Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Scrapbooking & Contentment

Putting together a photo order so that we can each scrapbook!

This past weekend I went scrapbooking. I dusted off my tools and my pictures. I hauled my gear an hour away from my home. I set up my stuff on a table and focused on getting child number three's baby book finished. And now she has photos of herself in a dedicated book from birth until one year old, just one month after her ten year old birthday. Woo-hoo!

I was in the midst of kind-hearted women. We ate when we wanted to, slept if we wanted to, and all of us worked on our albums. There was chit-chat about our pictures and the memories that they hold. There were movies and music and working on our albums.

And here in this atmosphere of kindness, I still felt pressure. It certainly wasn't coming from anyone else. We didn't even spend much time looking at each other's stuff; we were busily focused on our own projects.

And yet, we glance. I saw the seemingly large stacks of page layouts they were getting done. The amazing amount of craft and beauty. My pages were much more simple. I worked much more slowly.

And I found myself needing to remind myself that I was making the book for my daughter. And she would love the album. She has been waiting for the album for a long time. She won't look at anyone else's album. Only this one that I created for her.

Why is so hard not to get caught up in comparing myself to others? Wanting these other scrapbookers, most of whom I do not know, to come and be impressed with my pages?

Isn't it fascinating that I needed to remind myself who I was making the album for? There was no external pressure about this. I sure seem to fight a lot of internal pressure. Where does it come from? And why so strongly?

As I thought, "I'm making this my daughter. She will love it.", I began to be content. I remembered my focus, my calling.

And truly I was right. My daughter loved the album. Actually the whole family delighted in the album, these pictures of welcoming sweet number three to our family.

Those other scrapbooks that made me feel pressure, they've faded but not the women that created them. I remember their friendly faces. Their encouraging words. Their adamant invitation that I join them at their monthly crops. I remember their kindness.

The stacks of more work that "they" seemed to get done went by the wayside when the oldest said, "Wow, it looks like you accomplished a lot."

May this internal, ridiculous pressure go away once and for all!

Surely, I will yet learn the secret of contentment.

...for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances...I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation...Philippians 4:11, 12

How about you?
Can you relate to feeling inward pressure that is not really there externally?Or do you just think I am crazy? Do you have some secrets to share about learning to be content?


  1. Glad you enjoyed yourself!! I have no secret formula to not compare ... : ) And no, you are not crazy! : )

  2. I am a perfectionist, which drives me crazy. My husband always says: there will always be someone better than you and worse than you at everything. Someone in the table next to you may have been looking at your work and thinking: "wow, I wish I could scrapbook like her" :) All you can do is the best you that you know how to be. I relate.


Thanks for being part of the conversation...I love hearing from you. Kathleen

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