Ever since we started working on our month of using your stuff here at Write. Click. Scrapbook., I’ve been thinking about the idea of story scraps. Scraps are leftover bits of something…so a scrap of story? What might that be?
My layouts that are authentically my style are story-centric and have a lot of text. I tell a lot of stories. But there always are little parts that get left out—and those are what I’ve been thinking of this month…the story scraps I don’t want to forget but maybe need to work on telling more often. I thought of three different kinds of story scraps:
1. The smaller parts of a larger experience. I think it’s hard, if not downright impossible, to tell all of our stories. Especially when we’re working with a large or important experience. The scraps of a story might be the tumble your toddler took while trick-or-treating, the great cup of hot chocolate you got in a tiny café on a ski trip, your daughter’s affection for the bride’s gown at a family member’s wedding. They can slip out of the larger narrative sometimes.
How I scrap these: I don’t ever say “I’m finished” with any topic. Years later I might think of a story about, say, our trip to Hawaii, and even though I’ve already made several pages about that trip, I’ll still let myself make another one to tell the story. I also watch for how stories from different time periods can be used on one layout.
2. Experiences you weren’t present for. This happens more and more as your kids get older—they do things without you! They have their own stories that don’t always intersect with your life, but you still want to document them.
How I scrap these: via cell phone, right as the experience is happening. At least, that’s how I gather the stories. Take this summer as an example, when one of my sons went to Disneyworld after competing in the HOSA Nationals. Once or twice a day, I’d send him a text that said something like “we’re eating spaghetti, what are you eating?” or “tell me what you’re doing right now?” Sometimes he’d send pictures, sometimes words, but either way it gave me the bits and pieces of a story, some words and images to document for him.
3. Code words that refer to family legends. Recently, I had a little kitchen accident, wherein I cut my forehead open. With the back of a knife. My kids, my husband, even one of my nieces have started teasing me about it. All they have to say is “pork roast” or “watch the knife!” and we start giggling again. (It really is a funny story, now that I’m on the other, no-longer-bleeding side of it!) I think all families have these shorthand ways of referring to the family stories that bind us together.
How I scrap these: Let me show you instead of telling you:
I wrote some details that relate to the photos, because that day also made me think about the power of story. Then I wrote down some of the stories Nathan might remember (or, alternately, need to be reminded of!), along with their code words. I included stories from my mom’s life, since she’s in the photos, my life since I was the one making the layout, and his life, since it’s a layout for him. Some of these story scraps might be told on other layouts, too, but not all of them are. I like the idea of having some of them all on one layout and I plan on making a few of this style of layout for all of my kiddos!
How about you? Can you think of other kinds of story scraps?