Before Ellie was born, we bought a scrapbook so we could collect Ellie’s milestones in one place. Pictures of her first birthday, Doctor visit measurements, her first drawings, and ultra-sound pics. You know, that sort of stuff. The only problem is that Ellie is now almost two and a half and the book is empty. So before she turned 18, I wanted to get caught up. And with it being Mother’s Day, I thought making a scrapbook of Ellie’s first two years would make a perfect gift for Aya.

Now, when I say scrapbook, I don’t mean going to Michael’s or JoAnn’s to buy all those fancy papers and stickers and all that. I just wanted to put some pictures and some of Ellie’s documents in one place. I didn’t plan on throwing things together. This book would look nice and thought out, but I didn’t plan on “scrapbooking.”

I don’t even like the word scrapbooking. It’s a noun that’s somehow become a verb. A scrapbook should be something you put things in, not something you do. “I scrapbooked, I’m scrapbooking, we are all meeting together later to scrapbook.”

Somehow, this simple process of collecting memories has turned into a billion dollar industry that I thought was for semi-crazy moms who loved stickers and needed a creative outlet. Well, that’s what I used to think until I found myself at Michael’s during National Scrapbooking Month with a 40% off coupon.

I was at my mom’s working on this covert scrapbook project for Aya when I saw the Michael’s ad. It was National Scrapbooking Month and they had all of their fancy scrapbook paper for 40% off. “Hmmm, Aya likes fancy paper. Maybe I should buy a few sheets to spruce this up,” I thought. So off to Michael’s I went.

There was a sea of paper in every color, pattern, and theme imaginable. I paced the aisle back and forth meticulously selecting my paper based on the color schemes of the pictures I had and the theme of the holidays I would be “scrapbooking.” But as I selected sheets I didn’t know where to stop. If I had a special background for Ellie’s first Christmas, then I needed one for Easter, Halloween, and her birthday. But her first birthday and second birthday had to have different backgrounds. Oh man, this was getting complicating. I felt the scrapbooking bug slowly start to sink it’s decorative pinchers into me. I had to get out of there.

But then as I made my way towards the cashier, I saw the aisles, and aisles of stickers. All 40% off! “Hmmm, Aya loves stickers, maybe I should get a few to spruce up the book,” I thought.

Ugh, wait a minute! What was happening to me!? This project was changing from me making a scrapbook, to me scrapbooking. Ahhhhh!

Luckily, I held strong and did not buy any stickers. However, I did receive a free scrapbooking bag (filled with coupons) when I checked out and did make a few more trips to Michael’s to buy more fancy paper. Whoever thought of the scrapbooking business is a genius.

Anyway, Aya loved her gift so much so that she cried. It might have been because she has a few extra pregnancy hormones, but either way, I took that as a good response. It wasn’t even 100% complete!

I ran out of time so I wasn’t able to add labels to everything in the scrapbook. But with it still being National Scrapbooking Month and having a bag full of coupons, maybe I’ll give in and go buy some of those over priced stickers anyway.

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