‘I cre­ate a hand­made birth­day card for my daugh­ter ev­ery year’

Woman & Home (South Africa) - - Live Your Best Life -

AN­GELA EVANS, 44, runs her own clean­ing busi­ness. She lives with her part­ner Michael and their 10-year-old daugh­ter Jorja.

“It started when Jorja was two; I thought it would be sweet to make her a birth­day card in­stead of buy­ing one. I made a train with a photo of di er­ent fam­ily mem­bers in each car­riage and stuck it on the wall so she could see it when she came down­stairs. She loved it. Be­fore her birth­day the fol­low­ing year, she asked me to make an­other.

Now it’s turned into Jorja de­cid­ing the theme – we’ve had uni­corns, fairies and aero­planes. I’m not a nat­u­ral crafter so it can take me a week to make the card, watch­ing Youtube videos on pa­per craft and how to make pop-up cards when she’s in bed. But how­ever many gifts she has, the card is the first thing Jorja looks for on her birth­day, and see­ing her face when she spots it is price­less.

We keep all the cards in a me­mory box, along with other trea­sures, such as the notes Jorja writes to me, pho­tos and her art­works. One year, we also kept a me­mory jar. Start­ing on New Year’s Day, we wrote a note ev­ery time we went to do some­thing spe­cial and put it in the jar. At the end of the year, we took them all out and read them. It’s like a Face­book time­line, but with real items in front of you. Each one trig­gers an emo­tion. It’s not just what we did, but who we were with, what we said, and funny things that hap­pened.

The mem­o­ries that stay with you aren’t al­ways the ones you ex­pect – we’re just as likely to re­mem­ber the slip-ups and sur­prises. But that just makes them even more spe­cial.” w&h

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