One of our favorite family traditions is going berry picking together. It first began when we lived in Oregon where they have the most amazing farms and orchards. During the summer we would go almost every weekend to pick berries. Emilie was always the helper, Madeline was the distracted picker and Samantha was the sneaky berry eater. I have so many wonderful memories of us together picking berries for jams, pies and many other yummy deserts.
Last summer we found a farm in Kent that we also fell in love with. We went back many times to pick the latest thing in season. The last time we went together as a family was in October to get our family’s pumpkins for Halloween (I refuse to by them at a grocery store if at all possible!). We had an amazing time and spent the rest of the afternoon in the town of Kent eating and shopping at their library’s annual outdoor book sale. I am a sucker for old books so I was in heaven! I remember picking out books with Emilie and helping her narrow down her pile of art books to just two. Like me, she loved to read. It was a passion we enjoyed so much together.
This weekend, Robbie had to work and so I found myself trying to decide how to spend a fun Saturday with the girls. I realized that we hadn’t done any berry picking this summer so I thought that might be a nice “girls only” outing. My heart started to race, as it does when I do anything again that is tied to rich memories of Emilie. The day was beautiful and so were the blueberries! I quickly realized that my girls were very much the same kind of pickers as they were before. Samantha eating everything she could sneak and Madeline spending her time split between picking and dancing.
After berry picking, we stopped in town and ate some lunch and walked over to the library. They were having their outdoor book sale again so we to walked through it. As my eyes skimmed over the titles, I found myself drawn to find a very different kind of book for me, an art book.
Emilie gave me a wonderful gift as her mom. She taught me how to look for new and exciting ways to create a colorful world to live in. Since her death, I have struggled enormously with crafting with my kids again. I have this brand new craft room Robbie and I built (walls and everything) that I haven’t even touched in the past eight and a half months. As I was looking through these books, I wasn’t just looking for an art book Emilie would have loved….I was looking for an art book Emilie would have picked out to help inspire me to create again.
A cute green book caught my eye and it was exactly what I was looking for! It was called Button Girl! Emilie would have loved it! It was full of creative projects and creations to make with buttons. I flashed back to memories of Emilie and Madeline collecting my left over buttons from projects and trying to come up with a toy they would be allowed to glue the buttons on. Emilie inspired me to be a creative mom with my kids and I know it will be a journey to get that desire back, but I don’t want to lose that gift. I want to honor it. So I bought the Button Girl.