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Documenting December in 2021 was hard. When Omicron hit midway through December it felt like a crushing blow to my everything. Like many of you, I had high expectations of the pandemic being behind us so when Omicron came along, it felt so heavy, it hurt. It remains a time I don’t want to document as I immediately feel the panic and anxiety creeping back. Being a business owner, it was absolutely gut wrenching. That black cloud continued into 2022 and I still feel those weights today as we continue to claw our way out of that black hole. Needless to say, my December 2021 album did not get completed. However, my children who are now 12, 10 and 2 look at these December Daily albums every year especially to determine exactly whose turn it is to put the star on the tree. So, I feel an obligation to complete it. And truth be told, I adore the process (in a normal year) and take great pride in the finished album. And now, here we are.
Luckily, the stories are already documented. Even the hard ones.
This summer, I made sure I wrote some words as I culled through photos while lying on the beach in Hawaii. I used to just email myself as I was trying to work through this project.
All that’s left is the fun part – putting the photos and words together.
Sometimes when I am going back months or years, my stories tend to be longer. To solve that problem, I do an insert as can be seen here. This insert has my story of Christmas Eve with a photo on the other side of the 5×7 insert. Before I go, let’s just take a moment to talk about how ridiculous my oversized photo is. Not one single kid looking at the camera and my one year old getting ready to run away. It’s priceless – it’s a photo I hope to laugh at forever. Please don’t keep only the perfect photos in your album.

With every page I finish, it’s so fulfilling.
This time, I promise not to let so much time go on this project.
But for now, I will forgive myself – though weights were heavy.
And once again, I’ll remain hopeful that 2023 is my best year yet.

From my family to yours, I’d like to wish you all a very Happy New Year.
With love, Cathy, husband Ryan, Jane (12), Jack (10), Claire (2) and Hali the dog (2)

Photo Credit: Jana Melvin-Windsor

Cathy Caines
St. John’s, Newfoundland Labrador

Supplies and images used are Ali Edwards Story Kits, Elle Studio

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