How to archive kids artwork without guilt!
Hey there loveliness,
I know. There there...I'm weeping too, sitting here sorting through boxes of our two kids' artworks, felt doll crafts, knitting, embroideries, model airplanes, cars, Pokemon cards, Beanie babies. They are now 23 and 26 years old and I now need to sort, purge, and archive the memories and keepsakes. Had I done them as I went along, things wouldn't be so monumental right now.
Why is it so hard to get rid of our kids' stuff? Maybe it's just me but I kept one box each of their school records and umpteen boxes of their good toys, books, art and crafts. The photos are the most under control, albeit the prints need to be selected for digital conversion, and the digital ones needed to tagged and categorized by name, year, and occasion.
I thought about my grief of parting with their artwork and cards that they made for me. I concluded that it's not the item itself, it's the memory wrapped up in each item and holding on to them makes me feel like the kids are still here, sitting next to me. To throw them away would be the equivalent of throwing bits and pieces of the kids away, and I still couldn't bear the thought of doing it. On the other hand, I can't sit on these because nobody will even look at them and one day our kids would have to deal with these boxes, and that thought is even more heartbreaking. I know the last thing the kids wanted to do is to go through these boxes once we're gone; it's a morbid thought, but it's like working on a Will, nobody wants to think about that either but it's gotta be done!
I've concluded that, in fairness to all parties, I will preserve their childhood memories and curate them with selected photos and an archival of artwork. After all, memories are malleable and we remember something best when there are photos to help us relive those moments. It remains to be seen how brutal and relentless I can be with snapping photos of such mementos and chucking the physical items. Here are some examples of my attempt to preserve their artwork. These will be shared on my family's Google Photo account, but your photos can reside whichever cloud platform you choose.
I will share how I continue my slash and burn preservation of our kids' stuff...
PS. I used PhotoGrid to create these archives.