I’ve always loved to keep little mementos – anything that helps me to remember something important and special that’s happened in my life.
Even more so since my girls have come along. Now I want to remember everything.
I’ve always kept cards – birthday cards, good luck cards, Christmas cards – but they’ve always been haphazardly thrown in a box with no order or sense to them but I keep them nonetheless. It just never felt right to throw out cards.
My Mam did the same, she kept all my cards in shoe boxes. As a child I loved taking the boxes out, going through the cards, looking at the beautiful designs, reading the ‘greeting card’ poetry, deciphering peoples handwriting.
Unfortunately one day I got a notion to make a collage of all my cards. I think I was about six or seven. Probably inspired after watching Mary on Make and Do.
Long story, short I made a haimes of it and, let’s just say, there’s no beautiful card collage à la me being displayed anywhere.
That’s why, two children later, and lots of shoe boxes full of cards from their births, Christmases and birthdays I wanted a neat way of storing their cards.
Initially I wanted to make them into a permanent book somehow but that would still mean just storing them in boxes until, when? They reached 18 maybe?
Then I thought of a scrapbook. Maybe I could cut them up – NOT collage style – but in half and stick them side by side onto a nice page in a scrapbook, but that would mean changing them, they technically wouldn’t be cards any more. That and I was much too afraid of taking a scissors to them – flashbacks of my messed up cards and my Mam’s devastated face at seeing the carnage voided any option which would involve scissors.
Also what if I put in all the ‘1 year old’ birthday cards, moved onto the ‘2 year old’ ones and came across a stray ‘1 year old’ one!!! That would wreck my head. I’d genuinely have to start all over again.
I needed something simple and easy to do to ensure I could keep on top of it. Nothing too complicated that I’d need a big chunk of time to sit down and get done because, let’s be realistic, with a three year old and a one year old that’s just not going to be an option.
I also needed something forgiving. Something that if mistakes were made or rogue cards appeared later could be easily rectified without ruining the whole look.
And so it became apparent that the simplest option was ultimately the best. I bought two lever arch folders (one for each girl) and a hole puncher – a hole puncher that punches heart-shaped holes nonetheless – something so simple but it makes a difference – and that’s it.
I’ll organise the cards I have now chronologically and just continue to add to the folder as time goes on. I might have to go on to use other folders in the future – depending on how popular the girls are, of course.
Here’s what it looks like so far:
I’m really happy with it actually – it’s simple but it’s neat, functional and it makes it really easy to go through all the cards.
I think I’ll keep adding little bits and pieces like tickets, some photographs and my three year olds artwork from pre-school to see how it turns out or if it should be a card-only zone. Time will tell. After all, that’s exactly what these folders are – time.