being inspired by my past self

In the time between outlining season three, and sitting down to record season three, I’d completely forgotten what it is we said we would talk about. We pulled up the notes in our final prep session, and I looked at the headline for episode one – nostalgia. Oh.

Nostalgia, looking back, assessing the past as I look to the future, all have been playing on my mind recently. Part of it has been the hot mess of the past two years (and for me personally, 2019 was also pretty darn ordinary), looking for comfort in the familiar. Part also has been inspired by an upcoming Big Zero birthday. It has me thinking a lot about the things I’ve loved in the past, the things I want to bring with me into this next half of my life, the things I want to leave behind. It also has me unashamedly embracing the things that bring me joy. Rewatching a 90s show for the fourth(ish) time? You bet I will. Revisiting a hobby from 2012 that I’d let drift away? Come at me. It’s also given me the freedom and confidence to acknowledge I am most definitely cherry picking the good parts of those times, when the reality is they weren’t always easy even as I long for certain parts of them.

“Wrapping ourselves up in a patchwork of the people we used to be”. I’m quoting myself here, but one technique in patchwork is fussy cutting. It’s an idea that works here. I’m looking back over all the people I used to be, trimming out the parts that are worth remembering, embracing, moving forward with, ignoring the rest of the fabric that doesn’t serve my purposes.

Lately, I’ve been nostalgic for the crafty me of 2014. Again, acknowledging it wasn’t easy – I had four under seven, including a baby who needed me multiple times during the night. I had two children in mainstream school, a third in preschool, multiple after school activities. It was a busy, crazy time. And yet, with that baby just turned nine, I can look back, with the help of my blog, and in the glossy shiny way of social media, I find myself missing my 2014 self. Even in that busy season, I had time to blog regularly, and craft regularly. In particular, I found myself missing the days of weekly project life spreads.

I’ve been hankering to bring memory keeping back into my crafting routine for some time. I’ve done a few mini books, and I always do December Daily, but I wanted the regular, boring, every day life. The kind of albums I will look back on in 20 years time – “remember when you camped in the back yard” “remember the year we got so much rain it blew out the dams” “remember how annoying the rabbits were when we were trying to grow lettuce – and the price of lettuce was through the roof?”

Last month, my eldest son got his learners license. In the way of mums, I took a million photos of all the everything. It struck a chord. I could make a photo album of this. Then I fell down a rabbit hole of old blog posts, back when Project Life featured prominently. I moped and moaned and talked about how much I missed it. It didn’t take look before I woke up and realised there was someone who could do something about that. Me.

I got online. I ordered papers. I built myself a kit. And tomorrow, I start printing photos, to create an album. An album so awesome, I’m going to make 2042 me yearn for the good old days of using craft as a diversion from the plague, and the economic crisis, and the threat of nuclear war. 2042 me is going to flick through and think “yeah. These were the good old days”. Nostalgia is funny like that.

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