got paste the baby shower. Oh well.



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