Monday, January 16, 2012

Documenting Firsts and Keeping Projects

After reading a post from a sweet friend of mine who is a self-proclaimed over-documenter when it comes to her children's "firsts", it got me to thinking. I wonder why I don't do that. And I don't mean I don't over-document their life happenings, I mean I don't document ANY of their life happenings. I don't even feel bad about it.

When I had Caleb, someone gave me a cute little calendar full of stickers that I could use to write down his first pediatrician appointment, his first smile, his first time rolling over, his first tooth. When I forgot to write down the first doctor's appointment, I didn't really think anything of it. The calendar just sat there, and every time something happened, I just never put it in that calendar.
I just don't know why. In my head I know that his first tooth came in around 4 months, MUCH sooner than Sarah and Gabriel's. I know that he started crawling in the summer because Josh was home on summer break and I wasn't there (I was very sad...I was working at the time). I know he took some of his first steps on his first birthday in front of all kinds of people at his party!

The same is true for Sarah and Gabriel. I have some of their firsts in my head, but I have nothing written down.

I think it's cute and great when moms take time to write it all down. Perhaps it's especially fun to compare different children in the house, finding out when the first child rolled over compared to the others? Or maybe that's why I never did it? I really have no idea!

Only one of my children have a picture with the doctor who delivered them, and that's Gabriel. Maybe it took me three times to figure out it might be nice to have that picture!

The same is true when it comes to what I keep that the kids make or work on at school. For example, each Sunday the kids bring home something that they've worked on in their Sunday school class or during extended session/junior worship. I can't think of a time when I've kept it. Can you imagine how much like a hoarder I would be if I kept everything from 4 kids? So it has to REALLY stand out to me.

Like this picture Caleb made in art class in December. I must of been having a mom moment, because I thought it was just the coolest thing. He loves art, and when I saw this, I could see why!

Or his letter to Santa. I love his creative sentences and his handwriting.

These were done this school year, in 1st grade, and I'm not sure if I've kept much else. I have one or two things that were really neat from his preschool days and kindergarten days, but that's about it. The same is true for Sarah and Gabriel. For me to keep it, it has to be something I know they've done completely on their own, and it needs to be something worth keeping.

I know all moms are different. Some who read this might just shake their head or gasp! :) But I know that I am comfortable with how I'm doing things, it would be different I guess if I felt horrible about it.

So if you're a mom, are you an over-documenter, an average documenter, or a non-documenter? I'd really like to hear from just one non-documenter! :) And how do you decide which papers/projects to keep that your kids work on?


Anonymous said...

Oh Chrissy, Chrissy, I bet you can guess what kind of mom I am! ;) I am your soul sister, therefore, a non-documenter!

I didn't start out this way. I journaled in a little calendar for Ashton for about 6 months. Then I never wrote in it again. The other two never had a chance!!

We have 1 small storage tub downstairs that contains everything I wish to keep; paintings, letters, craft projects, etc. I'm not a sentimental person by nature, so I really have to think before I throw stuff away.

My mom was a SEVERE non-documenter! :) We have 1 photo album for all three of us, no artwork, no writings, nothing, nada! I actually wish I could see some of the stuff I made growing that's probably the main reason why I keep at least a little bit of my kids' stuff!!

Shelley said...

I'm not much in to documenting everything. Most important things are etched in my memory. I have kept a few papers and drawings from preschool, kindergarten and 1st grade. I am very glad to know I am not alone in the non-documenting side.

accesskas27 said...

I documented with joseph, a little less with sam and none with jonathan..... lol... and you know what when I think back and I realize my mom doesn't have anything for me telling me when I got my first tooth, when I started crawling or walking... I could care I guess i'm assuming my kids will be the same way... and if they aren't .. I hope they forgive me... :-)

I do keep school work, but not everything, just a few pieces here and there and I keep downsizing the "keep" pile because it is just too overwhelming and like you said with "4" kids... if we kept everything we would be on the show hoarders eventually!! :-)

Wendy said...

I documented EVERYTHING with Hunter and FORCE myself to remember to write down stuff with Jarod. I pull out Hunter's scrapbook to see if I need to do something for Jarod so there won't be any chance of one saying, "I love him more than me" yadda yadda yadda...its probably because I have a sibling who claims our mom loves one sibling over the other...oh well, regardless, I'm sure it will happen one day or later!

Chrissy said...

Wendy...see, that's a good reason not to document anything for any kid! Ha! And I guess I can't speak for others, but I would say that if you have a sibling that feels that way, it's not because your mom wrote down your first tooth and not his.

Causey Fam said...


Actually, you document quite a bit in pictures. You have pictures of special events, outing, b-days, holidays, ect...and with your blog it is another way to document the happenings in life!

We all choose to keep different things. I have a tub for each child to put keepsakes in. This ranges from artwork to schoolwork and everything in between. One tub each though. I keep a tray on top of the fridge to put papers in and then (actually now) I need to go through it and decide if I still think the item is keep worthy, then it will go into their tub. This tub will contain all items from now until graduation (or that is the plan).

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