Last Sunday was one of those stay in and be cosy afternoons and the ideal opportunity to explore the children’s memory boxes which they have been keen to explore since I told them all about the special memories contained within. The boxes are our memories of the children’s time with us, whilst social services and the foster carers were able to provide a few photos of the children’s first years we have no memorabilia from these early days. I find this sad but unfortunately there is nothing we can do; we just fill the boxes with special memories so they don’t notice the missing first toys, Babygro or new born wristband. The children do have a few toys which they brought to us but these are very precious and used on a daily basis so not suitable for the memory boxes yet. The memory boxes contain the items I can’t bear to throw out.
Little Miss’ Memory box
- Pink Cardigan. My Mum knitted this cardigan and it was one of Little Miss’ first gifts. She looked gorgeous in it and I loved that it had been hand made with so much love. Our parents were just as excited by their new grandchildren and made sure that they were welcomed into the family.
- Pink Scrap Book. This is not a scrap book but a very carefully made book welcoming Little Miss to our family and introduced by her dolly, her first present from us. I loved making this, I took some fun photos of dolly around our house and town and wrote simple captions. It took a lot of work but I am so proud of it and it is a lovely welcome to our family. It was given and read to Little Miss in the days before she met us for the first time and we presented her with dolly on our first meeting with her.
- Union Jack boppers. Little Miss wore these when the Olympic torch came through our town and we dressed up in red, white and blue. It was a really special day and so much fun. To me it was such a poignant and happy day. The saddest day of my life was the closing ceremony in Beijing in 2008. I was in hospital after a tragic loss, numb with pain and grief and I remember watching bits of the closing ceremony and the flame being passed to London. Admist all the hurt and confusion, it provided a brief moment of clarity and determination that when the Olympics came to London, we would have our happy ever after. It happened and seeing the flame pass by was very emotional and life affirming!
- Mr Bear books. Little Miss’ early bedtime routine was reading her this set of books, they are so lovely with such strong themes of being loved and cared for. I could read her any book but she always wanted to finish with these.
- Santa letters. This is another Grandma tradition in which she arranges via the NSPCC charity letters from Santa. They are personalised so give a little reminder of the friends and toys from over the years.
Also in the boxes but hidden in the photos are Little Miss’ artwork and early stories, her reading records and home school communication books, certificates from school and hobbies, special cards etc…
LITTLE MAN’S MEMORY BOX
- The hat. The monster hat seemed to sum up Little Man he was a monster of fun and his personality suited this hat so well, everyone would smile at him in it.
- The Blue jumper. Like Little Miss, Little Man’s jumper was knitted with love by Grandma and also had a matching pompom hat. He was so gorgeous in this and we wore it until he could no longer squeeze into it. I have a fantastic photo from last week when he held it up against himself, it’s amazing how much he’s grown and his little quizzical face questioning if he really used to fit into it is priceless.
- The Butterfly Talking photo Album. Again this was created to help introduce Little Man to his new family. As he was only 1, he needed something very simple. This is a series of photographs of us, our dog and parents and as you turn each page we say the names of everyone. Even after moving to us, he used to like this book and would read it and listen for the twinkle as he turned a page.
As with Little Miss, Little Man’s box is also full of Art work, certificates, homemade cards, stickers and communication books and diaries. The children’s boxes also contain special family letters written on the anniversary of their arrival to our family by my Mum and myself telling them all the amazing things they have done that year and why they are so special.
These are the first few years of our memory boxes and hopefully they will be filled with lots of sparkly memories over the years. The children loved looking through them and piecing their memories with mine. I love these boxes too as they contain all little things which remind us of our beautiful daughter and son and our lives together.