Compiling a scrapbook throughout the pregnancy and adoption process is a great therapeutic tool, not to mention an amazing keepsake. A scrapbook is a fantastic way to give place to your emotions and feelings, while being able to remember all the good and heartwarming times you had through your pregnancy, such as meeting the adoptive parents for the first time, and so on.

Here are some things to include in your adoption scrapbook:

Pregnancy: Try documenting the changes your body is going through. The most common method is by taking pictures. Then, in your scrapbook, you can place these pictures side by side and see each month’s growth. The body is a beautiful thing, and so is an ever-changing pregnant body. It is interesting to watch how the body adjusts to carrying and nourishing a baby.

Choosing the Adoptive Parents: Deciding which family to place your child with is a long, heart-wrenching process. It takes complete dedication to do what is best for both you and your child. More than likely, you’ll go through couple after couple as you try to narrow down the potential adoptive parents. Journal and scrapbook this process. It will help you remember your top choices in detail.

Your Hospital Stay: Throughout your hospital stay, there are many opportunities to add to your scrapbook. Discuss with the adoptive parents who gets to keep hospital keepsakes–like the child’s hospital bracelet, for instance. Finding common ground and compromising are two important aspects to keep in mind in order to maintain peace during this process and preserve a healthy adoption family/birth family relationship. Some parents also like to have photos and videos of the actual birth.

Photo and Letter Updates: Pictures and letters from your child and their adoptive family are great things to add to your scrapbook. You can also write your impressions and insights of their growth and development right into your scrapbook; a perfect keepsake to look over throughout the coming years.

While these are the most common things to add to your scrapbook, keep an open mind and stay creative. Anything that you would like to remember, put it in the scrapbook. Take the time to look over it often.