Tuesday, April 24, 2018

The HOW and WHY of Getting Your Photos out of Digital Form

We're well into the 21st century now, so most of us only know photos as something digital.  Unfortunately, we've lost sight of an important fact:  digital photos are photos in storage.  They're essentially film negatives, only you can see them a little better.

I say this because most people don't just sit down and scroll through jpeg files.  If you do-- if they're your screen saver, for example --that fantastic, but they are incomplete.  Jpeg files are lacking details, names, dates, memories, and stories.  So jpegs are really only half of what they could be.

I wrote a series several months ago (on a blog I'm a regular contributor for) on getting your photos out of digital form--not just the WHY, but the HOW.  I want to share with you the MANY tips and ideas you can find here: 
What's the best tip you found from these articles?  What's going to be your game-changer?


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Teacher Appreciation Gifts that will Knock Their Socks Off

There are so many teachers who give so much, going above and beyond to make sure their students learn and love learning--and are happy at the same time.  I love giving truly meaningful gifts to those special people, beyond flowers or a gift card that will be gone and forgotten in no time.

With a little planning, you can give teacher appreciation gifts that will knock their socks off!

I've been thinking lately about what kind of teacher appreciation gifts might fit the bill this year.  For quite a few years now, I've created gifts using Heritage Makers because they're so personal, and many times I spend less than I would on flowers or a gift card.

When my kids were in elementary school, we gave their teachers little books.  You can {see a few of them here}, page by page.  I would have my kids help me write the books--they would write something they loved about the teacher, something they learned in class, something they improved at with the teacher's help, etc.  We sprinkled some photos in, too.  We LOVED giving those books to those special teachers because we knew they really showed the depth of our appreciation, and we knew they would be cherished for years.

Now that my kids are older, my mind keeps going back to the gifts I made for their teachers more recently:  personalized candy bar wraps and notepads.  I'm thinking this might be just the thing this year, too.

The candy bar wraps (underneath the scissors there) are nothing more than a 12x12 scrapbook page from Heritage Makers, printed on lite paper so that it's easily wrapped around a Hershey bar (after it's cut).  You can make four wraps from one page.

You can always create your own design from scratch using the thousands of pieces of (included) digital art, or you can use templates like these:
I know those last two aren't school-themed, but you can always edit any Heritage Makers template 100% so you'll get just what you want.  (Or click the "contact me" tab at the upper left if you want me to send these candy bar wraps that I made to you--I can transfer them from my Heritage Makers account to yours!  Then you just personalize.)

Then I made matching notepads, to go along with the candy bars!  They come in a set of 4, and each one can be a different style or name. Here's a fun school-themed notepad set.  Click on each of the 4 thumbnails underneath so you can see each of the 4 notepads included in that template.
I really love how personal these are!

Creating anything using Heritage Makers means you create it digitally online (like you would in programs such as Canva or Publisher) and then submit it for publishing with Heritage Makers.  It's shipped to you in about 7-10 days.  

I actually made you a little tutorial video about how to make notepads, so you can see it for yourself!  

You can learn about sizes and product specifications (like how many papers per pad) plus learn how to quickly personalize a template in the first 22 minutes or so.  Stick around another 15 minutes and you'll see how to create notepads from scratch--the sky is the limit!

Just follow the video or {these steps} to start creating something those special teachers in your life will always remember!

Then Pin this for next year!  :) 

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Celebrating National Scrapbooking Day with a Sale!

Did you know that National Scrapbooking Day is always the first Saturday in May?  It's true!  In 2018, it will be Saturday May 5.  So let's celebrate!

Here at LifeTales Books, we know photos and memories do miraculous good for the heart and soul, no matter how exactly that memory-keeping is done.  It all counts.  You've probably noticed that most of the focus here is on digital storybooking and digital scrapbooking through Heritage Makers, but for this day of national celebration of our photos and memories we're sharing some sales on hands-on (paper) scrapbooking and memory-keeping--plus some fun bonuses sprinkled in that aren't necessarily scrapbooking-related.

Everything you see below is on sale from April 1 - May 31, 2018.  (Click the "sales" tab in red along the top of this blog to find monthly Heritage Makers publishing specials.)  All these items can be purchased at www.heritagemakers.com/jenniferwise by clicking "products."  After clicking "products," click either "Our Memories For Life" or "Anthology DIY," depending on which brand the item comes from.  

READY?!  Let's celebrate!  There are 30% off specials, 40% off specials, and even 50% off specials!

30% OFF

All Border Maker System Cartridges from Our Memories For Life are 30% off.  There are 15 to choose from.  (The Border Maker System itself is sold separately.)  These are so much fun and can be used for scrap pages, cardmaking, or even decorating gift bags.

Perpetual Birthday Calendar Kits from Anthology DIY are also 30% off.
This kit includes everything you need to make the perpetual birthday calendar.  Never forget a birthday!  I think this would make such a great Mother's Day gift!

40% OFF

All Canvas Exchange Sets from Anthology DIY are 40% off.   This sale is on the exchange-able canvas pieces only.  And the wooden blocks themselves are also on sale, so look for them in the 50% off section.  If you aren't familiar with Canvas Exchange Blocks, you are in for a treat!

You can get a better idea of how these Canvas Exchange Blocks work at this little 2-minute video from Lisa Bearnson who is the creative brain behind these sets.  They are the most darling and the most simple home decor!

All those canvas sets can be exchanged on just one set of wooden blocks for rotating seasonal decor!

Also 40% off are the Anthology DIY Scrapbooking Layout Kits.  These are scrapbooking pages that are practically done for you.  Everything you need is already included in the kits.  They come together in no time!  Just assemble the pages and add photos and journaling.

There are lots of different styles to choose from, too.

The last 40% off deal is paper scrapbooking collections from Our Memories For Life:  the Creme de la Creme collection

as well as the It's a Kid's World collection.

Remember, all these items can be purchased at www.heritagemakers.com/jenniferwise by clicking "products."  After clicking "products," click either "Our Memories For Life" or "Anthology DIY," depending on which brand the item comes from.  Sale runs April 1 - May 31.  

50% OFF

The block pieces that go with the Canvas Exchange pieces shown before are also on sale!  The blocks are already cut--you just sand a little and paint.  Everything is included, including the sandpaper and paint brush.

The 7" Personal Trimmer from Our Memories For Life is on sale 50% off, too!

Happy National Scrapbooking Day!  Don't forget--these sales end May 31!  Share with someone who will love you for it.  :)


Friday, April 6, 2018

Thank Goodness It's #friyay

It's the first Friday of the month, so it's time for another #friyay where we find out what people are saying about Heritage Makers.  This one comes to us from a good friend of mine, Wendy, whom I met when I lived in Washington.  For the last couple of years, she has been in the throes of graduate school.  She didn't have time to create some really special books documenting with photos, letters, and e-mails her son's {2-year missionary service}, so she asked if she could hire me to do it for her.  It was honestly a fantastic experience for me, too, getting to be the fly on the wall and learn about her son's experiences and service.  Wendy had never used Heritage Makers before, and though she could go into her account as I was working and see the digital version of the books, here's what she said when she actually received the books:

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Learning to Be in Pictures - guest post by Mary Beth at Lovejoy Photography and Heritage Maker

Today I am happy to bring you an insightful blog post from guest blogger Mary Beth Lovejoy.  You will appreciate her perspective as a heartfelt memory-keeper.  She's also an award-winning photographer!  Mary Beth is a mother of two children and a grandmother of four amazing granddaughters ages 13-4.  She enjoys hiking, bike riding, kickboxing, knitting, and making memories with her family.  I have enjoyed many creative collaborations with Mary Beth, and I know you will learn from her story and thoughts:

My love of photography started just by photographing my own children when they were young. I have grown through experience and education into both a portrait and landscape photographer. I feel the same passion photographing a wedding or family portrait as I do capturing the landscape of Alaska. The end results put a smile on someone’s face every time!

Lovejoy Photography and Heritage Maker works with all ages to capture their memories so that they can tell their story later in life. Our goal is to not have you spend more on photography services than is necessary. Working with clients to script their day helps to determine what is most important to our clients, develop ways to save money, and most of all, how to balance the two.

My style of photography is unique. Although I ultimately work within my clients’ guidelines, I prefer to take candid shots versus traditional staged photography, which allows me to capture special moments rather than styling photos. I don't edit my shots other than occasionally cropping and shifting images. The perfection is in the shot! The images I shoot belong to my clients and all of my photography work is done at a location of my client's choosing.

I have been the photographer in my family since my children were infants. (My son just turned 42 in February and my daughter will be 40 in May!) Being the family photographer meant I was not in many of our family photos.
I became a member of the Heritage Maker family many years ago. I had the pleasure of attending a national workshop called “The Dream Team”. We discussed many things about our lives at this workshop, not what I had expected. It was here that I discovered that I was leaving myself out of my own life story. I felt insignificant to the purpose of my family photography. That needed to change. I could not make up for my past, but I sure could change going forward and I did.
As I left my day to day profession, I became more interested in my photography. I began to use it to capture other peoples’ memories and memories of my various trips around our amazing country. My company tag line is “Lovejoy Photography and Heritage Maker: works with all ages to capture their memories so that they can tell their story later in life.” I include myself in images of my trips. Why? It was an amazing location, I want to remember that moment shared with my friend, I want my family to see what I had the opportunity to see…oh so many reasons.

My home is filled with photographs. Some images are framed and hung on my walls. Some I turned into ornaments and hand from a hook. Others make up a calendar that I use daily.  I have canvas prints and metal print. I also have many books that I have created. Let me tell you about one I created and had printed for every member of my family.
Christmas is a time for my family to gather together. We have gathered at a sibling’s home on Christmas Eve and then my parents home on Christmas day. One year I decided to create a book of the numerous images I had of the many years of celebration. My father had died a few years prior to this so I decided to dedicate it to him and present it to my mom on Christmas Eve. My mother fell about a week before Thanksgiving that year, she hit her head and died on Thanksgiving Day, which happened to be November 25th that year. Those books arrived at my home on the very day of the memorial service for my mother. Christmas was very different for us that year…we were now orphans, regardless of our ages. We gathered at my parent’s home, now my brother’s home, but a great deal was missing. I presented those books to my family. As each one opened the book and looked through the images there were many reactions and emotions shared. We all cried and laughed but most of all, we all new of the love our family shared over the years. Each Christmas since I look through that book, as do other members of our family, and we remember. (By the way, I am crying now as I write this post.) Our images of life do that to us.

See this special family Christmas book, page by page, by {clicking here}.

The purpose of photography is to capture moments of our lives and record them for later in our life or the lives of our children/grandchildren/siblings etc. If we do not record the information about that photograph we will forget or be gone so we can not share with someone else. Technology has changed photography and the way we see our world. Our cell phones take images of everything. What good are they if you never take them off your phone and save them for later in life? (Same is true for our digital cameras today) So many people just look at the images today, scroll through them a few weeks later but do we record why we took the image? Where were we? Who was with us? Why was it important? Think about the opportunities there are with each image.

What if a member of your family was to suffer from a disease/accident that affected their memory? How wonderful it would be for you to be able to provide them with a book that reminded them of their grandchildren or a time spent with their spouse? Perhaps it might even trigger a memory of something that they could not recall before. Would that not be amazing? But if we do not record the details of the images, how will we help them remember?
Take time today, to record your life…not just photograph it. YOU are important to others and they will want to remember your life the way it was lived.
Lovejoy Photography and Heritage Maker
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