I was fumbling through a closet earlier this evening looking for the cord to an old radio when I came across several packets of pictures developed from film. I sat down in the hallway in front of the open closet, cords scattered all around me, and began flipping through the prints.
In the years before digital cameras, and especially when I lived 500 miles from home, I took pictures on my old film camera constantly. With a new baby and grandparents no where nearby, I was expected to document The Girl’s early days. As soon as I’d fill up a roll I would race to the drug store or megamart to have them developed; duplicates were mandatory. Half would be split between family members and the other half would be put in a box of other picture envelopes waiting to be put in a photo album.
I was much better at taking and having pictures developed than I ever was at putting them in albums. Stacks and stacks of pictures would collect before I’d run out for a few three-inch photo binders to store them it. The chore was tedious. I had the child in front of me – what did I need to make an album for only to have it sit on a shelf and collect dust?
Nine years later I stumble upon the last of the envelopes that never made it to an album. Envelopes that were packed up and moved four states away to sit in yet another box, doomed never to grace the pages of a plastic film covered sheet. Nine years later and I’m sitting on the floor smiling from ear to ear at pictures of The Girl dressed up in play clothes, tiara fixed just so, septor in hand. Nine years later and wondering where all the pictures of The Boy are.
Actually I know exactly were the vast majority of them are: still on the computer having never been printed at all. My first digital camera was obtained shortly after his birth. His life has been documented in pixels and jpegs but not too many 4×6 prints. He asked me once after looking through one of The Girls albums, “where are my pictures?” I laughed at the thought then pointed to the computer, “in there Bubba.”
Photo book-making websites are all the rage now. Upload, sort, decorate, border, caption, and voila – a printed photo album is waiting to be shipped to you. As much as I used to avoid putting prints in a three-ring album, I’ve avoided making a photo book for The Boy.
The kids are gone for the next week at their Dadda’s house. Quite alone time is something I will have in abundance until they return on Friday. I need to make this a priority to complete. He needs his own picture book. Lord knows I have a thousand pictures of him.