my mom, and her gift to me

when i was young, my parents had a photographer come to our house each year to take photos of the family. these were always relatively formal pics, we'd get all dressed up and sit nicely, and be on our best behaviour. i don't remember these sessions very well, the pictures seem to taper off after i was about six. this doesn't surprise me much, i was a bit of a fireball!
i found a few scans of my favourite childhood pictures, and thought i'd share them here. [thanks to laura for showing hers last week, she inspired me!]

that's me in the middle, looks like i'm dying to get away! looking at these pictures again, i realize how much my baby girl looks like me. it isn't always easy for me to see the resemblance, as she has golden blonde hair + green eyes. but there's her little face, mischievous but sweet. my mom saved that blue dress for me, and i put it on my babe when she turned one. i'm so glad that mom saved her favourite clothes for me, and i plan on doing the same for my children.

i can guarantee that both those burgundy jumpers in the top pics were made by my mom. in fact, they probably are from the same fabric! i love my brother in this collage, his stance up top screams cowboy to me, and his 'oh, dear!' expression down below cracks me up. it's hard to see, but in that bottom picture my sister and i are wearing matching pink terry cloth shorts.
i wonder if it drove her crazy that i always wanted the same clothes as her? this was also the year mom cut my hair like a boy. there i am, rocking the dorothy hamill.

i definitely have image memories of that little oriental-inspired jacket on the top left. do you have memories like that, like a flash of an image, or a feeling, without actually being able to recall an event? i am also quite certain that i squirmed + fought when my mom tried to put my hair in pigtails, just like my little one does. and yet i persist, because it looks so darned cute! i love the bottom pic here, my mom gazing adoringly at us as we have a rare moment of quietude at the beach.

this has always been my fave of the family pics. i found several outtakes from this session at my parents' house. many of them with me wiggling or putting my dress up over my face. these little dresses [made by mom, of course] are still around. my nieces have worn them a few times. check out those ruffled cap sleeves! an of course the lacy knee socks, those were so awesome! i love my mom's dress here, too. i'm sure that she must have made it, the fabric reminds me of a vintage tablecloth [in a good way!] and i think she looks so chic.

the inspiring women in my life. my gaya [bottom left] and nana [bottom right] were the most incredible women i could imagine. both raising larger families, homemakers extraordinaire, amazing cooks. always dressed beautifully, always with a smile, kind words, and impeccable manners. both timeless beauties. i am so thankful for their example.
and my mom, as she + my dad walked me down the 'aisle' at our wedding three years ago. at that moment, i was just about to lose it and start to cry, and she of course had some ridiculous thing to say to make me laugh instead. it's not the best picture i have of the two of us, but it is certainly a telling one. thanks, mom. you always know just what to say!

it was fun to look through these pictures, especially to see my mom's handiwork in many of them. she made the majority of my clothes, casual + dressy, until i was about 11, when i probably told her it wasn't 'cool' anymore [what did i know, anyway?]. my mom taught me to sew when i was young, maybe around 7 or 8, and i am forever thankful to her for that. she likely put up with a lot of whining, complaining, and 'i can't do this'. but she persevered, and now i can't imagine my life without my sewing machine. this week is the kid's clothes week challenge hosted by elsie marley.
i definitely plan on setting aside some time to whip up a few items for my kiddos. i promise to share some finished products here. while i can't imagine i'll ever have the time to make everything my kids wear, i would like for them to have an appreciation of handmade clothing. hopefully they will appreciate it in the same way, looking back at pictures twenty-some years down the road.