Hudson Valley Parent

November 2013

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"My whole philosophy is to keep it simple," she says. "Once items have run their display time, save only those papers you plan to create a keepsake with. Slip them into clear sheet protectors — the ones with three-hole punches — and place them in a binder. If you have a prolific artist, take photographs of treasured works and either include them in your keepsake binder or make a separate photo album." Binders can even be used to create a chronological keepsake of your child's academic career. "Each year have your child fill a page with characteristics about that year: who his teacher is, his favorite subject, accomplishments or awards, best friends and what he wants to be when he grows up. Include a pocket folder for each year where you can store report cards and a few other special mementos," says Sheppard. Recycle Then recycle what you can. Use blank-sided papers for making lists or other sketches. Turn large artwork into wrapping paper for boxes or use as tissue paper in bags. Place colorful designs behind framed photographs to serve as matting. "Colorful artwork goes into a file drawer and is eventually used to create greeting cards and post cards. And scribble drawing we cut, stamp initials on the blank side and then bind with ribbon and give as note pads to family and friends," Elton says. Elton has even taught her son Jacob to put otherwise discarded artwork to literary use. "When he was younger, he drew a lot of pictures of different birds, so I bound those pages and created a bird book, and he really liked that. This past year at school he started drawing a series of original Indiana Jones characters and it carried over into the summer. Now that he's done a lot of pages, he plans to make them into a comic book." Denise Yearian is the former editor of two parenting magazines and the mother of three children. Our readers "I get piles a day, so I can't keep everything. I have a three-ring binder for each of my kids with the laminated sleeves and I keep pieces I feel are extra special. The first picture they drew of our family, the first day of school drawings. The other day I found a paper with a Barbie dressed up on it that said, "This is how beautiful you are, Mom." That was a keeper." — Rachel Napolitano, Saugerties "I use an app called Clipart. It takes a pic of the artwork and then you can order a book of them." — Joleen Bouffard-Wahl, Newburgh "We also have a gallery in the playroom. I hung colorful wooden frames, minus the glass. Then I hot-glued a clothespin on the top front of the frame. You can easily change out and rotate artwork by just unclipping it." — Lisa Hopper, Plattekill "I save pretty much everything in a storage box until the end of the school year, then I go through and make two piles: save for posterity, and scan. The save pile, when done, has to fit into a small box (I use Martha Stewart stack-and-fit storage boxes as they're decorative and can therefore be stored in a visible location). The scan pile then gets scanned at high res and copied onto a disk, which gets put into the year's given box. — AnneMarie Andrews, Poughkeepsie "My son has his own corkboard in his playroom where he can save and display his classwork, art, and other fun things. We also tape important calendars, invites to the inside of cabinets to avoid the clutter." — Kathy McAteer, Milton "I photograph everything, save hand/foot prints, and I use art work for wrapping paper." — Jessica Schaefer, Rhinebeck "I will keep artwork items with their handprints or footprints. If one is particularly special or unique, I'll frame it and put it on their wall. Other items I use an app called ArtKive where you take pictures of the artwork and if you want can them make a book with everything in it." — Malinda Ferko, Warwick "I have my kids pick a few pieces of artwork to hang up in their rooms. I also have a memory box for both of my kids for extra special things. They both decide what goes into their boxes." — Chris Ruger, New Paltz "I keep a portfolio by grade, and make sure my child is in the decision process. I've explained that we cannot keep everything, but we will keep what is extra special and we decide that together." — Angie Doty Raines, Florida Hudson Valley Parent 29 n

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