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When we ask people about memories of their childhoods, itís not the stay in a fancy hotel or the fabulous dinner at an expensive restaurant they remember. Instead itís how their dad whistled a corny tune while standing at his workbench or the smell of cookies baking. Itís the ordinary things that create the building blocks of our lives. For children, this effect is even more pronounced. Little ones treasure the ladybug on a leaf or bedtime stories while cuddled on daddyís lap. Ordinary things are what create sentimental attachments to the things in the houses where we grew up. Theyíre the things we used everyday, not the fancy item on a shelf.

I would invite you to take pictures of ordinary times at your house. One of my treasured pictures is our son at around the age of four with his little plastic mower trailing behind his father with the big power mower. Another is in that first three colickly months when baby finally slept in painful exhaustion on his fatherís broad chest as they laid back in the recliner. These are the moments parents forget when theyíre in the throes of turbulent teen years.

Along with forgetting the aching tenderness we once felt is forgetting the dream of a beautiful world, safe and warm, bright and eager. We drown in car repairs and new jobs, the big office party and best friendsí weddings. The real reasons for our lives get lost, and we sometimes forget what we really wanted to do.

The big events are certainly important, but itís the ordinary stuff that our lives are made of. I encourage you to take some pictures. Have fun with composing them artfully. Pretend youíre a National Geographic photographer. Share them with grandparents. Print them out and tuck them away in places where you will stumble on them now and then. Maybe make a bookmark of one. Perchance youíll dream again a vision of what you want to be important and lasting in your life.