Friday, March 18, 2016

preserving family history (family stories) NOW

I just read a beautiful article about family history.  Maybe you don't think of yourself as a family historian, maybe you don't research ancestors, but preserving photos and memories (you could call them the stories behind the photos) really is family history.  

It's the story of your family now.  The history in progress.

As I've mentioned before, when children connect with their family, they feel a sense of belonging and purpose.  Connections like these are very good for the hearts and souls of both children and adults.

This article is a must-read.  It will give you some perspective on memory-keeping or scrapbooking, with inspiring gems like this:
  • Our stories bind together the past and present, give a glimpse of the soul, and help our children master the art of listening. What Children Gain When You Open Up
  • Bruce Feiler, author of The Secrets of Happy Families, asserts that “knowing more about family history is the single biggest predictor of a child’s emotional well-being.” 
Read this inspiring article, "The Role YOU Can Play in Family History Right Now" by Rebecca Cooper at Simple As That here:

Memory-keeping, family history, scrapbooking...  Whatever you call it, it has great potential to do immeasurable good and truly impact those around us.  Take the knowledge and inspiration you gain from Rebecca's article and get started on heirloom-quality memory-keeping!  #thereispowerinphotos

I believe that you MUST find something that works for you or it's easy to neglect this important contribution you can make.   I only recommend the best there is, so find the option that's the best fit for you right here and get started now!

I love helping people begin this fantastic journey, so if you have questions don't hesitate to contact me!  

Remember:  these stories are for NOW.

Friday, March 11, 2016

The Best Kind of Retail Therapy

Do you practice "retail therapy"?  Do you know anyone who does?  Today I'm so excited to share with you the best kind of retail therapy, and I guarantee it's something you've never thought of before! 
Retail therapy is shopping with the primary purpose of improving the buyer's mood or disposition. Often seen in people during periods of depression or stress, it is normally a short-lived habit. Items purchased during periods of retail therapy are sometimes referred to as "comfort buys".  -Wikipedia
If you practice "retail therapy," you probably buy shoes or clothes or a pedicure for therapeutic benefits.  (Or maybe ice cream?)  What are you accustomed to doing or buying to improve your mood? 

Let's blow your mind.  

I have a friend who is a therapist who uses memory-keeping in her practice.  She has her patients gather photos and write about their thoughts and experiences.  Guess WHY she does it.  Simple.  It's therapeutic.

It's true!  Did you know that memory-keeping is therapeutic?  

Now I'm not just talking about "scrapbooking" in the way we tend to think of it.  I'm talking about the act of looking at photos and combining them with their stories (our memories)--it actually has a healing effect!  

Memory-keeping is so much more than "doing something" with your photos, doing something "cute," or wanting to pass something on to the next generation and the next.  Memory-keeping is actually GOOD FOR YOU.  It's therapeutic.     

{This photo therapist}--yes, that's a thing--explains it well!  You can find many more sources and many more examples at the {"benefits of memory-keeping" tab} above, too, if you're still feeling a little skeptical.

Reflecting on your own life is cathartic and can bring many great memories to the forefront.  That's one benefit I always find in memory-keeping--we tend to just take pictures of the good stuff, so that's what we tend to remember.  It helps us focus on the positive and reflect on happy times.

What about just taking time to reflect on a special vacation, a family reunion, or a milestone?  How often do you sit down to just enjoy and appreciate?  I would guess that none of us do it as often as we might, and that actually doing it would have a lot of therapeutic results.

If you spend $50 on a pair of shoes that will just go out of style, why not spend $50 (or less) on something that will quite literally increase in value over time?!  

That's what makes memory-keeping retail therapy the very best kind!  (But definitely keep your standards high--only accept heirloom-quality books and pages with a photo privacy guarantee.  See my memory-keeping recommendations here.) 

Who do you know who would love something like this?  You're probably thinking of someone right now. 
"Never suppress a generous thought."  - Camilla E. Kimball
Equally cathartic and therapeutic is honoring those who have passed on.  One shared experience all of us have as human beings is loss.  We have all lost someone dear (or will).  Preserving that life story is priceless.  It can help connect generations, but it can also be a healing experience as you put the tribute book together.  ({Here's my personal experience.})

I haven't experienced the heartbreak of losing a child, but I know people who have, and I know how a storybook has helped to keep those precious little ones close.  I know it can be meaningful for both parents and siblings to have a keepsake of the sweet angel relationship, no matter how brief.

So give memory-keeping as therapy a try!  It truly is therapeutic, whether you create something for yourself or for someone else.  

Our own memories or expressions of love for others through storybooks are excellent retail therapy. 

There are so many possibilities!

Think about it this way:
pedicure: $30
two tickets to a chick flick + popcorn and drinks: $40
new shoes:  $50
scented candle:  $20
a handful of trips to Starbucks: $30
a storybook full of your own photos and memories (or a special keepsake or gift): priceless

Get started {right here}.  It really is the best kind of retail therapy!

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