One of the things that I have done since my children were little is capture the innocence as they grew. For me, I learned at a VERY early age that people come and go from your life. There is no guarantee. For that reason I have never told my children, “I will always be there to protect you.” We all die and I knew that was not something I could promise. It’s important to me that when I do promise something I at least think I am telling the truth. When my daughter was 5 she told me about what her wedding would be like. It was then when I wrote my first letter to her. I wrote everything she said and what she wanted it to be. From the pink pretty brides maid dresses to the green ribbons she wanted around the waist. It was extraordinary detail. She put her tiny hands together and prayed that it would be just so. I wrote her wished and stuck it in an envelope and then I addressed it, “Open on your wedding day.” Since then I have written many of the letters from the mouth of babes and titled them “Open on your 16th Birthday. Open on this date etc.” They are old enough they’ve begun to open several of them. My goal was that if they lost me before they became an adult they would know how much I loved them, I listened to them and I cherished their words. Sure enough when they open them they cry tears of joy. I am just glad that I am still alive so i can see it. Last year I gave my daughter a homemade year book with all the cliche advice attached I’d given her all these years. Words of wisdom like “be careful where your head goes because your heart will follow and always without your permission.” The photo-book had tons of photos from the 9th to the 12th grade. Photos never submitted to the schools that I took along the way. Hugging friends, wearing costumes, classes, seminars, groups and sports along the way. She held it tight and she cried. Touching someone doesn’t cost anything. It’s just a willingness to give a little bit of your time to do something profound enough that impacts them in a positive way even if it takes time or effort to do it. The reward for both of you will be greater than you ever expected! Now I am working on her college years. Yeah….! Thank you Facebook for IOS Photos!