Our Rural Roots

My Grandma's Photo Albums

Blogger Jennifer Campbell shares why she has been filling desk drawers with photos of several generations of family members even though her sweet granddaughter may be too young to enjoy the pictures now. (DTN photo by Jennifer Campbell)

One of my most vivid memories is sitting in front of my grandma's secretary desk, opening the bottom drawers and pulling out her old photo albums. I could sit for hours looking through them and asking questions.

When my oldest blessed me with the grandma title, it took me back to those old photo albums. I immediately felt the urge to dig out all of my boxes full of pictures and put them in a place this new generation could enjoy.

So, I've been filling my desk drawers with pictures of her mom, my daughter, growing up and pictures of great-grandparents she will have never met. There will be snapshots of our family working together on the farm, showing cattle, attending tractor pulls and county fairs. She will see trips to Disney World and wonder why we camped in a pop-up trailer during a rainstorm. I will explain that farmers travel when weather allows, and she will understand, because her dad is a farmer, too.

It is the everyday pictures that tell a story I love most -- those that make me ask questions and make me want to laugh or cry. I want to see what the person taking the photo loved about their life and the moment in time they wanted to stand still forever.

My sweet granddaughter may be too young to enjoy the pictures now, but they are out of those old boxes buried deep in the closet. They are ready for us to spend hours laughing at and telling stories over when she is ready.

PRINT THE PICTURES! Print the posed family photos, the silly pictures, the ones of kids covered in mud, the hundreds of cow and tractor scenes. Print the not-so-good, kind-of-blurry pictures, too, because sometimes, even they can trigger a memory that hugs your soul.


Jennifer (Jent) Campbell writes and sorts photos from a seven-generation Indiana family farm. She also writes a blog called Farm Wife Feeds (https://farmwifefeeds.com/…). Follow her on X @plowwife and on the podcast @girlstalkag