Saturday, May 25 2024 - 11:56 PM
Photo by Dreamstime


I tried and failed at scrapbooking. It’s not that I didn’t enjoy it and not that I didn’t buy all the supplies (yikes!), but I’m just not good at making time for it in my life. I also have three preschoolers that love nothing better than getting into the “fun” paper and scissors and stickers—OH MY!

However, I very much want to preserve memories for my children. Writing a family blog has helped, but I still long for the feel of a book in my hands, a child on my lap, and smiles as we turn the pages of our memories.

I have a solution to offer to those of you, like me, who weren’t born with the scrapbooking gene: Yearly Memory Books. This is a scrapbook of sorts that you only write in or put pictures in ONCE a year… something probably even the most harried of us can manage.

Types of Scrapbooks

1. Birthday Book: Taking a picture of each child on their birthday, and keeping it either in a book just for them, or in a family birthday book. If you are feeling energetic, you can also write a few of their favorite things at that moment. Or you can write a recent memory or something you find exceptional about them that year. Another possibility would be to write a letter to your child and tape the envelope to the page. You can give the letters to your child when they graduate high school or for a wedding gift or other important event.

2. Christmas Book: We all take lots of pictures at Christmas, so it’s a great way to mark the passage of time. Using a scrapbook and even just filling a two-page spread with photos and the who-what-when-where of that year’s holiday events can be fun. I keep our book with our Christmas ornaments so we get to flip through it each year to stroll down memory lane.

3. School Book: You can snap a picture on the first day of school (with their new clothes and backpack) and write details about their teacher’s name and best friends. Or simply fill a book with their yearly school pictures (rather than having them in a pile or box somewhere).

4. Pick-a-Day Book: Birthdays, the beginning of school and holidays are a hectic time of the year. So it might work better for you to pick a yearly event for your book that is at a calmer time for your family. If you make a special heart-pancake Valentine’s breakfast each year, it could be fun to take a family picture at that event. Or you may want to use Mother’s Day each year as a time to write a note to each of your children and remind them of what special things they did for you that year. Find a day that works for you and try to stick to it.

Most of us love looking at old photographs of ourselves and hearing stories of our antics as kids. We want our children to have those same opportunities. And even if you aren’t a Scrapbooking King or Queen, you can still make some beautiful books that your kids (and you) will cherish for years.

If you liked this, you might also like Photographic Memories | Reasons to Give Scrapbooking a Chance

Joelle Yamada writes from Arizona.

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About Joelle Yamada

Joelle Yamada

write from the Pacific Southwest.

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