Thursday, September 12, 2013

Twenty Years

Thank you everyone for your prayers and concern, an update to my previous post, my father in law has been discharged from hospital after two and a half weeks. Thankfully his condition has improved, though he is still rather weak, and he has been able to have dialysis treatments three times a week, and we hope will regain his strength over time. It's so wonderful that my husband has six siblings and everyone is close by and rallies around to help. It is such a blessing to have!

Twenty Years
About two weeks ago, we brought all the stuff we had stored at a personal storage place while we were moving and renovating, back home. We don't have enough space in our new home to keep them all, and while sorting through all the boxes to try to cut down the stuff some more, we re-discovered all our keepsake boxes, with old scrapbooks, photos, journals, and more!

I had been planning to do a photo book for our coming Twentieth Anniversary (In December), so this was great!

I re-discovered (some forgotten) scrapbooks we kept of our first dates, letters, movie tickets, the scrapbook was named 'Couplehood' :)
another named 'Parenthood', full of articles we read, stuff we wrote, letters, cards, when we first became parents,
old 'pocket-style' photo display, I remember now those pockets were purchased from Ikea, pre-cursor to Project Life (!)
tonnes of old photos,
and so many keepsake books - baby books, my family, my first home, etc! (on the right) (on the left are my photobooks and Project Life albums) :)

Dh and I spent quite a lot of time reminiscing and wondering where the time went, how we have spent the last twenty years, thinking what did we each bring to each other in our marriage, what defines us and our family now, what meant the most, the good, the difficult times, how God is faithful, all the blessings, all our adventures, oh how do we begin to describe twenty years?

I was so inspred by Pink Ronnie's R&R Memoir Book - which she describes as her record of their journey together as a couple. One day I will pull all our letters, scrapbooks, photos, cards, and so on into a complete Memoir book, but for now I want to have a photobook of us through the years.

So I got started, and couldn't stop, and I have completed 23 pages!! It has been so rewarding (and tiring too), selecting photos for each year, scanning those pre-digital photos, reliving every year and so much memories! 

The first part of our Twentieth Anniversary photobook
Here is the first page - our absolute favourite page so far!
Yep that's yours truly, I must have been a happy kid!

Then the dating years, the wedding and the honeymoon




And thereafter a page for every of the twenty years so far - ready for time travel?




















What a journey! Isn't this really something?

So much to savour, so much to relive, enjoy, cringe, that is humbling, give thanks, praise God, treasure, reminisce, look back, look forward to... The process was rewarding as much as it was tough - which photos define us that year? What do I want to highight? There was so much possibilities. In the end I chose the simpler option of photos that show us as a couple, growing as a family, photos that highlight our relationship with each other, highlights of things we did or trips we took together. More personal stuff, triumphs and challenges were left out - this is after all, a photobook to celebrate making it to our twentieth year, to be shared with family and friends, no need to be too profound I think!

I have more pages planned, with themes like our homes, family and friends, what defines us as a couple, etc. And DH suggested a page on those hair and fashion trends (or disasters, what was I doing with helmet hair???) through the years, lol!

It was also interesting to note that in the pre-digital camera years, we only had photos of events, or trips, very few of anything else, what a pity! Even in the digital but pre-camera phone era, there was still a huge lack of any everyday photos. Mainly we had photos of the babies in those years, which are precious, but so much else is missed! Wish I thought about project life/week in the life/day in the life then! Way to go for the younger families who have everything going memory-keeping-wise now!

For the album, I broke out my dusty old bamboo tablet and doodled some frames, as I did not want this to look like my travel albums. Also, frames were needed as I knew I'd be choosing disparate, different looking photos from a particular year to put on the same page, so the frames will help unify them. Must say I'm quite pleased with how they turned out. Hand-drawn and a little whimsical, not too fussy and quite versatile.


Have put up the layout templates (like the one below) into two packs in the store. Hope they provide inspiration and a starting ground for a fun album for you too!


And here's a 12x12 template based on that first page for you to try. Clip your photos to the photo layers in the template. Have fun!

P.S. No PL nor Beijing layouts this month, had only been working on the anniversary book :P  Will catch up in October, hopefully!

20 comments:

  1. What a wonderful trip down memory lane! I love how you're putting your book together so far. Congrats on twenty years together :)

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    1. Thank you, Jen. It is a wonderful memory trip indeed!

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  2. What a fabulous project! Such wonderful memories - congratulations on 20 years!

    Did anyone ever mention peritoneal dialysis to your family? My Dad couldn't tolerate hemo dialysis - it exhausted him - but he was a candidate for peritoneal dialysis and it was a lifesaver for him. God bless your family.

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    1. Thanks Connie! Yes, we are still discussing with the doctors on the hemo vs peritoneal dialysis for the long term. We haven't heard any great testimony like your dad's on peri though, so this is really good to know, thank you!

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  3. You are such an inspiration, and those old pre-digital albums just prove that you have been born to scrap.

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    1. Yes, proven beyond a doubt. lol!

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  4. This is amazing! So fun to look through. Love all the changes and growth. Thanks for sharing your journey and thanks for the freebie. I LOVE your style, journaling and thoughts. Praising God with you my friend! I am always talking about your family focus with my daughter who just got married and loves to travel too and how you focused on travel with your boys instead of so much stuff. Live simply so you can simply live! Thanks!

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    1. Always so nice to hear from you, Rhadonda. You're right, as we looked back, what is so clear is how Good and Faithful is our God. Praise God! Congratulations to your daughter! We have not done everything right but God has been Gracious. But choosing to travel instead of stuff and other luxuries is something we have never regretted :)

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  5. Wow, what a wonderful album. I can't imagine how hard it must have been to narrow down to a small sampling of photos for each year. Congratulations!

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    1. Thanks Dolores! Mostly it was time-consuming going through the photos because I kept getting side-tracked into reminiscing and talking about this and that with dh :)

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  6. Oh, Yin! I love it so much! What a wonderful treasury for your family! I have often felt overwhelmed about scrapping our past -- especially those days before digital cameras. It has never occurred to me to approach it like this - with just one spread per year. GREAT IDEA! I also love how you did different shapes for each year. I am sure the hardest part is choosing the photos to include. I like how you said that this is not an all-inclusive memoir - just a photobook of your years together. I think I get the most overwhelmed when I think of my projects as the end-all and be-all of whatever I'm documenting. There will always be more to the story than what's on the page. I think you've done a terrific job!

    P.S. So thankful that your father-in-law is doing better. What a blessing to have a large connected family.

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    1. Hi Jenny, thank you! It's not easy to narrow down to one spread per year, but it does makes is so much more manageable and hence enjoyable, and 'completable'!

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  7. Loved seeing you and your family over the years. You haven't changed a bit. Glad to hear that your father-in-law is doing well.

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    1. Tink, so nice to hear from you! Oh I have changed a lot, you just didn't get to see me up close and personal, lol! Hope your mom is doing well too. God bless.

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  8. Hello Yin,
    I'm reading your blog for about three years and you've been a great inspiration for me since then. I really like your different but always simple styles an how the love to your family shines through in every photo. Thanks for sharing!
    Sydney

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    1. Thank you for your lovely words, these are the encouragements I need to keep on creating and sharing!

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  9. What a great and inspiring photobook. I feel like doing the same now! Your boys have grown up but you are still the same beautiful lady. Thank you for the free template.

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    1. Thanks Arthea for stopping by and for your lovely comments, you made me smile :) !

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  10. thanks for the free templates!!!

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  11. So gorgeous! thank you

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