The Oma Book

The Oma Book

About 6 months ago I embarked on a project.

I had known for years that I wanted to document the stories of my Oma (my dad's mom)'s life. She grew up in Holland and emigrated to Canada when my dad was very young. She lived through a war. She's a spunky woman with a ton of stories. It needed to be done, and I wanted to do it.

Finally, in May of last year, I heard about Heritage Makers. I became a consultant and I started planning my project.

Here's what I did:

1. Together with my dad, I used Heritage Makers' "Life Story" Story Map (a collection of questions/topics to focus on in tellings someone's life story), to interview my Oma. He videotaped each of our interview sessions.

2. I started listing to the video & typing out the stories. (I included notes & questions about the spelling of Dutch names & places, and other details)

3. I would send my typed stories to my parents to review & they would take them with them on dinners out with my Oma, have her read them and correct them and add details.

4. I borrowed photo albums from my Oma & spent some time scanning old photos.

5. I chose an 8.5x11" storybook template from Heritage Makers that I liked the basic look of and went to work uploading photos and organizing them with their stories, into the template, and then altering it as I went.

6. I had family members review the final edit before ordering the book & counting down the days until its arrival at my doorstep!

I was so happy to see the completed project & to be able to give it to my Oma for Christmas. I could see that it meant a lot to her, and it means a lot to her family (each of her children got a copy).

I am so grateful for this wonderful keepsake that I will have to always remember my Oma's life, and that I will be able to share with my children and tell them her stories as they get older.


  1. How does it feel to be the favorite grandchild EVER?

    Sheesh how is anyone ever suppose to compete with that?

    Seriously, such a thoughtful and meaningful gift. I am sure she will treasure it!

  2. Just happened upon your blog, and love this post. You are so thoughtful, and talented. Thank you for sharing!


Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment- I love reading them! :)
~Heather Lynne

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