Back to Basics - Organize Your Memories and Become a Memory HoarderFor the last couple of subscriber newsletters we have been discussing how to get organized to begin creating a scrapbook, an album, etc. May people would love to make albums but are overwhelmed at the thought of starting. Hopefully our Back to Basics series will help you to start or re-start your memory preservation projects.

So the first step is to become a memory hoarder. If you think through your family every generation had that person that kept copies of all the photos, documents, china, antiques, etc.

My Great Aunt Kay was that person in my family. To this day you will find snippets of paper in china tea cups telling you how old it was, who owned it, and how it came to be.

I am hoping to step up and fill that role for my generation. In this day of the digital age it is actually harder to do this. All our photos and video are scattered and memorabilia is becoming a thing of the past. So before you think of creating an album take some time to pull together everything and put it all in one location.

So first choose where you will keep all of the memories for storage.

    • Digital Files and Folders.  Will you be making a digital project, scrapbook, video?  Then files for each event (vacation, activity, school trip, etc) may be the easiest way to go.
    • Physical Storage.Do you plan on making a traditional album or scrapbook?  Then you need a box where you can organize everything by event (vacation, activity, school trip, etc.) that is dark in color to reduce the damage by sunlight. Depending on the size of your photos and memorabilia you can use shoe boxes.  Hat boxes are also great if you need something a bit larger.

Now, locate everything and gather it all together.


    • Your Photos.
      • Download all the photos from your camera and cell phone.  Print or save them to your storage location.
    • Memorabilia.  Gather all of the memorabilia for that event.
      • Digital.  Scan all the memorabilia and add the images to your folders.  Many printers now scan or you can take photos of the items.  Once you have the images you can add the memorabilia to a memory box if desired.
      • Traditional.  Store all your memorabilia with your photos.  Hint: If they do not fit you can save them elsewhere but put an index card with your photos with what memorabilia is associated with this event and where it is located.
      • Hybrid.  If you plan on having both digital and traditional elements in your album I still recommend scanning.  Hint:  Add a file to your folder that lists what memorabilia goes with the event, where it is located, and dimensions.  Dimensions lets you leave the correct amount of space on your pages to fit the memorabilia.

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    • Photopass Photos.
    • Other Photos.
      • Do you have all the photos you want?  Did your spouse also take photos or videos on their camera or phone?  Did you meet up with friends that took photos you wold like copies of?  Did you get a hard copy of a ride or restaurant photo?  Where else could photos be?
      • Go out and get copies of these photos to and add them to your folders.

I think that is enough for today.  Don’t worry about naming files or keywords.  Just get the photos, videos, and memorabilia located in one place.  Knowing where everything is over half the battle.  Now you at least know you have not lost anything.

And don’t forget to back up!!! However you back up your digital files is ok.  External Hard Drive, Cloud, Backup Service, CD’s, etc.  Just do it!

Next time we will be talking organization and keyword.

I will be sharing my keyword list in next Sunday’s newsletters.  So if you are interested subscribe to get additional content and printable tutorials.

Mary Signature

photo credit: kpishdadi via photopin cc

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