As part of "operation declutter the basement", we decided that it was high time to digitize our physical photo collection. Digital photos are not only more convenient to display and share with other family members, but they take up a lot less space! Those of you who have previously had access to our personal photo albums, please note that these photos have moved. You'll now need to get secret passwords etc. to see photos for everything except stuff on the blog. Well, and temporarily gingerbread / sailing photos, though we plan to remove those as well.
Scanning the photos was very interesting, and not only because it inspired many trips down memory lane! I was often in fits of giggles over the truly terrible photos we found it necessary to not only keep, but take the time to carefully place in a photo album. Clearly economics played a role, because very often I not only put one bad picture in my album, I put the duplicate (and triplicate!) below and beside it as well. I carefully captioned some with useful information like "this is a bear", in between randomly throwing pictures spanning several decades into a single album. In no apparent order! The next project is clearly to label some of these a little more coherently, but I will definitely require some assistance to figure out who/what/where/when/why on some of them.
I didn't always use my photo albums to store photos either. There was a whole collection of postcards - both blank and otherwise. Autumn leaves were apparently quite exciting when I was little, as was a large maple leaf infected by blight that I collected when I was eight. "Chicken pox!" says the caption. And clearly the pinnacle of my abbreviated scrapbooking career - a pair of totally unfamiliar but obviously beloved (and very dirty) socks. "Ewwwww!" said Elizabeth.
Apparently we stored about 1200 photos in our 22 albums. This represents most of the photos Brendan and I ever took up until the late nineties - and a few beyond that, as most of our wedding photos in 2001 were taken on old fashioned film. I also scanned my entire baby book, not that I am planning to dispose of THAT, but it's nice to think that I now have a backup in case the house implodes or something.
For comparison, we're approaching 30k photos taken on our camera since we purchased it two and a half years ago, and nearly 5500 photos in just over two years on my phone. In 2009, we kept and posted about 1500 photos to the blog. In 2010 and 2011, we had about 2600. I think it's safe to say that we are keeping more than double the number of pictures we had in the entire previous decade or two every single year!
I participated in an advent exchange for the very first time this year. A huge thank you to Amy for organizing it!
It was super nerve wracking deciding what to put into the box that I sent out, especially when my family kept eating the fudge I made.
Receiving my own parcel totally made my Christmas though - Elizabeth was pretty excited because she got to help Auntie Janice unwrap hers and then she received one of "her own". Have I mentioned this kid is addicted to mail? Parcels take things to a whole 'nother level, apparently.
I barely laid eyes on the ornaments before she carried them off to decorate the tree some more. I did talk her into giving them back long enough to photograph, but it took some discussion! She also loved her butterfly mask. Pretty sweet package, n'est ce pas?
Thank you so much Kait - lovely to meet you this way!
Elizabeth has been trying to help us come up with a name for her brother. At first these consisted of the usual suspects: Baby, Dolly, etc... Once we worked over this hump we came to such gems as Beth and Elizabeth. We then moved on to a whole new class of names: Baby who can't even drink from a sippy cup, Baby who can't do anything, Baby who... you get the idea. After some discussions on how names are forever and no she wouldn't really like it if we had named her something like that we started to develop some more "usual" names. Fierce and Belgium being two of our favourites. Somewhere in there we also had some fits of distress over not calling her sibling this or that with this or that changing more frequently than the bibs on her "babies". Brendan and I seem to be much better at coming up with girl names. Oh well Fierce Belgium does have a certain something to it.
The 12th day of the 12th month of 2012 is the last day for when all the calendar numbers will be the same for 88 years.
Since I likely won't be around to see the next time this happens, I figured I should do *something* to mark this date. Not having a ton of additional energy, I opted to participate in an hourly photo challenge. I took my pictures at 12 past the hour, more or less... Of course, I decided to do this before realizing that I'd be in a meeting for a good chunk of the morning! Music class was rather tricky as well since the teachers strangely don't have a built in time for picture taking scheduled into each class...
I posted my "official" pictures on twitter but there were a few extras taken over the course of the day that you get to see here.
8:12 am Wakey wakey. Also Elizabeth thought it was so funny that I was taking a picture of her waking up that she insisted on taking another one with Mommy too while making "bunny ears".
9:12 am My breakfast table - it takes us a while to get going in the mornings... Note the light dusting of snow outside. The tulips were a present from my Auntie Mary.
10:12 am It was not the most thrilling meeting I've ever participated in, but it was productive
11:12 am Just getting into the car to head home
12:12 pm This is my Grandpa B's old clock. Okay, so technically I adjusted the time as it is not currently running, but that's because it has an unfortunate habit of randomly striking 14. Or 23. Which we'd rather not hear in the middle of the night... One of these days I will take it to be repaired.
1:12 pm Elizabeth was all ready to go swimming at Grandma and Grandpa J's when she spied a bunch of mini candy canes waiting to be placed on Grandma's tree. So she put a few on in her swimsuit!
2:12 pm Elizabeth and I arrived nearly an hour before the other cousins, but because we had to leave for music we opted to swim right away. Elizabeth has not been in the water much this fall and it really showed as she clung to me like a petrified monkey, refusing to get her head wet or let go of my hands despite the life jacket. However, as soon as Erika arrived and started demonstrating her ability to swim all by herself, Elizabeth IMMEDIATELY let go of my hands and started happily swimming around in her life jacket after Erika. Apparently Erika has great powers of peer pressure.
3:12 pm It's tradition to drink hot chocolate and eat cookies while we wait for our hair to dry after swimming.
4:12 pm Music class - we're following the Music for Young Children Sunrise class. It involves multiple finger puppets, colouring (and sometimes glue / scissors), and many stickers. There is also actual music learning involved - it's a pretty amazing program. I hear Elizabeth will be giving a recital sometime in February.
5:12 pm After music we always go to the library to pick up any requests and drop off books that are due. Elizabeth was super excited to read her latest books by the light of the Christmas tree.
6:12 pm Lighting the peace candle in the advent wreath. For dessert we had internet inspired "Christmas trees" - basically ice cream cones slathered in chocolate sauce, rolled in coconut and m&m's stuck on top. It was rather messy but Elizabeth highly approved.
7:12 pm We had a fire as a special treat before bed.
Another birthday, another animal-inspired wrapping job :) The best part is that it's a craft that Elizabeth is keen to give away (our walls are otherwise rather full of "art"!)
Xander wanted to help me make Karen's raspberry flavoured black forest cake, so I gave him a spatula to lick. He doesn't quite have the eye-mouth coordination to do so by himself yet... Wish I had a video of him sticking out his tongue into empty air while spreading cream on his forehead.
Elizabeth was in raptures over having Swiss Chalet (delivered at home, no less).
Just for fun I've also put some photos we took of the various animal wrappings earlier this fall, since I didn't post them yet!