Thirteen years ago this week I became a mom for the first time. The road to motherhood was not easy. My husband and I endured four miscarriages in a little over a year. Just when I had given up and decided that being a biological mother may not be in the cards for me, I found out that I was pregnant again.It was the start of the most amazing journey of my life.
Now, the newborn of 13 years ago is days away from being a teenager. How can I mark this momentous occasion?
I had planned to have a little fun with this week’s post in honor of my birthday boy. Then I was contacted by My Memories, a digital scrapbooking program asking if I would want to try out and review their new digital scrapbooking software. Well the themes just started to come together. The following is my birthday message to my very sweet Tom.
How is it possible that my sweet baby is 13? How can I tell you how much these last 13 years have meant to me? Having you did not change my life at all… I just got a whole new, wonderful life.
Angel baby is what I called you those first few weeks, because you were. Daddy and I could not believe our luck. You were the perfect baby.
Parents at last. After so much pain and frustration, we got our happy ending. And, then our real story began.
Putting you down in your crib was impossible for me to do in those first few months, not because you would wake up, but because I loved holding you in my arms and I didn’t want to let go. (I still don’t!)
Yes, you drive us crazy at times. Yes, we drive you crazy at times. Yes, that is our job. Yes, we love you so much it hurts. Yes, we are so happy and proud that you are our son.
Blues Clues was your favorite show for the first few years of your life. We watched it so much, that to this day I can’t get the mail without thinking of the song, “We Just Got a Letter.”
I will never forget dropping you off at preschool with tears in your eyes. My heart would break when you would say goodbye to me and then ask me to dry your tears before I left. I would work so hard to be firm with you because I knew it was best for you to go, but then I would go back in my car and cry.
Really. I’m not as tough as I seem. But I love you so much, I will gladly play the bad guy, if I think it will help you. I’m not kidding when I say I love you so much that I don’t care if you hate me.
Thomas is the name we chose for you the July morning we found out you were going to be a boy. Daddy wanted to name you after Jerry Garcia. He also wanted to decorate your nursery with Loony Toons wallpaper. Morning sickness has its advantages.Hope you know how very special you are to not only me but to our whole family. Your kind heart and wonderful spirit lights up a room, and you bring joy to so many people. I’m amazed at how you can relate to the oldest adult in the room as well as the youngest child. You have such a gift with people, I can’t wait to see where it will take you.
Days have never been the same since you were born. My life and my heart just expanded the day you arrived. I have learned so much about joy, love and kindness from you. I also now know more about the Beatles, Elvis Presley, and Buddy Holly than I ever thought was possible.
Although I’m thrilled you are growing into an amazing person, I will always miss the times I held you in my arms, or stood over your crib with daddy and just watched you sleep. It was magical in a way you won’t understand until you have your own children.
“You can be anything that you want to be, and do anything that you want to do” was the song that Steve would sing at the end of Blues Clues. Daddy and I would dance around with you and sing it with you. Please know it’s true whatever anyone else may tell you.
Totally into the Beatles.
Made me a mommy for the first time.
Some of the best presents I have ever received have been those that were made for me. Since I’m not very crafty, scrapbooking always seemed like an ideal craft for me and a gift that I could make and give that would have special significance to both me and the receiver.
For years I have been wanting to put all the pictures I have of my children in a scrapbook so that they will have something special to look back on as they get older.
The one attempt I made at starting a book ended up with me covered in pictures and sticky tabs. It took weeks to get a few pages done and cost me a small fortune on all the supplies. I ended up giving my husband a half finished book with the promise and good intentions of eventually finishing it. That was seven years ago and I can’t even remember where I put it.
So, I was pretty intrigued when My Memories contacted me about their “My Memories Suite v3” digital scrapbooking software. The offer of trying out a copy and reviewing it for my readers interested me quite a bit. As did the idea of getting to give away a copy to one lucky reader.
I must confess I was a little scared. My computer skills are not much beyond turning the darn thing on.
As it turned out I really had nothing to fear. The program is really user friendly. I had all the fun of playing with all the pretty embellishments I have always loved to look at without the fear of ruining them by putting it in the wrong place. If I didn’t like how something looked all I needed to do was click and erase.
I used one of the existing templates for the pages I used here, but you can completely create you own as well. Even with the templates you can customize the pages. I moved pieces, got rid of things I didn’t like and added things that I thought worked better. You can even add music and videos to your projects. I had a lot of fun with it.
I’m thrilled that along with the copy My Memories gave me to review they also gave me a copy to give away to one of my great readers. I can only imagine what someone with even an inch more talent than I have could create with it.
If you would like a chance to win My Memories Suite v3 digital scrapbooking software all you need to do is visit their website at http://www.mymemories.com/ and then come back and let me know what digital paper pack you liked the best.The My Memories website has gorgeous digital paper packs available at very reasonable prices as well as offering some for free download.
I will close the giveaway next Saturday December 10 and will announce the winner on Sunday, December 11.
My memories has also given me a coupon code so if you don’t win you can still try My Memories Suite v3 out for a 10% discount. Just use the code STMMMS24422. I will also keep this badge on my sidebar so you can use it anytime you visit the dishwasher and I.
Thank you for helping me have fun celebrating the birth of my first baby!
I hope his birthday was fabulous!!! 🙂
Romina Garcia says
Oh Happy Birthday gorgeous boy!! That was absolutely beautiful!! I can relate to the whole scrap booking thing. I have two left scrapbooking feet for hands. This digital scrapbooking idea sounds fabulous!!
Grumpy Grateful Mom says
What a wonderful post about your handsome 13-year-old! It was so fun to see your pictures!!! He was such precious little guy he was and you look gorgeous! I have also spent many hours watching Blue’s Clues. Those songs are catchy!
And I like the Christmas Cookies pages. 🙂
Thank you guys so much for your visits and great comments!
Janae I liked those ones too, I also liked the Snowball pack!!
Thank you again for all your support, it means the world to me!! Much love to you all!
What a beautiful essay for your son. They do grow up fast. I am currently watching Blue’s Clues on a daily basis. My 7 yr old loved it when he was a toddler and now my 2 yr old is an even bigger fan. He carries a notebook and pencil around where ever he goes. I really liked the scrapbook pages you created. I love to scrapbook but with 4 kids I am finding it hard to stay up to date. I have been curious about digital scrapbooking. So glad you posted a review. Wow, I had no idea there were so many digital paper packs to choose from. My favorite was the Rock On pack since I have quite a few guitar fans in the house!
Another great post, Kathy. My son will turn 13 in September…and he’s my baby.
BTW-I have your post all set and scheduled for next Monday, 12/12!
What a wonderful post about your son!
What an amazing post dedicated to your amazing journey with your son. How beautiful he is and and you are for sharing that with us. Happy Birthday Thomas!
Perspective Parenting says
Wow, I am in tears reading that special dedication to your son. So, so beautiful…truly. And happy for you.
Small Kucing says
such a lovely post. Happy Birthday
Happy Birthday to Tom! Love the pages of photos you’ve shared here – hope you enjoy this hobby – I’m sure so many memories will come spilling up as you go through each photo:)
I love that you’ve voiced your feelings re. not being able to wait to see what Tom becomes and where he goes – I often think this about my children:)
Thanks for sharing,
What a heartfelt tribute to your son on his birthday! I love the idea of using Happy Birthday followed by his name to start each sentence. I am also not very crafty, so scrapbooking and other DIY activities aren’t part of my interests. I think I could do something digitally, though. How exciting that they contacted you, huh?? Wishing your little teenager a very happy birthday!!!!
I'm NOT a VOLCANO! says
Wow, what a beautiful post! Your son is such a handsome guy. (all the way through the years!) As always, I love your post.
Pretty much cried throughout your essay- stopped short of the scrapbooking description. Tom is a very lucky little boy. So beautiful. xo
I loved this. It’s amazing how much our children change us 🙂
Mommy LaDy Club says
I love the photos of you Kathy! This is so nice, and Tom is indeed a lucky teenager…get ready!;)
I noticed your other post below, and I thought, how did I miss it! Good, I’m not crazy, and I love Sharon too…great post:)
Elisabeth Hirsch says
What a sweet post! I hope he had a wonderful birthday. My oldest (a girl) will be 10 on the 10th. So fun :0)
Happy Birthday, Tom!
What a sweet way to commemorate his special day!
I like the Terrific Twins Word Art…since I know a mom who would love to do a page for her fav twins:-)
Larri @ Seams Inspired says
I had a hard time looking at the Scrappy Pages, cause I was teary from your post!
♪♫Happy Birthday, dear Tom!♪♫
♫♪Happy Birthday to you!♫♪
I really love the “Fresh Air” scrapbook pages. They’re bright and cheery with colors I love. ☺ What a fantastic giveaway! Thanks, friend! Fingers-crossed.
Aww, what a cute blog post; I love how you did the letters of Happy Birthday in different colors and each representing something meaningful. Hope you enjoy the day with your ‘little’ boy. By the way, I love scrap-booking, I don’t think you really can mess that up by accidentally cutting a picture (like this didn’t happen to me once).
I can’t thank you all enough for your great comments and birthday wishes!! Tom just loves the attention!! (We are a family of hams and love the love!!) I can’t thank you all enough for your great support! Much love to you all!
I would love to enter your scrapbooking giveaway – I adore the ‘It Happened This Year’ pack.
Love love love this tribute to Tom. So creative and fun. Your love just shines as his mother. And my oh my aren’t you just beautiful in those pictures!
My favorite paper pack was the all year long one at the bottom of the page. 🙂
~Blessings my friend,
Kathy, what an unbelievably sweet tribute to your son. Happy Birthday to Tom. Those photos are beautiful and I love how you arranged them. They look so pretty in the scrapbook images. It is so neat to go back and see all the changes and moments through the years. You are truly a beautiful person inside and out.
I read all your stories and you bring such hope and joy to so many.
No doubt that your children know how very lucky they are!!
I won a giveaway a couple weeks ago for this package. I couldn’t believe it. I’m excited to try it out.
Wishing you a wonderful week!!
Lots of love to you!
Glenda Cates says
Happy Birthday to your son. He sounds like a wonderful young man and your a terrific mom. I Love your blog and it is my first time to visit it. I liked the Keep On Trackingpack on the site.
Celebrate Woman says
Your Happy-Birthday Narrative has made me cry. There’s that deep connection to our kids that can be described only with the word wrapped in feelings LOVE.
Celebrate Your Birthday Today, Thomas!
What a sweet and beautiful post! I’m getting all nostalgic now! I’ve toyed with the idea of doing digital scrapbooking… my problem is that I just have SO MANY PICTURES I just can’t narrow them down to a couple per page! My finished book would no doubt cost me $5000!! LOL Your pages look beautiful, and congrats on your sweet boy’s birthday!
Smiles, Jenn @Misadventures in Motherhood
Becky Jane says
They have several varieties under the title Distinct Hush…I like these the best! Happy Birthday to your son!
Amber @JadeLouise Designs says
Happy Birthday to your boy! Sometimes my boy acts as though he is 13, but he’s only 7. boy do I have a long road ahead of me. lol.
I really enjoyed today’s post; and if I could win, I love the SnowBalls Fun Pack.
Your Friend from VB Jadelouise Designs
Val Curtis says
Ok. That just made me all teary. My 4 1/2 year old just had a meltdown while making cookies and then read this. Time is fleeting. Kleenex please.
Love the Camping Guy pack since we do at least 4 trips
with friends during the summer and I would love to make memory books for them.
Starting to recover now. Happy #13 Super Mama. XO
Happy birthday to Thomas. Time just flies by doesn’t it? I have a 14 year old and a 11 year old. seems like just yesterday I was in the thick of infant toddler rearing. I think it gets harder in many ways when they grow up.
An Irish Italian Blessing says
Happy Birthday Tom!!! Another totally amazing and sweet post about your kiddos! Do you ever share your posts with them so they can see how much love you generate for them? It’d be neat for them to get a glimpse of just how much mommy loves them. And I like Tom much better than Jerry 🙂
Your story really touched my heart, and I’m glad God decided to bless you with your sweet bundle of joy. Happy birthday Tom and many more yrs to you. Hope you bring forth sunshine in your household, amen.
Thank you for sharing!! Children are a blessing that is for sure…I have 4 adult children and two grandchildren and life is never boring. Happy Holidays!!
Love your post (and the scrapbooking pages)! Happy Birthday to Tom!
Mommy LaDy Club says
I’m doing the giveaway! I like the word art one:)
Beck Gambill says
Kathy, what a special birthday! I hope Tom and your family have a wonderful time celebrating. The mommy journey is an amazing one isn’t it. I had the opposite experience of not wanting children when I got pregnant, my husband and I were stunned and overwhelmed. Best surprise God could have given us!
Spilled Milkshake says
What a beautiful post! Your love for your son comes through in every single word. I hope his transition to the teen years has been stress-free lol.
I really enjoyed looking at your pictures. I’ve been doing some digital scrapbooking, too, and I really love it. At least I’m not spending a million dollars on supplies and staring at all of them with no idea how to put them together in the same way my sister always managed to lol!
Very cute! I’m not crafty either, but that is so easy and harmless, I’m definitely going to have to log on and check out their sight. Kids are such a miracle and blessing. Thank you for sharing your love for your son. Merry Christmas!