Wednesday, July 23, 2014

An Unexpected Find

In early 2013, before Jeff's injury, I got a new digital camera, and I gave my old one to Evie. She was thrilled at the prospect of being able to take "real" pictures with a "real" camera.

For days at a time, she snapped constantly. Our eyes were blinded with the burst of the flash. She had so much fun taking those pictures.

Then our lives were turned upside down, and the camera, along with everything else we owned, was thrown into boxes and moved (twice!) into new homes.

Just a few weeks ago, Evie found that old camera and immediately started snapping more pictures. But she soon came to me saying it wouldn't take any more photos. I quickly discovered the memory card was full.

You can imagine my surprise when I loaded the images onto my computer and found over 300 photos!

I was overcome with emotion when I saw the moments our girl captured on this camera. There were pictures of Jeff - standing - being goofy in the kitchen. Pictures of our two beloved cats, Spencer and Olive, who we brokenheartedly had to give away after Jeff's injury. Also included were portraits of stuffed animals and random things like Evie's artwork, living room furniture, and messy closets.

It was a glimpse back in time. Just a year ago - a lifetime ago.

I knew I couldn't let those pictures just sit on my computer. So today I ordered a printed book from Shutterfly that I filled up with those blurry, silly, wonderful photos.

Here's a preview of the cover and first page:

Cover Image
(Evie's Photos: Our life through the eyes of a three year old)

First Page
In case you have trouble reading the words, here they are:

Our Life
by Evie

In early 2013, I gave Evie my old digital camera and told her to have fun.

She snapped photos of everything she could.

She captured a time in our life just before everything changed.

She gave us these memories through her eyes.

Photos taken between March and July 2013

Those are the only words I wrote in the whole 52-page book. Her photos tell the rest of the story. Here's a few more of my favorite layouts:

We loved our old house where these pictures were taken. It was a two-story townhome in a lovely neighborhood with lovely neighbors. It was perfect for us in our old life. But all wrong for our new life. And so we had to leave it behind - quickly - because at two months after the accident, we didn't know for sure when Jeff would be coming home. We had to be ready for him in a new home when he did.

It still seems so strange to me that after we drove to the beach on the morning of July 27, 2013, Jeff never returned to that house again. He never saw our cats again. For him, the transition from our old life into our new life was very abrupt. He still talks about our old house - how much he misses it, and how much he wishes we didn't have to leave it.

What a treasure to find these photos hidden away in an old, semi-broken, almost forgotten camera. These photos speak volumes to our daughter's creativity - and her uncanny ability to just make things a little better.

I can't wait to get our memory book in the mail!

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