Detail from "Marmalade Jar"

My Own Things

Using family treasures in my story

Back when I took up digital scrapbooking, I not only had no clue what I was getting into or how this thing worked, I also didn’t have anything to make a scrap page with. I thought “no problem. . . I can photograph things around the house, extract them, and have my own personal elements. And isn’t that what scrapping is all about? “ I foolishly thought there would be time not only to restore the family photos, design the pages, and write the family history for each page, but also to make everything that I used on each page.

About a day into my new scrapbooking project, I could be found searching the web for suitable scrapbook kits. It was obvious I’d need some help from others if I was going to get enough of this project done to leave something for the next generation to look at. I used a few items that belonged to the people in the story, but more and more I got caught up in new styles and new designs, forgetting about making the belongings that were part of our story characters in it.

It nagged at me, though. I was torn between wanting to get it all “done,” wanting to use the wonderful things I’d bought, and wanting to create with the things I grew up with. Recently I thought why not let some of those things become the inspiration for the artwork? I’d already dipped a toe or two into art journaling. It wouldn’t be that different to create a setting for an object instead of for words. And that’s how “Marmalade Jar” came into being.

The marmalade jar belonged to my grandmother. I can remember it set out on the dining table at breakfast, where she’d have a piece of toast with a soft-boiled egg. Gram hated cooking, but inexplicably seemed to enjoy making homemade jam and candies. It was a limited repertoire, but she was very good at heating up a can of Franco-American Macaroni, making jello with bananas and miniature marshmallows, and cooking peppermint or clove-flavored fondant, orange marmalade, and apricot jam. Hers was best marmalade ever made. Our treasures are just too important to leave out of our story. They were there for so much of it.

Bouquet with Marmalade Jar
Credits: Too numerous to state, but including Pink Lotty, Valentina, Creative Victorian, itKuPiLLi, Lorie Davison, Priss.

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