A Man's Perspective on Scrapbooking5:00 AM
Michael generously agreed to share his thoughts on scrapbooking and being married to someone who has a slight addiction to pretty paper. We understand that this perspective and situation doesn't apply to everyone, and that our relationship is a unique one. That being said, we hope you gain something from what Michael shared! He chose a few of his favorite layouts that I've made over the past few years for today's post :)
I am one of many husbands around the world who has married a scrapbooker. With that comes many trips to craft stores to buy scores of 12x12 paper packs, trinkets, embellishments, and other strange objects that to a IT professional are completely undefinable. All that costs time and money. Time, because my wife wants to know my opinion on everything, and money, because, well, nothing is free. And while many may feel that their wives are wasting their time and money, I would like to share why I believe my wife's scrapbooking to be an investment in many areas that have enriched our lives.
Cost: It's not as bad as you think
To be specific, we spend a maximum of $30-40 a month on scrapbooking. We have a budget of $25 a month. However, there are months where things happen - the replacement silhouette blade that we buy is a dud, there is a special 60% off deal on a new scrapbook collection from Maggie Homes and it only happens once a decade... etc, etc. The important thing is that we have a budget, and any thing over that amount is discussed FIRST before it is purchased. If it must be purchased, and we don't have the money for it, we discuss ways to earn more money. In other words, we are a team, and we work together to support each other and the things that the other is passionate about. When you do that for your wife, gentlemen, it piles up dividends for you that will come back greatly multiplied. To see what those dividends are, keep reading.
Dividend #1 - Memories
"No," he said. "I can't remember hardly any good memories at all past the last couple of years of our marriage. I wish we would have taken more pictures or something, because the opportunities for creating great memories are rare after 30+ years..."
I asked him why. He said didn't have definitive answer, but guessed it was because the craziness of life and the daily and weekly to-do lists at some point become the focal point. While there is still love and trust in the marriage, the "magic" of it seems to mellow out, unless there is some way of remembering it, so that it is constantly rekindled.
Here then is dividend #1: my wife scrapbooks our memories and our life so that when I'm my dad's age, I can pull out any binder I want, and remember. My wife and I recently went over the last year of her scrapbooking our lives, and with each page, I was able to instantly remember and play over in my mind the good times we had together. It keeps the "magic" going in our marriage. For $25-40 a month, that is a priceless treasure that cannot be measured with any amount of money.
Dividend #2: My Wife
If you are good at Photoshop, edit her photos for her. If she is having a problem taking the photos of her scrapbooking pages, go to Target, buy a clear storage box, 4 clip on lights, and 4 LED bulbs and make her a light-box. Invest in what she is passionate about and what resonates with her soul, and she will do for you, likewise.
It will reinforce your remembrance of events and what she scrapbooked about because YOU were there with her. YOU took her shopping to buy the supplies to make that page. YOU helped her take the photos. YOU edited the final photo that made the Featured Page on her favorite scrapbooking website. There is nothing more powerful to your wife than to not only say that you love her pages and that you support her, but that you BELIEVE in her pages by getting involved. It turns her scrapbooking pages into OUR scrapbooking pages. It says, "I believe in you, and I believe in us."
Here then is dividend #2: My wife scrapbooks with my full support and belief in her. It makes her feel treasured and loved more than any amount of empty words or gifts ever could, because scrapbooking is the truest expression of who she is, and it assures her that what she feels and thinks is important and matters.
Dividend #3: Yourself
There are many self-centered people in this world, and if we were to be completely honest, we would say that most of the time, we are one of those people. By investing in your wife and her passion, you will have to spend time helping her with her passion, and it may be at times you would rather not. But by doing so, you develop your character, which is the most important thing you could possibly develop.
You develop patience, because you are given countless of opportunities that require patience. And if that patience is exercised, it begets more patience. The same is true for generosity, kindness, love, and numerous other characteristics that we all desire to develop, but wonder why we seldom do as the years go by. By consciously deciding to invest in your wife and SHOW her you believe in her and her passion, we will inevitably develop and definite your character and become ultimately who you've always wanted to be. And the best part of this is, it has the affect of being contagious.
Here then is dividend #3: I support my wife in her scrapbooking and help her any way that I can in what she is passionate about, because it challenges and develops the qualities in my character that I desire to have, and it develops new characteristics in me that I wasn't expecting, but come as a result of this timeless truth:
Whatever you give will come back to you greatly multiplied.
And that is why I support and encourage my wife to scrapbook.