Organizing Pictures

I purposefully ignored the drawer with all the pictures when I cleaned out the linen closet last October. I went to Michael’s on Wednesday and told myself I would tackle the picture drawer if I could get what I needed on sale. I had specific items in mind or my plans wouldn’t work. Of course, everything was 40% off. There was one very important item I needed that they didn’t carry, and without it I couldn’t organize the drawer. I went across the parking lot to JoAnn’s and found it for 50% off. Stupid good luck.

Organizing the pictures ended up being the most depressing, infuriating William Morris project I have done to date, and not because the contents of that drawer filled my dining room table and a small console table.

The first item I needed was an album for 4×6 images with a small area for me to make notes. I will never be a scrapbook mom. The boys don’t have baby books and they never will, aside from what I am doing now. And this blog, of course. If I didn’t have this blog, I might be more concerned about having a proper baby book for them. The few times I did try to scrapbook, I became far too obsessed with everything being Professional Level Scrapbooking. Everything had to be perfect-perfect, and I could see it wasn’t a hobby that would bring out the best in me.

I bought these stuffy, kind of goofy photo albums because I thought the would look nice all lined up on a shelf in our bookcases. I bought two in red (seen above) and a green one and blue one as well. Each boy has his own separate album of pictures, both starting with red. I was going to combine them, but I thought this would be nice for them to have (and take) to their own homes one day in the very, very distant future.

Because I hung pictures of Nicholas’s first 4 years for his 4th birthday party, I had all of his pictures ready to go. Putting them in and getting a chance to revisit some memories made me wonder why I didn’t do this sooner. Oh, that’s right, I didn’t make the time to buy the albums. I love that I will have these pictures an arm’s length away (once we buy that final bookcase). What I didn’t love was that I have no pictures of Mikey printed out. Everything is on disks or hard drives. I love digital cameras, but I hate that they have made me so lazy about printing and displaying priceless family pictures.

It’s my goal to have their 4×6 albums current by the end of this summer.

This is the album I bought at Joann’s. I bought two, and two more in navy. This is a great storage idea I got from my sister in-law’s mom. For each of her children she had an album that held 8×10 pictures. The album holds every 8×10 baby or school picture taken, all in one handy location. I started this when Mikey was born, but the album I bought didn’t hold many images and it was babyish and trendy. This is simple, discreet, and will last forever.

The first picture is the hospital picture, in this case Mikey’s. Next, there are baby pictures.

One close up of the face and full body shot. For Mikey, there are both for every month of his life until his 1st year. Then I spaced them out to every three months or so until his 2nd year. And every 6 months after that until he started school.

Then, the school pictures. I start with the class picture. The next picture is his fall picture (head and body, I guess they still do that even for school age children!), and then his spring picture. I love these top loading sheets. They are archival quality and safe for pictures–not just regular old sheet protectors. My favorite part about them is that they allow me to store the extra pictures and image files behind the large 8×10. Now, if someone wants or needs a picture, I know exactly where to look.

(All candid shots go in the 4×6 albums, and we’ll have vacation albums once we (1) take vacations and (2) buy those albums.)

By this point, I was getting pretty excited about my progress. I had finished Mikey’s 8×10 album and Nico’s 4×6 album (which he flipped through repeatedly while I worked on Mikey’s 8×10 album) and was eager to start on Nico’s 8×10 album. I figured it would go quickly since Nico doesn’t have as many pictures. I went through the piles once, twice, three times. I came up with two years of pre-school pictures and a 9 month picture. Everything else is gone. I went out to the office and rummaged through the crazy messed up cabinets but couldn’t find anything. I checked and checked all my files and came up empty. I looked everywhere, but it’s like they never existed.

No hospital picture, no 1st month picture, no 3rd, 6th, or 12 month pictures. Nothing. I don’t know where they can be, and I’m sick over their loss. I plan on doing 5 days of William Morris next week to try to find them somewhere, somehow.

Like the Mister said to me while I was adjusting the dials on the oven so I could stick my head in, it’s not like they were tossed out (hah! not even) or walked away, or lost in a fire. They’re here somewhere.

I soldiered on, even though my heart was no longer in the project. I didn’t even bother wiping the table clear of clutter so I could fool you into thinking I work in a pristine environment. The navy albums I bought were for the athletic pictures. Same concept as the school pictures in the cognac albums. Here is where you store those photo packages your child gets every season. Again, you can store the smaller sizes (and buttons!) behind the larger 8×10. It really is something to flip through these books now that they are all together. With every season they change, grow up.

Since we don’t have the final bookcase yet, I placed everything back into the drawer, although now it’s much neater and organized.

Beyond the embarrassment of losing three years of pictures is the sad, infuriating fact that all of these pictures languished in a drawer because I was afraid to put holes in the wall, too cheap/lazy to go buy frames, and too willing to wait for the “perfect” picture to hang. I found pictures I distinctly remember not hanging because they weren’t good enough. I looked at them on Wednesday and couldn’t believe I worried about that hair out of place or that foot that was accidentally cropped out. They look fine.

Take it from me, folks. Hang your pictures. Pull them out, buy some frames, and hammer the hell out of your walls. Make them look like Swiss cheese because I promise that the lurch in your stomach that comes from hammering a misplaced hole feels better than the sting of lost pictures or missed opportunities. And I have plaster walls, so that’s saying something.

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This post was part of The William Morris Project, a weekly series that details the steps I am taking to create an intentional home. You can see more of my goals and completed projects here. To learn more about this project, start here.

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Now it’s your turn! Feel free to share how you have lived according to the William Morris quote, “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” Made a plan? Cleaned a drawer? Bought a sofa? Tell us about it with a link or comment. A few guidelines:

                  1. Please link to a specific post, not a general blog address.
                  2. Your post must relate to your efforts to create an intentional home. I have a delete button, and I’m not afraid to use it.
                  3. No links to giveaways, please.
                  4. Let’s use this weekly link up as an opportunity to gather inspiration and motivation. Click links. Discover new people. Say hi and good job. I know I will.



Comments
62 Responses to “Organizing Pictures”
  1. Charlotte says:

    oh no! I really hope that they turn up. I know that sinking feeling only too well.

  2. April says:

    I’m a picture saver too. Right now I’m waiting until we move into our new residence in a month before framing and hanging anything, which seems like a legitimate excuse. But why haven’t I hung anything (literally no pictures are up) in the past nearly two years we’ve lived *here*?!

    I also need to scan the print-only pictures (vs the ones we have digital copies of) so that in the event of a fire we’ll still have them. I also need to back up the scanned and digital photos in a “cloud” somewhere online, since in a fire my laptop and our external HD would both be gone. But that involves research to find the best company, etc.

    We’ve been through a fire so I should know better. Yet still procrastination and perfectionism paralyze me.

    • Jules says:

      I hear you on the procrastination/perfectionism. They go hand in hand! I don’t know what to do for digital photo storage. Definitely some sort of cloud…right?

      • April says:

        At the very least, make a backup copy off of your computer. That way you have a set on your computer, and a set off of your computer, in case something crashes/fries/dies.

        But since they’re in the same location, that wouldn’t help in the event of a disaster. A cloud would be an “easy” way to do it (just upload regularly, can access from anywhere). But if you don’t trust the cloud, the only other thing I can think of is to get another external HD and backup a third set on there, and mail it to someone you trust out of state. Periodically, switch that HD for the HD you have at home and have been updating more frequently. Over time that’s a lot of shipping costs to eat up, but some people find it worth it (those who don’t trust having their personal things online).

        I live in Japan, and though I wasn’t where the tsunamis were last year, that tragedy really affected me emotionally. And my husband lost everything in a fire when we were in college. (Edited to add: I also lost about 4 years worth of digital pictures in a computer crash during college because I didn’t back them up.) You’d think that’d be enough to get me motivated! :(

  3. Sarahmia says:

    I know this is probably something you’ve already thought of, but did you pull the drawer out to make sure the missing photos hadn’t fallen down behind it? This happens to me ALL the time.

    I hope they turn up! I like the idea of giving your boys separate albums, that’s a really nice touch :)

    • Jules says:

      I did. What I didn’t do was check the drawer directly above it. Maybe they got caught on that? They have to be in the office. If not, I have pictures of Nico that I took. Still annoying, though!

  4. hayleyraine says:

    Crikey, you girls do contemplate your navels, don’t you! Just do it – whatever it is. Remember you’re only here once, and for a very short time as well. Seize the day and make the most.

    • Jules says:

      I agree that I should do something, whatever it is, and not worry about perfection. Perfectionism and the paralysis that comes with it has been my enemy since I was a child, and I’m working on it. This has been a great lesson for me, as was the death of my friend’s parents last year. We’re all human and we all have areas of improvement. Paralysis by analysis is totally my thing. What’s yours? ;)

      That said, I think the navel gazing comment is unfair. You can say that about me if that’s the impression I give you from my blog, but you don’t know my readers well enough to make that sort of judgment about them.

  5. Oh, I know exactly what you’re talking about. I started scrapbooking–and, you know, I wish I had known what a horrible trap it would be for someone like me (who seems like you). I haven’t put anything coherent together since I had to stop scrap booking and I think I am going to regret this a lot. Thanks for the wake up call.

    I hope you find your pictures soon–but find them you will. Hugs.

    • Jules says:

      Thanks, Alana. Yes, scrapbooking wasn’t for me. I got too hung up on the unimportant details.

      • April says:

        Have you guys considered photobooks instead? They’re like scrapbooking, but on the computer so it’s so much quicker and easier. And you can make duplicate copies with the click of a mouse!

        Personally I like MyPublisher (good quality, great coupons), but there are several good companies out there.

        • Jules says:

          I’ve looked into them, but haven’t taken the time to see which one would be a great fit. It’s definitely the way I plan to do vacation albums or special event albums. The only reason I like the 4×6 photos is because I can then use them at parties, scan them, send them to school for class projects, etc.

          So My Publisher is good? My Mac comes with a publisher, but I know nothing about it.

          • April says:

            From what I’ve heard, Apple uses MyPublisher but slaps their own Apple logo on it. Compare their prices to the prices listed on MyPublisher, because you’ll end up with the same product.

            I like MyPublisher because it’s one of the top dogs in the photo book world (good service, great quality, etc.) AND they have great—and frequent—coupons. If you time it right you can save yourself a boatload of money. Sometimes it’s buy one get one free, sometimes it’s extra free pages, sometimes it 60% off, sometimes it’s 40% off of gift certificates (which you can then use toward a project). Sign up for their e-mail coupons and get a feel for what they send you before committing to buying a book. That way you’ll know how much you’re likely to end up spending (rather than just looking at the sticker price).

            I also like the variety in options. Tiny mini-books all the way up to big coffee-table books with fancy dust jackets, all of which you can “share” the digital version of the book via a link with family and friends (great to include in an annual update letter… and if they like it they can order themselves a copy). They also do cards and canvas prints to hang on your wall.

            The software is also easy to use, which I like. I’m decently tech and design savvy (I do some publication design as a side job), but it’s nice to be able to just plop things in without much effort sometimes. :)

            But you’ll probably want to do your research. Some people like Blurb better, etc. This site might help you: http://www.photobookgirl.com/reviews/

  6. Amy says:

    There’s nothing like books, and being able to flip through memories. Sigh. Also, I love the idea of separating your kids photos out. Good luck solving the case of the missing photos . . .

    Of course, now that you mention it, I need to get my photos in books. Especially momentous occasions (currently on my computer), need to be turned into actual books. Procrastination is not our friend–you would think I would learn after having a hard drive crash and losing 4 years worth of photos. Maybe I’ll catch on tomorrow.

    • Jules says:

      I had a hard drive crash, too. And yet, the pictures are still sitting there! I’m really happy with the way the 8×10 album for Mikey turned out, and Nico’s 4×6 album makes me excited to work on Mikey’s. Everything happens for a reason.

  7. They’ll turn up–when you’re NOT looking for them–isn’t that how it usually works (I say after a recent lost passport incident)? I love the 8×10 binders and never would have thought of those. Now I need to go get something similar! I did hang this year’s photos, but mostly I stopped ordering photos that I know I won’t do anything with. I just get 5×7 prints now. I honestly prefer candid photos, so we don’t have nearly as many professional photos of the kids (especially the 3rd! ha!) and I rarely buy the spring school photos (unless the fall one was really bad). But mine are all floating about in random envelopes, stuffed in boxes or drawers or just shoved on a shelf in the basement somewhere. What makes me really sad is that most of the digital photos of my oldest are held hostage on the hard drive of an old iMac, and I haven’t found someone who can rescue them.

    • Jules says:

      I don’t have nearly the number of professional pictures for Nico that I do for Mikey. I prefer the candids, too, and I got to the point where I was able to take better pictures of the boys than the minimum wage clerks at the mall. Of course, I’m nowhere near as good as a professional photographer. The very few truly professional pictures I have of the boys are gorgeous.

  8. Rita says:

    This is a great reminder to take care of photos now rather than later. Like Melissa, I’ve got some trapped on a dead Mac. Probably won’t get them back. I’ve been way too lazy about getting prints made. Appreciate the nudge (OK, shove!) to make this a higher priority.

  9. Courtney says:

    Just yesterday, I wrote down “Update baby books” as one of my summer goals. I am not a scrapbooking mom, either, and I also have a drawer crammed full of photos of two growing boys. I used to religiously keep 4×6 albums, but I couldn’t keep that and blogging going at the same time. (I have a private blog that serves as our family album.) I am behind on printing our family blog into book form – like 4 years behind – and then there is that dreaded drawer, which will barely close now. I’ve procrastinated on attacking it because the end result will be not be perfect: some of our memories are on the blog, some are on printed photos. As you said, “Stupid, stupid, stupid.” I just need to do it. Good enough is better than not at all. I’m sure that once I dig into the drawer, I will discover photos missing as well, and I will want to stick my head in the oven, too. If nothing else, it will be nice to know I’m not alone! Thank you, as always, Jules for your keeping-it-real inspiration. When I attack my own photo drawer (after I find albums like you suggested, of course!) I will be sure and link it up here. Nothing to link up this week – my house is a wreck with the end of school upon us.
    Groan.

    • Jules says:

      Good enough! That’s what I need to keep reminding myself. Nester built her whole blog on that philosophy. I need to start practicing what she preaches! I’ve also wanted to put my blog in book format, but haven’t. Again, I didn’t think it all the posts were “good enough” to spend on printing, so I had these grand plans of only printing out the good ones. Silly.

    • April says:

      How do you turn a blog into a book? Do you have to copy/paste everything and format it yourself, or is there a service that does it for you? What about all of the comments in each post?

      • Jules says:

        There are blog-to-book companies out there (can’t remember the name of any now) and whether you publish comments is an optional feature, I believe.

      • Courtney says:

        I’ve done mine through thecutestblogontheblock.com and have been happy with the books I’ve ordered. You just upload your blog and they send it to you – easy. You can choose to print comments or not.

  10. WittyMermaid says:

    Love the idea that the albums can double as file systems. Great way to store things like their shot records and social security cards. I also plan on handing over albums when my kids are older, so will be nice to have everything in one place. This is a great project to tackle this summer.

    • Jules says:

      It’s totally a summer project. I was just talking to my sister in-law this morning, and we decided this would be the summer of pictures. We’re getting this done.

  11. Susan G says:

    So sorry! Hate to see you beat yourself up. I hope you find them soon. Once the books are on the shelves you will see those kids looking at them often – it’s really nice to see! My girls and their friends are constantly looking at their scrapbooks. (Yes, I’m one of “them”. Turns out to be a great creative outlet for me.)

    Thanks for the reminder about printing photos – I kind of miss just taking the film in and getting pictures. Seemed much easier for some reason!

    • Jules says:

      I’m doing much better now that I’ve had a whole night to sleep on it. When I wrote the post, I was only a couple hours away from my annoying discovery. It’s why I try to avoid posting until I have a bright side, because there always is one. Unfortunately, I was under a time crunch!

      In a lot of way, film was easier, definitely.

  12. Pamelotta says:

    My stomach just went a little funny on me after reading that post. Not only do I have twice as many children as you, I’ve been taking pictures of kids for 13 years now and they’re everywhere. In cabinets, drawers and boxes in all sorts of places. Tossed willy nilly and even strewn at times. I’m starting to hyperventilate just typing this. And that’s just the pictures that I have physical prints of. If my computer dies or I lose my phone. Oh, God, I can’t even think about it anymore.

    I am proud of you, though. Maybe it’ll, I don’t know, motivate me.

    • Jules says:

      It can get overwhelming, especially if you are a perfectionist. My goal is to let go of the need for everything to be perfect. That’s 99% of my problem!

  13. Jenn says:

    An audible sounds just escaped my mouth. Oh, losing photos – but they are somewhere, you’ll find them.
    This is a project that I’ve been wanting to do too, but haven’t been able to find the albums that I want (same as I had, ‘school days’…they’re out there somewhere).
    It will be great when you find those photos, lost treasures will be accounted for.
    Good luck over the next week.

  14. Meg says:

    Oh man. This is really a sore spot for me, too: I haven’t completed (or started) baby books for either kid. Since the oldest is almost 7, I think the ship has sailed. The other day, I realized that I don’t have one picture in the house of the baby. Well, unless you count the hospital picture in the drawer. And what the heck to do with the sports pictures?? So you’ve totally helped me in one area — now I know what to do! And I can start formulating a better plan for the future, thanks to your well-organized binder idea, so thanks for that, too.

    Happy hunting! You WILL find those photos; I just know it!

    • Jules says:

      This is so me. I have that gallery wall of pictures, but 99% of them are 12 years old, from when we first got married. I told my husband this morning (he has been begging me to put up pictures around the house) that it’s on like Donkey Kong.

  15. Kirsten says:

    love the 8×10 album idea…Joann’s for me this weekend!!! (hope they’re still on sale)
    my kids pics are all over, you’ll find them eventually!

    • Jules says:

      The albums are pretty nice, too. With the sale I think they were around $10. I like that they are three ring binders so you can add lots of pages without much fuss.

  16. jeanne says:

    This seems to be a touchpoint for everyone! We all can relate. I too suffer from perfectionism and it is a curse! Thank goodness my daughter plows in to everything without the hesitation, analyzing and angst that I bring to the party. I discovered scrapbooking when my daughter made her first communion and had to make a “Jesus” book. It was such a shockingly enjoyable experience (albeit time consuming) for me to help her do it that I continued with memorializing her 3, 4, 5th grades and am now doing 6th grade. She is in 8th, so you see the problem with keeping up. However, she loves to look at it, and it is a great place to put her school poetry, pictures of her with projects we threw out, my notes with memorable quotes from her, photos with teachers on the last day of school, first day pictures, etc. I like the design element and all the colored paper to work with. But, I know it isn’t for everyone. Interestingly, her school stopped the Jesus book tradition since the end product ranged from creative memories binders that you needed a wheelbarrow to bring to school to a few pictures on loose leaf with some writing. Parents complained it was too much work for them. It’s too bad I think. My daughter has a great note in her book from her non-religious father about forgiveness. That’s priceless.

    Jules, send up some prayers to St. Anthony. HE DOESN”T FAIL YOU!!!! You will find your photos. Let me know when you do.

    • Jules says:

      I love, love, love the idea of a Jesus book. I saw some pretty white albums at the store, and I almost bought two so I could keep pictures of all the boys’ sacraments and memorabilia in there. I still might do that!

      p.s. I laughed out loud at the wheelbarrow comment!

      • Jeanne says:

        You know, I love love love her Jesus book too. If I ever get ambitious I will snap some photos of it on my phone and email them to you. I swear its not like watching someone’s home movies. You would have an awesome Jesus book.

  17. reba says:

    each of my kids has one 11×14 frame on the wall and i swap out the most current professional pic we have of them. we also do the 8×10 album but add report cards and stuff so for each year i have the school picture (or whatever professional pic from before they were in school) the class picture on reverse side, then a protector with report cards or any awards then a protector with sports/ activity photo the same kind you have above with the indv. and the team.
    i keep them in a notebook on the shelf and the kids love to flip through them. this is the closest to scrapbooking momma’s gonna get

    Do not beat yourself up over losing pictures, you will find them or you won’t hating yourself won’t change that. you’ve already made the important step that’s getting a system so it won’t happen again. my mom left my entire baby book behind when she moved after her divorce and i don’t love her any less because of it :D

  18. Lisa says:

    I have the same problem. My mother is a world-class scrapbooker, and has 40+ scrapbooks of our entire lives, from my grandmother’s childhood in the 1920s onward. I have no centralized spot or even method of keeping printed pictures. I have thousands of pictures stored on SugarSync, but I am embarrassed to admit that I have very few pictures of our early married years or my firstborn, and those I do have I don’t even know where they are.

    I really should make this a Wm Morris project of my own. It seems insurmountable.

    • Jules says:

      It does, but once you get started it’s better. I think the trick is to devote a week or so to it and be gentle with yourself (*cough*). If you go into it knowing it won’t happen overnight, ti’s better.

  19. Ellen S says:

    Pictures – they terrify me, I’ve got such a mess. I did do scrapbooking, but it was easier with one than it is with 3 soon to be 4. I try to ignore them and hope they’ll organize themselves, but you just made me realize they won’t. Sniff. Thanks for the pressure! LOL

    • Jules says:

      That’s what I’m here for! ;) Good for you on even starting to scrapbook! That whole hobby (which is incredible and produces such a gorgeous final product) always intimidated me to bits!

  20. Lisa in Seattle says:

    Those photo albums are turning out great! That’s such a clever idea, using the extra storage behind the photos. I know you will find the pictures that have gone walkabout.

    I would not presume to tell you how to feel, but it sounds like you are berating yourself pretty hard about not doing this project earlier. If we were talking in person, I might gently say to you, “You’re not stupid for not doing this earlier, or arrogant, or any of those things. At most, you may have underestimated how much pleasure you would get from revisiting the memories while you organized the pictures. There is plenty of research suggesting that we are not very good at accurately predicting what will make us happy.” You learned something about yourself *and* now you have these lovely, well-organized albums!

    • Jules says:

      Oh, I know. I never write a post when I am angry because I know I’m a “sleep on it” kind of girl. I always try to wait until I have a bright side to share, but this time I didn’t. If I could rewrite or delete the post, I would. Oh well. :)

      I don’t know that arrogant is the right word, but it’s something. There are a few pictures that I remember not hanging because of this or that (all silly: hair out of place, foot cropped out, etc.) and that is something. If not arrogant, it’s demanding or picky or something.

      The bright side–one of many!–is that yesterday was a huge learning lesson on my levels. I’m excited to move forward with all the projects I have in mind!

      • Lisa in Seattle says:

        Oh my gosh, I would never suggest rewriting or deleting it! Your honesty about how you were feeling probably struck a chord with many people and helped them explore what might be holding them back in this or other areas. I am probably over-sensitive to seeing people being so hard on themselves because I beat myself up all the time over everything, and I am driven to try to comfort *you* in a way I would not do for myself.

        • Jules says:

          I know you weren’t suggesting I delete it. :) But, you are so right in that I beat myself up. AND…Mikey is taking after me. I never beat myself up in front of the boys (that I’m aware of) but he is so demanding of himself and so intolerant of his own mistakes, that he’s obviously inherited some of my 1st child perfectionism. So, yeah, I’ve got things to work on. :)

  21. Losing photos … I feel sick thinking about it, because I lost an entire year’s worth of photos (including our 10th anniversary trip to Hawaii) because somehow I deleted them off my computer and failed to store them on the external hard drive first or make CDs (my second backup). Don’t ask me how I neglected to do either of those things. It defies logic.

    • Jules says:

      Yeah, sometimes you have to chock it up to a mind boggling nightmare of a screw up. I don’t know how I’ve misplaced Nico’s pictures, either. O_o

  22. You mean I’m not a terrible mother if I don’t put all the photos on perfectly crafted scrapbook pages? This is a huge load off my mind.

    I have hardly any photos printed and all of my digitized photos are competely disorderly. I need to organize the files on the computer and back them up. This will be no small feat as there are five years worth. And lots of duplicates because we always download them, then make copies to crop so we still have originals to work with later.

    Then I must deal with getting them in books. I have Creative Memories albums all ready to go, but have been seriously pondering just getting books printed online. Or going the route you did, which is awesome by the way.

    • Jules says:

      I felt I was a terrible mother for a long time, too, which is silly. Once I accepted that it isn’t for me, I realized that it doesn’t mean I can’t have some sort of simple album. That’s where my brain can act broken. For some reason No Scrapbooking = No Albums.

      I’m actually so glad yesterday happened.

  23. May says:

    I feel your pain on this one! I once had to play catch up from 3rd to 12th grade in my daughter’s album. I am not sure how that happened because I had been fairly successful using New Year’s Day during movies and games with the family to work on the kids’ albums. I must have started with the other two kids each time somehow.

  24. MemeGRL says:

    You are awesome. It never once occurred to me that they make 8×10 photo albums.
    My mother always (so so sensibly) ordered the 5×7 photo packages when I was growing up, and had them in almost a shadowbox frame, so they are all there, from a grainy enlargement of me aged 18 months, straddling my wooden giraffe on wheels, straight through K-12, sorority, and college graduation. Now everything is 8x10s and I was doing the same with my kids’. But–it’s a hassle to take them out to see the little guy ones.
    Seriously, a game changer for me, as embarrassed as I am to say so. Thank you. Have a great weekend. And do share when those other big ones show up.

  25. hennymats says:

    Oh I can so relate! I got my DSLR when my oldest was a few months old. Ever since the number of photos I take has exploded. Ugh. Luckily I do manage to put together annual family photo books – the digital kind, mind you. We do extra copies for the grandparents as Christmas gifts and I really, really try to update my current photo book frequently, so I don’t run into backlogs of more than a few months. It’s a challenge, but I too found that sometimes you just need to get started and not worry too much about the perfect layout/photos/text or whatever. Now, the only thing I absolutely can’t figure out is how on earth do I get more (ok, ANY) pictures of myself in there when I don’t like to be in front of the camera?! Ugh.
    Anyhow, I can really recommend doing digital photo books – I’ve tried pretty much every company available here (Germany) but have found blurp to offer the best layout choices, and not so cheesy backgrounds and such (though I prefer a simple, clean, white look anyway). But then again, we don’t have that many school/athletic and other pics here that I would need to scan, because those would totally sit in a pile or drawer….

    Good luck :)
    Swenja

  26. Sarah says:

    Since my personal experience with lost things is that they are usually hiding in plain sight, I was wondering if the missing photos are the ones hanging on your walls? Or hiding behind those pictures? I know I’ve sabotaged myself trying to keep like things together, only the end result is I’ve squirreled it away so well, I’ve hidden it from myself.

    And I love your binders. It’s the most efficient way to store recipes, so why not photos? I love the simplicity of them, and how just like with the old-school tacky (gluey?) albums, they start conversations, and reminiscing, and laughter. I LOVE sitting around with family looking at old photos. Especially when they don’t read like a book, and you have to ask what on EARTH is going on. Great way to store memories, without the huge time sink, and Nico is already enjoying your hard work, so I’d say it’s a great success!

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Hi! I’m Jules.

I used to be an attorney, but it made me grumpy. Now I write about life, sweet and savory, as a wife and mother to two small boys. My knowledge of dinosaurs knows no bounds.

You can read more, including the meaning behind the name Pancakes and French Fries here. And, yes, I really am phenomenally indecisive.