Friday, January 26, 2018

Photos to Conquer? Start With Organization.

Being consistently caught up preserving your photos starts with organization.  If you have a lot of years’ worth of photos to catch up on, organizing them first is key.  How will you know where to start if you don’t know what you have?

I’ve held on to a great piece of advice I got a few years ago, which was that if any activity takes longer than 15 minutes, it should be on your calendar.  Otherwise, you never “find time” because you’re not making time.  

#1 Set Aside the Time

So the first must-do when organizing your photos is to set aside time for it.  Don't try to "find time" for your photos.  Make time.

Put it on your calendar.  Then honor yourself by keeping your appointment with yourself.  Treat it like you would a doctor's appointment or a haircut.  

If you're not sure how you might make time, consider the first Saturday of every month, or every Friday over lunchtime.

Or, what about this 10 Minutes Daily Plan?  Check it out and see if it might be a good fit for you:

#2 Sort Your Photos

Second, you may remember from {When Photo Overload Becomes Photo Overwhelm} that you really need to SORT your photos.  If you only have 30 photos of your grandfather, just keep them all.  That’s easy.  But if you have pictures of the ground or someone’s finger, if you have 45 pictures of decorating your Christmas tree, just choose your favorites.  

You need to choose a manageable amount of photos to preserve.  

(For tips on what to do with the extras, or tips on how to know what to keep, {click here}.)

You can find a more detailed guide to sorting (and organizing) in the Photo Organization and Preservation video (from a class I taught) below.

#3 Label as You Organize

Third, LABEL!  Everything needs to be labeled as you organize.  Make a note of dates–when was the picture taken?–and who is in it.  

A picture isn’t even worth anything if nobody knows who is in the picture.

Of course, pictures come in two flavors:  printed photos and digital photos.  Let's look at how to organize each.


You can go one of two ways with photos that are already printed.  1- Put the photos in a scrapbook or album.  2- Digitize (scan the photos) to preserve them in a {digital photo-storybook or digital scrap pages}.  Either way, you'll need to get those printed photos organized first.

I suggest organizing physical (printed) photos in physical folders or envelopes.  Be sure you DATE the folders, though!  I suggest a large folder or envelope with the year, then smaller folders inside with months and years.  For example, label a large envelope “1994,” then label smaller envelopes inside “January 1994,” “February 1994,” and so on.  Put your photos in the smaller month envelopes.  Then you’ll know where to find everything since it’s organized chronologically.

Here’s what I did.  

My parents were really good at putting photos in albums and writing a little something next to them.  However, before my mom died, she gave me boxes of mementos that included quite a few photos.  As I prepared to make her {life storybook}, I found photos I’d never seen before and lots of mementos that needed to be scanned so I could make the digital book.  

I sat in the middle of the room and started organizing by decade.  Anything that happened in the 1970s went in one pile, the 60s in another, and the 50s in another, and so on.  After I organized by decade, I got 10 folders for each decade.  I put 1970 in one folder and marked it with a sticky note.  I put 1971 in another folder and did the same.  Pretty soon, I had all my mom’s 72 years’ worth organized!  I could find anything.

If you don't want to preserve the hard copy (printed) photos in a scrapbook or album but instead prefer to digitize them so you can preserve them in a {digitalbook or scrap pages}, you’ll need to first have them scanned.  

Digitizing photos is a great way to share them, and digital books or scrap pages are an easy way to get multiple copies without extra work.  Scanning services can be hired out, or you can do it yourself using several methods--find scanning information here.  

Once they’re scanned, you’re ready to organize your digitized photos.

UPDATE 2021:  For white glove service for your photo scanning, try the Forever Box!  Order a box, get it in the mail, fill it with photos, and send it back.  Your photos will be scanned and digitized, with white glove service, in a couple of weeks.


First things first.  If you don’t know how to get your photos from your camera or phone to your computer, I walk you through it in this 5-minute video.  The video is specific to a phone, but it's similar with a camera.  

Once you’ve gotten that far, you’re ready for the organizing part.

If you're a metadata guru, by all means:  Do your thing.  If you are a person with a camera who loves pictures, consider this simple approach (or watch the video below for a walk through all of this):

Digital photos add a little bit of an extra challenge because they’re files.  As such, they have file names, like IMG_0889.  Your computer will automatically alphabetize your files, which puts them in chronological order.  I actually don’t recommend you go in and change the name of your files.  (Unless you've already mastered a system where you can do that.  Most people struggle with it.) 

Sure, you could change IMG_0889 to firstdayofcollege.jpg, but the problem with that is that when you go back to find it you may not remember what you called it.  And triptothebeach.jpg might be from 1999 or from 2017.

However, if you get a new camera or have some photos from your phone and some from your camera, your files will not automatically be listed by date since they have different names.

My suggestion is to keep the original name of the file, boring as it is, unless you need to add a little something to keep it in chronological order.  For example, my father-in-law and my sister-in-law and I always share photos after we get together.  My father-in-law’s come to me as DSCN_1234, and my sister-in-law’s come to me as 100_1234.  So in order to use my photos and theirs and keep them all in order, I will rename them all to fall in line, like DSCN_1111, DSCN_1112, etc.  Sometimes I will add a little something on the end if I am running out of numbers, like DSCN_1113a, DSCN1113b, etc.

Hooray!  My Photos are Organized.  Now What?

After you’ve organized your photos, you’re ready to preserve them–you’re ready to save them in a tactile way that people can see, hold, and love.  This allows the photos to be interacted with, and that’s how memories are preserved and connections are made.  This is the only meaningful way to store a photo.

Just don’t forget that after you’re done patting yourself on the back and jumping up and down now that your photos are organized (which you should do!) you need to keep doing it.  Don’t let the photos you take this month and next month stay on your camera until 2027.

A wide variety of high-quality products from the heart can be created and published
{following these steps}.

There are a lot of options for preserving your photos in print (publishing them).  I’ll be a broken record again and just say that you MUST use a high-quality way to preserve your photos You don’t want your book or album falling apart in 5 years.  And you MUST find a memory-keeping method you actually enjoy doing.  It makes preserving photos and memories so much easier!

One of my favorite methods is a digital yearbook, which you can learn about at {this link}. Because of the way it’s organized, it just comes together very quickly.  Or if you'd like the creative flexibility of digital scrapbooking (creating using your computer, then printing your book professionally) better,{you might love my favorite digital scrapbooking method here}.  Both are printed using the highest quality in the industry.

Make this year your year!  Conquer those photos.  Calendar your plans.  Commit to yourself.  

It’s a gift of wellness of heart and soul, both to you and your loved ones. 

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This post was originally published at on January 26, 2018, by Jennifer Wise.  More #familyhistoryfriday posts can be found below by clicking the hashtag next to Labels.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

guest post: When Photo Overload Becomes Photo Overwhelm

The 21st century gave us this cute phrase:  "photo overload."  And it's cute until it becomes photo overwhelm.

I talk to so many people who are just overwhelmed with their photos.  They have too many, don't know what to do with them, and really feel like they're being crushed by their photos.

It prompted me to write this post on the Evolve website that I'm a contributor for.  This post has four steps to climb your mountain of photos, introduces the concept of EXTRA, and gives some perspective you may not have thought about before.

I'm so passionate about this!  We are losing our photos.  The most photographed generation in history is quickly becoming the generation without photos.  It's a tragedy.  So I want to help people avoid it!

You can read the post right here:  {"When Photo Overload Becomes Photo Overwhelm."}*

And don't forget to share what inspired you.  There are social media links at the bottom of this post as well as the original post.

Preserve your photos!


*UPDATE:  Of necessity, the post from Evolve was moved to LifeTales Books in 2019. 

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Six Creative Valentine Ideas (plus a bonus!)

This post was updated in 2022.

Need some creative Valentine gift ideas for that special someone, friends, or school classmates?  Have you ever come to the right place!!

I've got six creative Valentine ideas for you that are all created online then professionally printed so they are really fun to create (no mess!) and impressive to give.  

Note:  All these ideas, except the bonus one at the end of the post, are created using free templates, so you'll get something personal and top-quality that you can digitally create and order in minutes.  To create, just follow the steps here for opening your free Forever account.  Examples shown are just a sampling--search to find other templates, too!  I'll tell you about another option, too, if you prefer to design yourself and not use templates.

Before we get going with these six creative Valentine ideas, I want to make sure you don't miss this information about Deals (sales).  Prices aren't included in the information below because these items are on sale so often.  (If they're not on sale now, check back in a week or two and they will be!)  Plus, if you're new to Forever, you'll get a $20 coupon just for opening your (free) account, so that's a pretty great bonus, too!

All right!  Let's go.

1- TABLETOP PANEL (photos only or dry-erase memo board)
I think these are fantastic for home decor as well as desktop love at work.  Some designs feature just photos and phrases, while others leave room for writing.  The glossy surface of Tabletop Panels works like a dry-erase board!  

Here are a few of the love-themed template designs available.  Choose portrait or landscape orientation and 5x7 or 8x10:

Click here to create this project.

And here's the same "love you" theme, only as a dry-erase memo board with space for writing.
Click here to create this project.

I made the memo board one last winter with photos of my family and it's our family message board in the kitchen.  I love it!

These make such lovely home decor or at-work connections.  

Click here to make this project.

I've got a tutorial video for you, too, so you can see how easy and fast it is to make a Tabletop Panel.  

And remember--these templates are just a sampling of what's available.  Click here to see all the templates for Tabletop Panels.  

If you'd like to design your own for maximum personalization, keep an eye out for Artisan information near the end of this post

If you want to gift something truly unique and unforgettable, a "reasons I love you" book is it!  Use one of two templates and fill in your own photos and text for something special.  (Plus, Forever books are highest quality!)

Click here to make this project.

Click here to make this project.

Or, tell your love story!  This is a precious way to re-live falling in love.

Click here to make this project.

There are many other book templates available that would be suitable for telling a love story, or even writing your favorite things about someone, such as this Follow Your Heart book and this Always book.

If you've never made a book using Forever's Design & Print templates, don't worry!  It's really easy.  I go over the basics in this video.  This video is geared toward preserving a year's worth of photos in one book (a Yearbook), but the same information applies to whatever kind of Design & Print book you're making.  Look how easy:

Book prices vary based on Deals (sales), too, but they also vary based on size (8x8, 10x10, 12x12) and on binding (hardbound or softbound with top-quality PUR binding), so choose what works best for you and be sure to snap up a sale!

This is a fun way to show a Valentine your love!  Canvases are printed on premium, archival quality satin canvas and feature a 1   1/2" gallery wrap with premium black backing.  Hanging hardware is attached.  Canvas prints come in many sizes, ranging from 8x8 to 36x24.

Here are a few love-themed designs.
Click here to make this project.

Click here to make this project.

Click here to make this project.

These are everyday gifts for your Valentine to use all year!  Mugs come in 3 sizes (11 oz., 15 oz., and 18 oz.), and Water Bottles are 17 oz. and stainless steel (hand-wash only).  (I love mine!  It keeps my water cold for hours!)  The frosted glasses are 16 oz. 

Click here to make this project.

Again, the beautiful designs are done for you, then you just add a photo and some personalization in text.  (Keep reading if you'd rather design one of these projects yourself.)

Click here to make this project.

This video tutorial walks you through how to make a mug using Design & Print by Forever and its beautiful, easy (and free!) templates.  We were done in about 4 minutes!  Plus--there's a bonus in this video:  Mug Mix recipes.  Made in the larger size mug in the microwave in less than 2 minutes, these single-serving recipes are perfect for college students or just a snow day at home!  

Click here to make this project.

The love-themed frosted glass template available is so simple--just personalize with two names and you're done!
Click here to make this project.

Here's another practical idea for everyday use that reminds your Valentine you love him/her, again with simple designs that you can create in no time.

Click here to make this project.

Click here to make this project.

And this design will look familiar!  
Click here to make this project.

Last but certainly not least, here's idea #6.  And a bonus item, too!

Coaster sets are such a fun and unique gift!  They measure 3.75x3.75 and have rounded corners.  Coasters come in a set of 4 and are made with a high gloss finish on top of a sturdy cork backer.  Any non-photo designs can be swapped out for photo designs, too--I'll show some examples!

Click here to make this project.

Click here to make this project.

Click here to make this project.

These creative, personalized Valentine ideas are all printed on highest-quality products and include a 100% satisfaction guarantee.  If you're looking for a Valentine gift that is guaranteed not to be re-gifted, here you go!

Before we get to the bonus item, which is great for school classes, friends, kids, adults, and true loves, here's the information I mentioned before about stepping outside templates.  The templates I've shown here are fantastic because they're free to use and are already designed so that you can make these beautiful gifts in minutes.

But if you'd like more flexibility than templates offer and you'd like to design a book, mousepad, water bottle (etc.) yourself, you're going to love Artisan digital scrapbooking software.  This is a basic overview of this powerful software program by Forever.  I have had so much fun with it, designing whatever beautiful, meaningful projects I want, in my own style which allows me the amount of text and photos I want every time.

You can even get a 30-day free trial of Artisan here.  (And be sure you check out Deals before purchasing Artisan because it's almost always on sale!)
One of the special things about Artisan digital scrapbooking software from Forever is that it offers a few extra products that aren't available in Design & Print.  One of those products is business cards.  And because you can create anything you want with Artisan, you can make business cards into Happy Valentine's Day tags!

These tags made from business cards can be tied, taped, or stapled to any gift.   Is your 2nd-grader giving pencils to her class this Valentine's day?  Tie this pretty tag on with a ribbon.  Are you giving chocolates to some girlfriends this year?  Tape this lovely tag on the box.  Handwrite a "to" and "from" and you've got a gorgeous addition to a sweet gift.

tag created by Jennifer Wise using Artisan software by Forever

Business cards come in sets of 50, so you'll get a couple of years (or a couple of elementary school classes) worth of Happy Valentine's Day tags.  They measure 3.5" wide x 2" tall.

Because I made this myself using Artisan software, it's not a template and not something you can find on the Forever website like all these other products.  

But I'd love to share it with you!  Open your free Forever account and then email to ask me for the PDF of this project.  I'll reply with the PDF which you can download to your Forever account and simply order!  

Happy Valentine's Gift-Giving!

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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Beating the Winter Blues with Hygge

I hate snow.  I hate being cold.  And until this year, I hated January.  After the festivities, spirit, lights, food, and celebrations of December, January feels like you’ve just been dumped when you thought the relationship was going pretty well.  All the happy, cozy feelings and good times get abruptly replaced by cold, snow, and dark.  So what changed my mind and my experience this year?  Hygge!

Hygge is a popular trend right now that I actually learned about through Pinterest!  As I’ve learned about hygge in recent weeks, I’ve found that the most consistent definition of hygge is that it can’t really be defined.  Here, though, is what I learned:

Hygge is pronounced “hue-guh” and is a feeling or concept.  It comes from a Danish word meaning “well-being.”  It {may also come from} an Old Norse term, hygga, which means “to comfort” and from an older word, hugr, meaning “mood.”  These words, too, may be related to “hug.”  Even as the logophile I am, I find it best to not try to define hygge, but to feel it.

The mood or feeling of hygge is a Danish and generally Scandinavian tradition of coziness of the soul, signified by comfort, warmth, togetherness, softness, simplicity, and contentment.  It is manifest in lights, candles, warm drinks, delightful food (and comfort food), good books, fireplaces, enjoying family and friends, and bringing nature inside.

I like to imagine that this feels like a great idea to me because of my Danish (and Swedish) heritage, but I’m confident it’s more simple than that.  As a pretty solid introvert, my first reaction to this was, “Oh, I can totally hygge–all winter long.”  It’s more than just cozying up with a good book under a fuzzy blanket with a cup of hot chocolate, though.  Hygge includes togetherness.  It’s that feeling I get when I’ve got cousins and aunts and uncles filling my house with conversation and laughter.  So as much as hygge invites cozy time for yourself, it also means relaxing with family and friends, enjoying and appreciating the warmth of connections and relationships.

My Experience with Seasonal Depression
From the age of 4, I grew up in Utah.  I essentially left the state after college.  That was enough to know I knew I hated snow and being cold.  After college, though, I stopped having “traditional” cold, snow-filled winters.  I lived in San Diego for almost a year as a {missionary} for my church, with a summer in Indiana and Florida for the same purpose.  After I got married, we lived in the Bay Area (CA) for almost a year while my husband attended graduate school at Stanford.  We then moved to a lovely town in Southwest Washington with very mild winters.  Snow every other year for 24 hours was just right for me!

I’ve always been a fan of holidays and celebrations.  I put up {seasonal decorations} around my house every month, many of which I make myself.  Whether it’s Valentine’s Day or Independence Day, it puts me in a festive and celebratory mood.  I really enjoy it.   Back when I lived in no-snow areas, January became a snowman theme.  I decorated with snowmen, snowflakes, and such.  Snow was fun because it was rare.

And then I moved to western New York.  I had no idea what I was getting into.  Winters there are not for the faint of heart.  I began to call it Narnia, and for good reason.  The months and months on end of cloud cover, endless dumpings of deep snow, monochrome days, and humid cold that no amount of layers could relieve began to crush me.  It was the first time I really understood what depression was and how it could truly be caused by simply what’s outside.

Our Natural Rhythm
Now that I live in one of the sunniest cities in the country (though it still snows and gets cold here sometimes), I can see with clearer eyes how many of us are tied to our environments.  There are people, of course, who aren’t as sensitive to such things.  My husband, for example, could live in a cave or on a tropical beach and pretty much feel the same day to day.  But there is something very real about the seasons and our natural state of being at different times of the year.

{Dina Tibbs} says that most things our society generally does in January is unnatural.  Winter is naturally a time of peaceful solitude.  The world is resting, asleep.  She suggests that the sudden changes of New Year’s Resolutions go against our natures which are still quiet because of the season.  She actually waits until spring to make resolutions, choose a word for the year, and set goals and intentions.  January to her is a peaceful time to be still.  It’s her time to fill her own cup.

This idea really speaks to me.  I’ve always hated New Year’s resolutions because it really does seem unnatural to me to all of a sudden make drastic changes during a time when I really just want to sleep more, wear fuzzy socks, and always have something warm to drink.  No wonder!

Going into January this year, I decided to throw out my old seasonal home decor as well as my focus.  (Why would I decorate with snowmen?!  I hate snow.)  I noticed this past December how much I love lights and candles.  They make me feel different.  They make me feel cozy and warm and comfortable.  I think that means they make me feel hygge.

I’ll tell you about the changes I made this month so you can get some ideas for what you might like for beating the winter blues.  Although not explicit, from what I can tell, hygge also seems to be a focus on self-care.  Isn’t that what well-being is?
  • I bought some scented candles from my favorite company because they smell delicious and cozy.  My favorite scents this time of year are pomegranate and cranberry orange.
  • I have spread greenery around my house.  I really love seeing something GREEN and LIVING every day, and that’s especially true in winter.  I have a brown thumb, but many stores sell forced bulbs like hyacinths or potted ones like tulips this time of year.  Many tropical plants like majesty palms make great house plants.
  • I found some flameless candles on a timer!  I have spread these around my house as well.  When the sun goes down, the warm flicker comes on and gives a cozy, warm feel to my home.
  • I pulled out cozy slippers and socks, have fuzzy blankets around, and soft throw rugs as well.  While these items can be used practically for warmth and comfort, the look and style of them speak “cozy,” too.
  • I do not feel guilty for enjoying hot chocolate every day.  It’s hygge, and it makes me happy.
  • I focus on simplicity by not making major changes right now and just being still.  I do have a word for the year, but it’s something I can keep in mind constantly, applying as needed.  My focus instead is on well-being and enjoying life.  I have blocked out a couple of full days in January marked simply “hygge.”  Maybe they’ll be reading, maybe they’ll be napping, maybe they’ll be preparing dinner for a casual gathering in my home.  Whatever they are will be about contentment and warmth.
  • I think one of the coziest and most comfortable and happy ways to hygge is to {hygge with pictures}.  You can read more about how photos and memories are the essence of hygge and how to incorporate them into your hygge traditions right there at that link.
I think one of my favorite things about hygge is that there isn’t a recipe, there aren’t rules. Whatever speaks to me about hygge is probably what I need most.  Your hygge may look different than my hygge.  What would hygge look like to you?  Tell me in the comments below!

I love (which means I probably need) the focus on comfort and peace and warmth and coziness.  I think I may have just beat the winter blues once and for all!
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This post was originally published at on January 17, 2018, by Jennifer Wise.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Conquer Your Photos: catch up with the Two-in-One Plan (recorded class and free printable)

"Do something with my pictures" is on many to-do lists.  It's a common New Year's resolution, too.  The sheer volume of digital photos we take, however, can make preserving them a daunting task.  Sure, photo storage seems to be all the rage these days, but what about actually preserving a photo in print?  Printed photos allow you to preserve your photos with their stories--your memories.  The details or story behind a photo is a full HALF the value of a photo!

That's why I'm so passionate about sharing as many helps and solutions as I possibly can.  This blog is full of them, of course, but I also taught a 40-minute online class last week with some very specific tools, tips, and solutions, including my Two-in-One Plan for CATCHING UP preserving your photos and their stories in a meaningful way.  In this class, we look at both digital photos and photos that have already been printed.  I walk you through the steps you need to take before preserving your photos (such as making time* and organization) as well as offer real, do-able solutions for catching up preserving your photos.

IF YOU MISSED THE CLASS, be sure you watch the recording here.  It will be the best 40 minutes you can spend on one of the most valuable things you have to gift yourself and the world with--your own memories, photos, and stories.

UPDATE 2022:  Please note a few changes on the printable and in the video below.  Our new email address is  Our new YouTube channel is here
Heritage Makers and Snap2Finish became YPhoto under Youngevity (which purchased Heritage Makers in 2013).  YPhoto uses only templates, so the creativity showcased here is no longer available there, and they also no longer have capability to print previously-created projects like these from the old system. YPhoto is not a photo storage site like Heritage Makers was. 

An excellent alternative for digital scrapbooking and easy photo storybooks is Forever which offers heirloom-quality products and photo privacy just like Heritage Makers, plus some other services such as media digitizing (VHS tapes, photo scans, etc.). and permanent photo storage.  This new video shows 3 different options for preserving your photos and memories, so there's something for everyone no matter your available time or creativity interest.

And, as promised, here's the free printable with tips and the Two-in-One Plan!   Click here to print:

For specific time-management helps, you can find suggestions {here} and {here}.

Now that you've been armed, go conquer!

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Friday, January 12, 2018

Making a Plan to Catch Up On Your Photos

Like many things, catching up on your photos is just a worthy goal until you have an actual plan to do it.  If you have photos on phones, cameras, hard drives, and clouds, making time and making a plan to preserve them in a tangible form can be a little overwhelming.  Once you have a plan, though, you can move forward.  Even big tasks can be accomplished when you know how you’re going to do it.  So let’s get you on that road.

First, let me explain what I mean by "catching up on your photos."

As I like to say, “Don’t let your babies grow up to be JPEGs.”  Digital photo storage is still just storage.  Photos need to be seen in order to be known.
"The sheer volume and lack of organization of digital photos for personal memories discourages many people from accessing and reminiscing about them.  In order to remember, we have to access and interact with the photos, rather than just amass them.”  ~Linda Henkel, psychological scientist
So if you’ve been amassing some photos, getting them out of digital form into something tangible is the only way they will be interacted with and loved.  It’s how memories stick with us.  It’s quite {literally preserving memories}.

When I say “catch up on your photos,” I mean be current.  If you have photos on your phone/camera/computer from 2012 that haven’t been preserved in a tangible way, I’d like to help you catch up.  Memories are best preserved when they’re fresh.  My goal in this month’s #familyhistoryfriday posts is to get you there.

Setting aside time is key!

In the {Tips on Bringing Photos to Life} I posted several months ago, I said that an hour a week makes a difference.  Have you ever thought about what kind of progress you could make if you worked on preserving your photos for 52 hours this year?

I think one of the most critical parts of setting aside time to catch up on your photos is to recognize what would give you the most success.  What works for someone else might not work for you.  Do you work best with other people or by yourself?  Do you work best in smaller spurts or bigger chunks?

Consider which of these ideas for setting aside time for photos would work best for you, then pull out your calendar RIGHT NOW and mark it with pen!
  • 1-2 hours on a regular basis (like every Friday night or Sunday morning)
  • 3-5 hours one day a month
  • involving family members in organizing, sorting, writing down memories
  • attending a regular memory-keeping event (I host online "get togethers" through {my Facebook group} so everyone--local or not--can attend.)
  • create your own tribe; invite a group of friends to get together for memory-keeping on a regular basis (it's fun, too!)
Keep in mind, too, that not all memory-keeping methods take a lot of time.  {This one}, for example, is a quick one that's still high-quality.

If you missed the Two-in-One Plan and my free online class, Conquer Your Photos, last week, you can {find them both here}.

I am also excited to share with you some resources I have to help you find the time for this important endeavor.  “I don’t have time” is a common phrase these days.  More is coming at us in a given day than it was in a whole month 20 years ago.  Over the years as I’ve coached people with their memory-keeping, I’ve learned and then written a lot about time, time management, how the average American spends time, and {the false idea behind the phrase “finding time.”}

In fact, I wrote just this week about what I learned about time from the work of two women, Success Coach Lanette Pottle and Productivity Expert Julie Miller Davis.  If you struggle to find time, feel overwhelmed, feel like your calendar controls you instead of the other way around, {READ THIS POST, "Time flies, but you're the pilot."}!  Thank me later.  Pottle has some great things to say about our mindset about time and how shifting it gives us more time.  Davis has three tools to use when you consider ANY activity on your calendar, and she also drops a truth bomb on multitasking that blew me away.

For some additional perspective on time, both this article, {“Selective is the New Smart,”} and the great article it was based on, {“Busy is the New Stupid,”} give some really helpful food for thought on how we look at busy.

The truth is:
"The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it."  ~Henry David Thoreau
Multiple trips to the grocery store each week, hours spent scrolling social media, TV watching, laundry, child care– they all take time.  Some things are worth more of our time than others.  As Thoreau said, we determine how valuable something is based on the amount of life–or time–we exchange for it.

Memory-keeping is worth the time it requires.  Recorded memories and stories {have been shown} to increase self-esteem, lower stress, increase resilience, and create a sense of belonging and purpose.  It’s good for the heart and soul.  That’s worth everything.

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This post was originally published at on January 12, 2018, by Jennifer Wise.  You can read more #familyhistoryfriday posts about photos, memories, stories, connections, and family by clicking the hashtag below next to Labels.