Friday, November 27, 2015

How do you find TIME for memory-keeping?

I ran a poll here on the blog for about six weeks, asking what the biggest obstacle is to preserving photos & their memories.

61% said TIME
38% said MONEY
And, wouldn't you know, 0% said INTEREST.

On Pinterest, a hashtag I often use is #icanhelp.  It's one of the things I love most about what I do!  So let's see how I can help you today!  You have the interest in preserving your photos & their memories, so let's get you the time.  (We'll talk about money next time.)

First off, it's important to remember that nobody ever "finds" time for anything.  We don't often have 6 extra hours or 2 extra days with nothing to do.  We MAKE time for everything we do.  I attended a women's conference back a thousand years ago when I was in college.  One of the things that was said was:

"If we didn't have too much to do, we wouldn't know what was important."

Don't read on too fast here.  Think about that statement.  We are meant to prioritize.  And it's hard, I know.  I am SO there.  But when we have to prioritize, we learn more about what is really important.  So let your photos and their memories be important, because you already know they are.  

Remember this graphic I posted a few months ago?
One of the things that stuck out to me the most when I did the research for this is that we would have 5 more hours a week if we just stayed away from Facebook.  (approximately)  Or how many more hours if we didn't watch so much TV?  Now, I'm not saying that you should give up Facebook or TV, but what if you just cut your time in half?  Or what if you just took 2 days off from Facebook or TV or sports?   

Or how about the 90 Minutes For Life idea?  What if you just spent 15 minutes a day with your photos and their memories?  I must say, too, that once you get in the habit, it's easy to keep doing.  Enlist help if you need to!  Find a memory-keeping buddy who needs time to scrapbook (or storybook) just like you do and report to each other.  Find a family member who can work with you.  Or I can be your "accountability partner."  There are lots of ways we could "work together," even from far away. 

I'm in a business group called BNI and we have a great member who is a business coach.  One of her fabulous tips that she repeats a lot is, "If it takes more than 15 minutes, it should be on your calendar."  I can't even tell you how quickly my calendar fills up.  I'm a SAHM (a complete misnomer because I'm not home that much!), and usually when someone asks me if I can do something next week, it's already full.  So I can tell you that this tip is absolutely true.  I LOVE memory-keeping, and it is SO EASY with Heritage Makers, and I could happily spend hours and hours doing it.  But when my calendar gets full and I have a memory-keeping project I really need to get done, I put it on my calendar.  Thursday afternoon I am spending two hours on this book, period.  Then I just don't schedule things over it!  It's how I prioritize.  I have too much to do, just like you, so this is how I make sure the important things get done:  calendar it!

How many of the ideas I've gone over so far sound good to you?  Which ones would especially work for you?

There are ten more tips for time-management and simple steps to memory-keeping at the red tab above that says "tips to make it easy."  See which of them help you the most.  

Don't forget:  I offer Scrapbooking For Hire, too!  The details are in the red "Scrapbooking For Hire" tab above--this is just one option.

One of the best things I do to make sure my memory-keeping gets done is I work with other people.  I do several different things.  I host a Scrapbook Day at my home, I set up "digi-crops" at a local restaurant (we all bring laptops and work), and I have used Skype with a friend who lives far away and we both work on our projects.  I also host some online "digi-crops" where we all sit at our computers and work together, checking in with each other and posting what we are working on.  Whatever you do, when you work with someone else, it's easier to get things done because you've committed to another person that you'll be working at the time you've reserved on your calendar.  (If you would like to be a part of my digi-crops, whether you're local or not, contact me and I'll set you up!  My contact information is at the "contact me" tab in red above.)

Which of these ideas and tips will YOU use to MAKE time for memory-keeping?  

Be a Heritage MAKER, not a Photo Keeper.

Friday, November 20, 2015

my AWESOME Christmas greetings this year!

I have come to LOVE the tri-fold brochures as Christmas greetings over the last few years.  (Don't forget, you can customize a template or design something yourself.)  I showed off last year's cards (tri-folds) in this post, which you can read by clicking here.

So even though I do normally go for the tri-fold, this year I wanted to try out a new card called the pop-out card.  See how cool this is??  It's like a gift and a card in one because the center pops out (4 shapes to choose from) to become an ornament.  SO COOL!! 

I really wanted to do one this year!!  Although I could have used a template, I did my own thing.  I made these darling cards.  They're two-sided, you know!
And I made address labels to match!  (Yes, they really DO have my address on them in real life.)

The pop-out cards come in a pack of 12 and they come out to around $2 each.  My Christmas card list is big, and I also thought there probably aren't a LOT of people on it who want my face on their tree every year, so I'm sending the pop-out cards to just a few and then Christmas letters to the rest.  They match, too!  They're made from a product in the business section--flyers.  Flyers come in a pack of 30 for only $13-$14.  So that's a great deal for me!
Again, you can design your own or use a template.  EVERYTHING in Heritage Makers is fully editable and customizable so you can have as much text or as many pictures as you want.  Super cool!

Merry Christmas, indeed!

Friday, November 13, 2015

gift ideas under $25

 With Heritage Makers you can give some really cool gifts without breaking the bank.  If fact, they're so cool that people won't realize they were as "budget-friendly" as they were!  (Be sure to look at the "Club HM" tab above so you'll get the best prices--for free!  Pricing shown in my list below reflects Club HM discounts.)  Remember, all these templates are available for you to use, or you can create your own.  Templates are fully editable, too, so you can customize them however you want.

Here are 5 super neat-o gift ideas!

#1  Playing Cards
54 cards with a high-gloss finish and rounded corners (and it's only 50 cents per additional card if you want to add some)

Family Matching Game

Regular playing card deck with family members' pictures

#2 Flip Books
$11-$13 for the 3.5x5.75 size, or $13-$16 for the 6x6 size
10 double-sided pages (thicker than in our Storybooks) with rounded corners, a wire binding, and protective plastic covers

(click here to scroll through all the pages:

Special books for kids
(click here to see all the pages:

#3 Ornaments
White coated aluminum with two fully-customizable sides.  Various shapes available.  3x3.

#4 Prints for the home
$3 (yup, $3!!!)
11x14 print on archival-quality 100-lb. coverstock paper

(frame and use a dry-erase marker on the glass!)

 (calendar personalized with photos!)
 (subway art print for January home decor; personalize with your name at the bottom)
(or even use as a placemat!!  Free UV coating on request is just one more Club HM perk)

#5 "Car" Magnet
12x18 car magnet (not just for the car!!) 

family weekly planner for the fridge (could personalize with a photo, too)
These are just five ideas--there are a lot more in the Heritage Makers template gallery!  Check them out at then clicking "template gallery" in the upper right, then the blue "browse the gallery" button.  You'll be amazed.  You'll also be the best gift-giver in the family!

Friday, November 6, 2015

Christmas cards & letters MADE EASY!

It's that time of year!  Such a fun time to send and receive greetings to and from loved ones. 

Let me help you ENJOY December!  Get in your Heritage Makers account NOW (or open one at and get those cards or letters done in a snap so they're ready to go out before the busy-ness hits later on. 

Here's a tutorial video I just recorded to help you.  Here's what you'll learn:
  1. First I talk about CREATIVE, UNIQUE, LESS EXPENSIVE alternatives to Christmas cards.  
  2. I show you how to save time by using a pre-designed template (which is still fully customizable, so you can change anything you want!)  
  3. I show you how to order your cards, as well as use the "direct ship" option so your cards go directly to your recipients and you don't have to lick an envelope or buy stamps!  
  4. Last, I show you how to make a card from scratch if you prefer that method. 
You will LOVE card/letter-giving with Heritage Makers!!  Grab a snack and learn a lot in a short amount of time right here, then scroll down to see some examples and prices of cards and UNIQUE cards/greetings!

FLYERS ($13-$14 for a pack of 30 single-sided, or $19-22 if they're double-sided)
I love these for really special family Christmas letters.  You can get really clever, too!

template 95539
template 114391

TRI-FOLD BROCHURES ($14-$16, double sided, for a pack of 20)
These may just be my favorite Christmas greeting.  They are made of a thick cardstock-like paper, so you can fold them in three (they are already scored), tape it closed on the edges, and just write an address on one panel of the brochure, stick a stamp on it, and you're done.

Here's the front or inside:
and the back or outside (notice the panel on the right that folds onto the front where you can write an address):
template 96503

This is actually my own tri-fold card that I sent last year at the left, with some matching notepads at the right which I made to write individual notes to put inside some of the cards. 
 Here's the card (well, tri-fold brochure) when it's open.
And here's the card closed.  I used those cute nativity stamps (digital art) from one of the Heritage Makers art collections and left room for an actual USPS stamp.  But as you can see, no need for return address labels--just put it right on there.  And I left an area the size of a mailing label so I could print out people's names/addresses.  The card IS the envelope!  How fun, right??

Before I show you some traditional cards, you must know that Heritage Makers offers discounts on orders of cards over 25.  This is great for Christmas as well as weddings, retirement parties, or whatever!  Be sure to check out the total savings from the Large Order Discounts--they're in the tab above called "discounts."

These are the traditional type (folded cards), available in 5x7 or 4x6 or 5x5.  Envelopes are included. (FYI: The 5x5 size is the only size that can't be direct-shipped due to restrictions from the postal service.)  Here you're just seeing the fronts.

I think this next one is cute because it's to a grandchild from grandparents and just has her name with some of Heritage Makers' digital art instead of the traditional family photo.  There's SO MUCH you can do with Heritage Makers!!  I love the possibilities.
Here's the preview of this last card so you can see the thumbnails of each of the four panels of the card.  Remember, this is a template (100586) but it's still fully editable.

And now the last group of options for Christmas greetings.

These are a little lower in price than traditional greeting cards, but they obviously have half the panels (surfaces) since invitations are two-sided and postcards are one-sided.   I sent postcards instead of regular cards a few years ago, and I thought it was a pretty clever way to save on postage!

Invitations like these come in 4x6 and 5x7.  They come with envelopes.

 Here's a preview of this last one so you can see the other side:

Postcards are only available in the 5x7 size and don't include envelopes.  Instead, they are printed on the back with traditional postcard stuff (place for the address, etc.)
 OR!  How about a postcard from Santa!  This is one of two styles in the Template Gallery, or you could create your own style.

Photo Cards are 82-93 cents but also qualify for that Large Order Discount I mentioned earlier!  Photo cards are 4x8 and come with envelopes.  And look at how much more interesting and PERSONAL they can be--so much more so than your average ones from the nearest drugstore!

Those are all the Christmas greeting options I can think of!  You sure have a lot to choose from, right?  Contact me if you need any advice or help, and be sure you share this post with someone you know who would love it!

Gotta run...  I have some super cool ideas for my own Christmas greetings this year!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

local photographers

If you're looking for a local photographer, word of mouth is usually the way to go--ask friends about photographers they've been happy with. 

Photographers do their own thing in their own ways, so I think it's helpful to contact the photographer and ask not only about price but what happens after the photo shoot.  Do you get a CD to print pictures yourself, or does the photographer prefer printing them for you through his/her own lab?  

I have used photographers in a few different places, so here are some I can recommend:

  • Afton Ridge Photography.  Kristen loves taking any kind of photo--family photos, engagement, individuals, senior photos, babies, etc.  She gives you a CD of your images for you to print as desired (such as using Heritage Makers)!  She
  • Aspire Images.  Michelle is a professional photographer focusing on heirloom photography--wedding, senior photos, maternity, etc., but she also does business headshots, too.  She provides you with not just the raw images but actual high-quality products with your images (canvases, leather albums, etc.) 
Please let either of these gals know that I sent you!!  Kristen has a referral rewards program, and Michelle and I have a referral system.

  • Lovejoy Photography.  Mary Beth does all kinds of photography but especially weddings.  I have not used her services but have seen her beautiful work.  Check it out at her website, where her contact information is as well.
  • Sophia Shay Photography.  Davi takes wedding photos, family photos, senior photos, etc.  Disclosure:  The weekend I was in the area and wanted to book a family photo shoot, she was already booked, so I've never used her but since she's the sister of one of my best friends, I end up seeing a lot of her photos and they are amazing, so I would highly recommend her even though I haven't used her!

Friday, October 30, 2015

Fast, Fun Friday!

Here are some FAST and fun Heritage Makers project ideas!  These are things you can either just publish (order) as-is, or just add a few photos or change a little text and publish right away.  These are fun home decor items, greeting cards, and gift ideas.  Enjoy!  Take advantage of that little "contact me" tab in red above if you have any questions.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Your Gift-Giving Publishing Plan

Believe it or not, fall is in full swing!  That means it's the perfect time to start publishing for holiday gifts!   Raise of hands--who would like to give amazing gifts without the hassle of going to the store???  How great would that be??  Well, you're in luck!  Here's how:

First, let's get organized in three steps:
  1. Make a list of family members and friends you'd like to give gifts to.  Dream big!  Heritage Makers means you can give something really special.  Club HM means you don't have to pay for it all at once!!
  2. Go to and either click "products" at the upper right or "template gallery" (then "browse the gallery" in blue) to get ideas for something those special people on your gift list would really enjoy.  I'll give you some ideas in a bit.  You'll find pricing information at "products," so you can keep track of how many Publishing Points you'll need.  Remember, by pre-purchasing Publishing Points through the free Club HM program, you get access to all Heritage Makers templates and an additional 15-25% off at checkout while you're a member of Club HM.  Club HM details are in the red tab above.
  3. Check out the Holiday Hits publishing specials so you can save even more!!  Publishing specials save you AN ADDITIONAL 10% when you publish a specific item during a specified time.  You can see the current Holiday Hits at the red tab above that says "save an extra 10%"  Holiday Hits change weekly in November & December!
  4. Login to your account, click "my account" and click "publishing points" to see how many publishing points you already have and when they expire.  If you don't have an account, open one at  If you don't have publishing points or need more to complete your holiday publishing, join Club HM for as many months as you'll need.  My contact info is at the "contact me" tab above if you have questions.
Short on time to actually MAKE many projects for gift-giving?  Here are some FUN AND FAST ideas!

This is a personalized Night Before Christmas book.  Add the names of the children (or do one book for each child), pictures of your house, pictures of the kids, etc.  Most of the work is already done for you, so you're just tweaking a few things.  You can see all the pages of the book here:

OR what about the new coasters?  They come in a set of 4, and you can make them all different, or just use this template as-is to get these 4

There are a lot of options for metal prints and wood prints and 11x14 prints suitable for framing.  You could personalize one (such as with a photo or name), or you could order some of these pre-designed home decor options:

You can make a family cookbook, or just use the recipes from a cookbook in our template gallery!  Who doesn't like new recipes?!  This would be a great one because you would only need to take the name off the front and the year off the back.  Easy peasy.
Plus, it's a little 6x6 square wirebound flip book, which is only $13-$14.  What a cool gift!  Here's the preview so you can see all the recipes:

What about the NEW car magnets??  Not just for cars any more!  :)  What about this family calendar for everyone on your list?  Just personalize with the name, change the background if desired, and you're done!  Great on the fridge.  You could even add a family photo!  These are only $21-$24.  You can use a dry-erase marker on it!

Hopefully at least one of these fun ideas jumped out at you as the perfect thing for your gift recipients.  But if there wasn't something *just right*, please contact me (my info is at the "contact me" tab in red above) and I'll brainstorm with you!  I've been using Heritage Makers for almost 11 years, so I have a lot of ideas and suggestions, and I'd be thrilled to help you!  

Plus, when you follow this publishing plan and order all your gifts during the November publishing specials, you can relax in December!!  Now THAT'S a great idea!