Sunday, December 7, 2008

From Time to Time

The Sunday Scribblings prompt is Tradition




My 2009 calendars collated but not yet bound

The tradition was started in the early 90s by my son Otto when his children were still small. He designed a calendar to share, originally, with his par
ents and siblings and those of his wife, Kristin. Each month of the year was represented by a large photo - most often of his son or daughter and their activities- from which would hang, by spiral binder, a calendar marked with the dates of family birthdays, anniversaries and any other dates that Otto felt worthy of inclusion - such as (I am just looking casually at a few of them in his 1995 calendar) - "Susan B. Anthony fined for voting, 1873" -"Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, 1756" - "Composting Toilet Day".

Here is a photo of Johnny from the 1995 calendar

The covers on these early calendars had simple construction paper covers designed with the help of his children.

Sample of early calendar cover.
Julian was their dog. Pippi was their cat.

Sometime in the late 90s son Otto announced that he would not be producing a calendar that year, and I said, "I'll do it!" And I have been doing it ever since.

And I have made it more and more difficult for myself by adding carefully computer-designed covers with computer printing of date (year) and greetings, by not having simple photos for the upper portion frequently using collages to work in everything I want to say about the year in 12 pages (13 if you count the cover). I try to represent the families of my children fairly, and, since I now have six grandchildren plus the generations between them and us, I spend a lot of time worrying. (I do that whether or not I am designing a calendar).


Cover for my 2009 calendar.

Then, of course, there is the task of constructing the calendar itself (two times since I started doing the calendar I have had the dates on one month displaced, thus disorienting the recipients and embarrassing me!) Then I must transfer the personal dates to their proper compartments. and add my own choice of extra dates. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart still has his birthday marked. I have added quite a few - Cesar Chavez of the United Farm Workers - Hiroshima Day - nothing as funny as son Otto's April first entries ("Turn quick, there's an elephant behind you", "Don't forget!! Tax returns now due March 15").

Here is a sample month from my 2009 calendar.

The number of recipients this year is 32. I have spent many hours of last two months working on the calendars, and I haven't had time to add comments to all the sunday scribblings and other blogs that that I read with such interest.

Our Canon printer is much faster than our old HP, making the printing less time-consuming -Thank Goodness! Husband Otto did the collating (see top photo) and is responsible for the binding and the punching of the hanging hole, which he is taking care of right now. Next comes envelope stuffing and addressing to addresses that I HOPE have not changed since last year.

And why do I think all this work is a tradition? Because of the feedback is that everyone enjoys the calendar that is current and is counting on next year's also. I suspect that the family calendar is a tradition that that will continue until I can no longer totter to the computer. And by then I hope that someone else will take responsibility for the tradition.

20 comments:

Giggles said...

Wonderful tradition. My brothers ex started doing this for him with photos of his children. His current wife continues the tradition because it's his favorite gift and always brings tears to his eyes! Really special...a wonderful keep sake too!

Hugs Giggles

anthonynorth said...

Family traditions are so important. We began many when the kids were young, and now as adults, when they visit, they demand they contine. Then there's the traditions that go down many generations, such as the recipe for trifle at Christmas, now on its 4th generation that I know of.

Reader Wil said...

A great idea of yours to create all those beautiful calendars. It must be a very pleasant job and rewarding.

Maggie May said...

They look so professional. Really good idea.

keith hillman said...

What a wonderful idea. I'm sure the family are eagerly awaiting the 2009 edition!

Laini Taylor said...

That's wonderful, Granny! I used to do a small frame calendar every year for my mom, but one year I was too busy, and that was that. I never started again. Too bad. It's a great way to sum up the year!

Tammy said...

We have done this at snapfish.com. You have gone the extra mile and made these very special. You having been working very hard, but it is a labor of love. Great tradition! HUG

Becca said...

I did these when my son was small -back in the old days before computers! Now I do them of the two doggies :) They're a big hit!

Yours are just gorgeous! A wonderful tradition for families.

Marja said...

Oh they are beautiful My brother is coming over for christmas to NZ and he is bringing me a .....calender with all family pictures. I look so forward too it. He only didn't know yet how to connect them to each other. So now I can tell him but you probably need a special long hole puncher

Lucy said...

Oh Gran! I HAVE to start doing this!! I can't believe you actually construct it all! I know there are places u can send photos and they put it together.That YOU do all this all your self is amazingly impressive and makes it even more chockfull of Love and thoughtfulness!
One of my clients brought me one of her grandchildren that she received and I was blown away by what a great gift it made! Now seeing yours, I know this is a tradition I would love to begin! thank so much and YOU deserve a standing ovation! xoxo

Alisa said...

I know how hard,yet rewarding this can be...three years ago I did one of my kids for the grandparents and have never heard the end of it...now I do one every year by request. They love it. I like your idea of putting in special dates...great idea I'll have to incorporate next year.

alister said...

I enjoyed that so much! What a great idea, a really neat tradition :-)
missalister

nonizamboni said...

So glad I could catch a glimpse of your calendar! This time of year I wonder about you and how you are coming on this project. What a wonderful tradition and a treasure to receive, I'm sure.
You always amaze me! xxxx
Mary Ann

Rinkly Rimes said...

It must be wonderful actually STARTING a tradition! I wish I could think of one.

linda may said...

That is a great tradition to carry on. I can see it would be a lot of work but very nice and well worth doing and keeping each year. Specially personalized, you wouldn't need a present after getting one of those.

anno said...

Your family calendar sounds like a wonderful tradition -- and I especially liked the idea of adding in significant dates -- providing some common pulse through the year that each member, no matter how far dispersed, can share. It looks like hardly a week goes by (at least in February) without something to celebrate!

if said...

that is very beautiful ..I have designed an "eternal" calendar with one long sheet of thick paper fore each month and put on a piece of "tejuela" that is a wood that is used to cover roofs.

Beth said...

So glad you're back! Yes, the calendars are a wonderful tradition, catching glimpses of the year -- to enjoy for many years to come. The technology is supposed to make this easier, though! :)

BJ Roan said...

This is really a great tradition. I'm going to send the link to my daughter. She would really enjoy a project such as this.

BJ Roan said...

This is really a great tradition. I'm going to send the link to my daughter. She would really enjoy a project such as this.