In November I thought I'd get started on sorting out photos. Going through just over fourteen years of photos was really hard. I loved seeing all the photos that I had forgotten about, but it was emotionally draining as I felt like I was living through a lot of things again, and it just really hit me how much I miss Aaron and Noah.
I made each of the boys a separate folder on the computer and spent hours, and hours and hours (and was wondering why the heck I decided to do it!) copying every single photo that they were in with Noah and Aaron. I hated that there were no digital photos before 2003 as it meant I had to scan four years of Jalen's photos.
I am a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to things like this, and then sorted all of their photos into categories - baby and toddler, birthdays, Christmas, seasons, footy, family holidays, hospital visits etc. Then I had to do the biggest job of making the books online. I ended up going with Snapfish as they were having good specials at the time, and I got the books at 50% off. I didn't really care how much it was going to cost, because I knew that the books would be priceless to them.
I can't even count how many hours it took to sort the photos, and then put the books together, and I was seriously regretting my decision in the middle of December when I was trying to get them done in time for Christmas, plus being really busy with everything going on at the end of the year.
Jay ended up with almost 1000 photos, Harri around 850 and Kobe about 750 (shows how many more photos I took as the boys got older), and each book ended up being 150 pages. There was no way I could keep it a surprise from the boys as I was on the computer whenever I had time, to get them finished, and they were really looking forward to getting them. I told them that if they didn't look at their books for three hours every day (after all the work I put into them) then there would be trouble! ;)
It's so nice to see the boys looking at their books all the time, and telling me how much they love them. There has been lots of tears as they've look at them, but also lots of laughs as they talk about remembering certain things.
I told the boys tonight I wanted to take a photo of them with their favourite pages, and these are the ones they chose.
Kobe came up to me a couple of days ago with this page open. He said 'this is a really cool page Mum when Dad is at Noah's grave with us, isn't it?' (it has a funny line around the page as it's a screen shot from the website). It is really strange seeing photos of Aaron at Noah's grave now, as we have been so many times without him.
This is my favourite page in Kobe's book.
Harri loves this page in his book, and so do I. He looks so much like Kobe, and Kobe is sure that some of the pics of Harri are actually him.
I love the spring page in Jay's book.
I also love this page in Jay's book, of the day that he did the head shave to raise money for the Leukemia Foundation.
Even though it was hard physically and emotionally to get the books done, I'm so glad that I did as the boys now have their own special memories with Noah and Aaron to keep forever.