Well after letting Grey pick out a book to read yesterday, and he brought over his Text Message book from his Aunt Kitty - it suddenly dawned on me that my very own sister is a real life original in this day and age of Pinspiration.
So in honor of all of my friends and family members who will very soon be delivering new little bundles of joy (to all of you soon to be mommas out there in cyberspace), here is a wonderfully, beautiful, and (as of today, 4/13/13, still) original idea for a gift for the new momma and baby.
My guess is that I'm not the only pregnant lady who makes a "Text Message" list before her delivery date. In the modern world of communication, people in your life tend to be separated into three categories: (A) The people close enough that actually come to the hospital when you have a baby, (B) the people close enough that are on the send-a-text-when-we-go-to-the-hospital-to-have-the-baby-and-then-again-when-the-baby-is-born and then (C) everyone else who finds out in the Facebook status or blog update.
This Text Message list has been given(for both of my kids) to my sister, Kayla. She has the unfortunate duty of typing in phone numbers of people she doesn't necessarily talk to and then updating and responding to their texts throughout the day. She is the girl that sends out the picture of our new baby to say - "hi, this is Tab's sister, the baby is here!" She is the giver of our biggest news and the receiver of a multitude of congratulatory texts. And her middleman duty allows B and I time and energy to dedicate all of our attention to our new little human.
And since my sister is amazingly awesome and creative, she decided to save all of those text messages and responses from our favorite friends and family members on our Text Message List and put them together in little books with photos from their first few days of life for both of our kids.
She used Shutterfly to put the books together and used a combination of pictures she had taken those days as well as pictures from my camera. The books are sleek and simple (Greyson's is a little worn now as we frequently look at it to see 'Baby Booboo').
Both books start with the text messages that Brandon sent from the delivery room to keep our immediate family posted on the progress of our babies.
And the rest of the book is filled with photos and the simple, short messages received via texts from our family and friends. Some messages were funny, all of them congratulatory, and some sentimental. The best part about all of them is that they were the unfiltered responses from our closest friends and family when they received their first word that our babies were born. These were the first reactions to our big news - and since we weren't able to celebrate with them face to face - these messages are a beautiful and meaningful snapshot in time of their excitement.
In means so much to me to have these books that hold all of our friends' and families' reactions on the day our babies were born. On that day, we - as the new parents - are so preoccupied and tired and overwhelmed with love that I hardly remember who responded or didn't, let alone what they said. Our kids' Text Message books is a beautiful way to go back and remember that day and feel all the love and excitement that our babies brought to the lives of those we love.
If you are the friend/sister/mom/family member of a momma to be: consider this a wonderful idea for a gift. Some suggestions if you are thinking of making your own Text Message book:
1. Save the text message responses and know who is who.
[I gave Kayla a list of numbers and corresponding names. She took it upon herself to add the list to her contacts so that she'd know when she looked back through her text messages which messages should be included in the book].
2. Don't be rushed. Waiting a few months to finish the books allows you to collect photos over the first few days and weeks of the baby's life, and also leaves some time for the Momma to become nostalgic about the baby's birth, as that tends to happen when babies grow up.
[Kayla gifted me our kids' books months after they were born - Greyson received his on Christmas when he was 8 months old and Gemma received her on her first birthday].
3. Don't think it has to be some elaborate project, usually the more simple the better.
4. Leave the messages just as they were. I love reading "OMG" and see the funny misspellings or multitude of exclamation points in the messages. These are the unfiltered, first reaction from our friends and family. Their excited response is most beautiful and meaningful to see it saved in its unedited version.
Good luck mommas to be! Sending wishes and love for a fast and easy delivery.
To my Kayabella,
you are amazing. These books make me weepy every time I read them. I feel lucky I get to share your thoughtful idea with pinners around the world. thank you so much for hoarding text messages for months to do this for me and the kids. I have so much payback someday when you get to be the mumma - it ain't even funny.
i love you. SCF
your biggest fan,