We recently celebrated my mom's 70th birthday. Over the last month, I've been working on a photo memory book to give her as a gift. My starting point was to sit down and write out the memories that came to mind when I thought of my mom, especially during my growing up years. Working on the project was a blessing to me, and I am hoping/trusting the finished product is a blessing to my mom as well!

I started ‘going’ with Mario when I was just 14. I can say from experience that it must have been hard for my mom to watch her daughter go down the path of a serious relationship at such a young age. Many decades have passed now, and God has been sovereign over my life (and Mario’s) at every point along the way. But I remain grateful, and I know Mario does, too, for the way my mom loved him. I’m sure that she wrestled with the same questions that I’ve faced as a mom. How do you balance welcoming and acceptance with the boundary and definition of your family? In our case, the stakes were perhaps a little higher than average, as Mario’s own family was so far away and so unable to support him.
My mom managed to love him and treat him as a son while still making it clear that I was her daughter first. She came with me to football and basketball games all over southern Minnesota, and she cheered as loudly as anyone else. She cooked meals and set an extra place at the table. She gave him hugs; she gave him gifts. When it counted most, she gave him the most important gift she could--forgiveness.

I grew up in a house at the edge of the woods, on the northernmost residential street in the new subdivision of Apple Valley. It was beautiful, especially in the fall. Many carefree childhood days were spent exploring there, building forts, collecting mayflowers, hiking all the way to ‘the pond.’ A summer evening ritual was standing in front of the mirror in the bathroom, my mom combing her hands through my hair, inspecting my scalp for wood ticks.
We all loved the woods, but perhaps my mom loved them most of all. We were all sorry when the land north of us was sold to a developer, but my mom truly grieved the loss of the woods.

Katie Pertiet
Watery Autumn Paper Pack
Flourishing Leaves No. 01
Hung Up Journalers No. 01
Stitched Up Frames No. 04
Ledger Paper Pieces Leaves No. 04
Fall Clusters Brushes and Stamps No. 02
All Hung Up No. 02
Littlest Ballerina Kit

Anna Aspnes
Script Tease Fall Overlays