Thursday, November 29, 2018

How Do You Treat Your Pictures?

Have you ever thought about that?  I bet you've never asked yourself how you treat your pictures.  Have you ever thought about why you take a picture in the first place?  Go look at the last 5 pictures on your phone or camera.  WHY did you take them?  What would happen if you lost them?  What would happen if you lost all the pictures on your phone?


I thought about this the other day as I was writing a blog post.  This is what came into my head:  "We take pictures because we want to remember.  And then we treat them like we want to forget."  Isn't that the truth?


And isn't it sad?  Think about it.  We take pictures BECAUSE we want to remember an event, a moment, a person, a sunrise.  And then what do we do with the picture?  Usually, nothing.  It stays on the phone or camera, or maybe if it's lucky you back it up on a computer or hard drive.  Usually, photos just live somewhere as a jpeg file, and they're never really seen or looked at again.  Why would we do that?  Why would we treat something we created to remember as if we actually didn't care about it and preferred to forget it?

I read a {great blog post} recently where the blogger asserted that pictures in today's society are seen as frivolous and even vain.  But I love the conclusion she came to:  If the moment or the event makes you happy right now, why WOULDN'T you capture it so it can make you happy again later?  The ability to look back on a moment, or see a person again, is {good for the heart and the soul}.

One of the main purposes of this blog is to help our actions toward our pictures be more in line with their real value. My hashtag #dontletyourbabiesgrowuptobejpegs is a real goal here at LifeTales Books!


There's something more.  Your pictures can be something more!  Rather than files to scroll through, back up, and possibly lose, your pictures can be seen and preserved in a high-quality way that will allow you to add meaning to the photos by writing details.  Let me give you an example.


This is a really special photo.  And you have no idea why.  You don't know who is in this photo, where it was taken, why it was taken, or what makes this photo special.  This is how someone else (maybe your kids, grandkids, spouse, friend) will look at your photos.  Over time, you may even look at your own photos the way you're looking at my photo here.  If you're not careful, your photos will be as useless and meaningless to someone else as this one of mine is to you.  

But at least this is a photo.  Most of our "photos" today aren't even photos--they're just files.  They need to be brought out of file form and into a tactile form that can be held and seen, even if the computer has crashed or the cell phone has been stolen.  (There are some astonishing statistics of the likelihood of these {at this link}.)

This blog has a lot of great resources for doing just that.  Everything you'll find here (especially at the purple tabs across the top of the blog, under the header) are better quality than the vast majority of photo books you find online.  There are lots of perks, too, such as no hidden cost (no buying digital art, for example), private photo storage (shockingly unusual these days), and Heirloom Assurance.  You can {read more here}.

While I always encourage people to {find a memory-keeping method they will love} so that they're more likely to do it, I'll share two of my favorite ideas here, plus one super speedy option.

This is the one I always recommend to people who have so many photos that they don't even know what to do with them or where to start.  This video gives a fantastic solution, but it also goes over some strategies for getting a handle on many, many photos.

This is the method I personally use, and in the video I go over why I love it so much and how this method is responsible for allowing me to be consistently caught up preserving my photos and memories.  This method is sort of the extended version of the method above (yearbook).

And here's a new super speedy option.  While the classic, clean look may appear more "average," the books are printed on much higher quality than an "average" photo book you may see online--many of which are advertised as free.  (You definitely want quality that will last if you're taking the time to preserve your photos and memories, right?)

Although the videos give you pretty much everything you need to know, you can {find additional tutorials here} if you'd like.

What will you do today towards treating your pictures as treasures, treating like them as if you want to see them and remember the moments they have captured for you?

Pin to save and share!

Monday, November 26, 2018

Heart & Soul LinkUp #3

I hope you enjoyed Thanksgiving!  As I mentioned at Heart & Soul LinkUp #2 two weeks ago, here at LifeTales Books we believe in #familyfirst and #socialmediafourthorfifth.  ;)  So we took last week off and didn't have our usual LinkUp.  We're back in business this week, though, and you finally get to see the favorites from LinkUp #2 AND find more great blog posts at today's LinkUp #3.


As promised, here are the favorites from our recent Heart & Soul LinkUp.  Here are the readers' favorite and my three favorites.

READERS' FAVORITE

from Lori at Choosing Wisdom

MY FAVORITES

from Jen at Midday Mornings
I have mentioned before that I've been on the receiving end of grief several times in the last few years (here and here), so this post spoke especially to my heart.  It can be so hard to know how to really help someone who is grieving, and these eight suggestions are wonderful.

from Flossie at Super Mom Hacks
These are just some doggone great ideas!  I love how Flossie talks about what didn't work for her and then has some creative ideas that DID.

from Anna at Confessions of Parenting
The thing I love about this post is that it really applies to ALL moms!  My youngest is in high school, and Anna's #4 tip is my favorite--and one I'm still learning (but have gotten WAY better at over the years).

Bloggers, you can copy this "I was featured" image to show off on your own blog or social media.  :)

Let's dive right in to more blog posts that are good for the heart and soul.  Look around and see what inspires you this week.  Remember, blog posts are added all day long on Monday.  You can see all of them on Tuesday and vote for your favorites that day, too.

Do you know a blogger whose posts you'd like to see here?  Invite her to share them!

Bloggers:  Before posting your links, know the rules for sharing your blog posts at Heart & Soul LinkUp.  They are at the end of this post.

And now here's Heart & Soul LinkUp #3!


An InLinkz Link-up

See you next week for more inspiring posts!

Sharing is caring--help others find blog posts that are good for the heart and soul by
pinning this image to Pinterest or by tweeting or sharing this post on Facebook.
RULES FOR BLOGGER PARTICIPATION (Rules for adding your blog post to today's linkup above.)  Participating bloggers MUST:
  1. FOLLOW THE THEME:  The theme of the Heart & Soul LinkUp is "what's good for the heart and soul."  Therefore, all blog posts added to the Heart & Soul LinkUp must be about something that's good for the heart and soul.  This can include posts related to the home and family such as recipes, DIY,  home decor, parenting, marriage, etc., or inspirational posts about hope, learning, growth, connections, etc.  Fashion bloggers, for example, would not be a good fit here.  ALL POSTS MUST BE FAMILY-FRIENDLY AND UPLIFTING.
  2. POST (when & how):  The LinkUp will open at 7:00am Mountain Time every Monday and close 24 hours later, 7:00am Tuesday.  Voting for favorites will open at 7:00am Tuesday and close at 7:00am Wednesday.  To add your blog post to the LinkUp, click the blue "add my link" button.  Remember to add a direct link to the specific post you want to share, not your blog's home page.
  3. OBSERVE THE LIMITS:  Let's save room for everybody--submissions are limited to 2 blog posts per person on each weekly LinkUp.  (This may change moving forward, but for now the limit is 2.)
  4. SHARE THE LOVE:  Read and comment on at least 3 other blog posts each week you submit your own post to the LinkUp.  This isn't a place to dump your links and run--we're here to help each other out and even make new friends.  When you comment, please use the hashtag #heartandsoullinkup at the end of your comment.  Voting on a favorite isn't required but is appreciated.
  5. INVITE OTHERS:  We need everyone's help in inviting others to see this LinkUp, so each participating blogger must do two things:  #1 Put a link to this LinkUp on your own blog so that others can find us--sidebar works best, but a tab works, too.  Something visible is ideal.  If you prefer, you can save the image at the top of this post and use it at the end of your own blog post saying, "Find me at the Heart and Soul LinkUp" with an included link.  #2 After posting your link in the LinkUp, the InLinkz program will let you share the blog post you just added on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, or Google+.  You must share on at least one of those platforms.
  6. LET ME SHARE:  By participating in this LinkUp, you are giving me the right to share your blog posts on social media.  When you are chosen as a reader favorite or as one of my own favorite posts of the week, you allow me to share a link back to your blog post plus an image from your post here on my blog (which gives you additional visibility). 
Thanks, blogging friends, for sharing your fantastic blog posts that are good for the heart and soul!

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Best of LifeTales Books - blog post collection (Happy Thanksgiving!)

Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope you have had an enjoyable day in the ways that make you happiest, and I hope you've taken time to count your blessings.


If you're ready for some inspiring, fun, and interesting reading, you've come to the right place.  You'll find the Best of LifeTales Books today--the top five blog posts of all time.  And since this blog is nine years old, that's actually saying a lot.  Here are the most-read blog posts at LifeTales Books:

#5 Special Family Days: DIY birthday and anniversary board
I gave this as a gift and it is well-loved!  I love seeing it when I visit.  :)  Read this blog post here:  https://lifetalesbooks.blogspot.com/2014/02/special-family-days-diy-birthday.html

#4 12 (Days of) Christmas Gift Ideas - part 1
These are some of the funnest gift ideas, and they can be combined for 12 Days of Christmas or you can just choose your favorites to give to neighbors/teachers/friends.  Read this blog post here:  https://lifetalesbooks.blogspot.com/2017/11/12-days-of-christmas-gift-ideas-part-1.html

#3 Two Impressive Ideas for Swag Bags
I wrote this post with small business owners in mind, but these ideas can be used for anything from birthday party bags to open houses or anything!  If you love this idea (shown), wait until you see the next one.  I think it's my very favorite.  Read this blog post here:  https://lifetalesbooks.blogspot.com/2017/06/two-impressive-ideas-for-swag-bags.html

#2 Clever Christmas Card/Letter Idea!
I'm not surprised that my readers are Christmas fans just like I am!  This clever Christmas card/letter idea is so much fun, and it's the second most popular blog post EVER at LifeTales Books!  There's even a video tutorial to show you how to get some fancy and impressive Christmas greetings that will really stand out but not break the bank.  Read this blog post here:  https://lifetalesbooks.blogspot.com/2013/10/clever-christmas-cardletter-idea.html

And now for the #1 most popular post at LifeTales Books over the last 9 years...

#1 Teacher Appreciation Gifts that will Knock Their Socks Off
I love these creative, stand-out teacher appreciation gifts.  They're so clever and so personal.  There's also a video tutorial at this link about how to make your own notepads (they're professionally published) for this fun gift of thanks.  Read this blog post here:  https://lifetalesbooks.blogspot.com/2018/04/teacher-appreciation-gifts-that-will.html

Happy reading!  Since several of these posts are time-specific, remember you can Pin each post to Pinterest so you can find it again next spring (for teachers) or at Christmastime or whenever you're looking for gift ideas or swag bag fun.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 15, 2018

What is Memory-Keeping? (and why does it matter?)

{For centuries now, people have kept scrapbooks}--books with scraps and mementos in their pages.  In fact, the first scrapbooks were usually the family Bible.  It was where people kept important documents, recorded marriages and births and deaths, and even stored keepsakes like locks of hair and eventually photographs.


In the 1980s, a paper-crafting method of preserving photos and memories came on the scene, known as scrapbooking.  ScrapbookING differed from traditional scrapbooks because it was more of an art form or a craft than just jotting a few notes and making sure important things were kept in one place.

Storybooks from Heritage Makers come in 7 sizes and hundreds of styles
(or design your own!)  Digital books can be stories or photo books.  Find all
the perks of using Heritage Makers {here}.
Today, preserving photos and memories can come in many forms.  From {digital scrapbooking} to {simple photo books} to {scrapbooking kits} and {pocket scrapbooking}, memory-keeping has come a long way.  Quality is better, convenience has improved, and availability is common.

Memory-keeping is nothing more than holding on to what's important.  It's making sure photos of graduation don't just sit on a phone or computer until the files are unreadable.  It's writing down some details and memories next to the photo in a book or page so you can be reminded when your memory dims.  Because it will.

Scrapbooking Layout Kits, already designed and quick to assemble.
Available {here} by clicking "products" then "Anthology DIY."
Memory-keeping is how we make connections.  As we learned so beautifully from {Carol Stewart} this past May, "Memories connect us and help us understand who we are."  Memory-keeping is how we re-live the best times in life.  It's how we better remember what we want to remember.  I passionately believe that we can't afford to pass up {the benefits} of preserving photos and their stories--benefits like increased happiness, stress reduction, increased self-esteem (especially in children), a sense of belonging, and other therapeutic benefits like healing and coping.

High-quality digital scrapbook pages come in three sizes and are protected
by {Heirloom Assurance} from {Heritage Makers}.  
Storing photos digitally is good, but the only meaningful way to store photos is in print.  A printed photo can be seen, interacted with, and loved.  A printed photo has a place to record memories.  That's the whole purpose behind and value of a photograph!  Remember that digital photo storage is still just storage.  And storage, as we all know, is putting something away that you won't see or use.  Sticking a digital photo in storage...  well, why even have it?

Pocket Scrapbooking, with pocket pages to slide pictures, cards with text, or decorative papers into.
Available {here} by clicking "products" then "Anthology DIY."
Photos stored in print can last upwards of 200 years!  Digital photos may or may not last until the next change in technology.  Files can be corrupted and become unreadable.  Computers crash.  One big advantage of printed photos is that their stories can be told.  With digital photo files, there isn't a place to record memories and details.  When you print a photo and put it in a book or page, you have space next to it to record what makes the photo important and why you love it.

A photo without a story is only worth half as much.


There is great power in photos and their stories (your memories), which most people leave largely untapped.  We are drawing further and further away from connections these days because technology, video games, and phones are so overused.  Conversations, reminiscing, and connections are becoming old-fashioned.

If you're looking for deeper connections, a greater sense of purpose, and something you can sit down with for 10 minutes for {instant happiness}, it's time for you to make time for memory-keeping.  Get started {right here}.  Find time management tips {here} if you need them.  #dontletyourbabiesgrowuptobejpegs


Monday, November 12, 2018

Heart & Soul LinkUp #2

Did you enjoy having all those great blog posts in one place last week at our first Heart & Soul LinkUp?  I did!  And I loved every post.  These are some of my favorite bloggers, and it's so convenient to just show up here at LifeTales Books and see them all together at once.  I'm sure you found your own favorite posts, and I'm excited to share my favorites and the readers' favorite with you, too!

Remember--if you know great bloggers who would be a great fit for our "good for the heart and soul" theme, you can invite them to share their blog posts here, too.

New to LinkUps and how they work?  Click {here}
Before we see what's in store at Heart & Soul LinkUp #2, let's highlight the favorites from last week!  I've picked three favorites, and the readers picked a favorite, too!

READER FAVORITE(S)
How about that--we have a 3-way tie this week!  Readers loved

from Alicia at My Plant Strong Family

from Michele and Shiree at Confessions of Parenting

from Cary at Cary MacArthur

MY FAVORITES

I really was impressed with so many of the posts that choosing 3 favorites was difficult.  And, yes, I expect it to be that way every week at the Heart & Soul LinkUp!  :)  The 3-way tie for reader favorites helped me a little, though, so thank you for that!  ;)  Here are my favorite posts from Heart & Soul LinkUp #1.

from Shannon at DeBord Studios
I love this post because as far as I can tell, everyone needs help in this area!  I see it a lot in my own work as a Heritage Makers consultant.  Shannon's three suggestions for slowing down are excellent. 

from Amy at Hampers & Hiccups
There are lots of sweet ideas here that I really loved and hadn't thought of before.

from Brittany and Andrea at The American Moms
These are so interactive!  I love that they're so fun that kids might not even realize they're educational.  The shine-a-light ones are a huge hit with kids. 

Bloggers, if you were one of the four favorites this week, copy
this image and show off on your blog and social media!
Were these some of your favorites, too, or did you miss them last time?  I always like seeing favorites at LinkUps just in case I missed something I'll love.

Now it's time for the second edition of the Heart & Soul LinkUp.  Hop around at this LinkUp and see what inspires you this week.  And if you know other bloggers whose posts are good for the heart and soul, invite them to participate in the Heart & Soul LinkUp!

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT:  At LifeTales Books, we believe in #familyfirst and #socialmediafourthorfifth.  ;)  The Heart & Soul LinkUp will take the week of Thanksgiving off, so favorites from this week will be posted in our next LinkUp on November 26 instead of November 19.  Enjoy your holiday and family time.

Bloggers:  Before posting, read the six rules for posting your content here--you'll find them down at the end of this post. 

And now here's Heart & Soul LinkUp #2:



We all love blog posts that are good for the heart and soul!  Sharing is caring,
so Pin this image to Pinterest and spread the joy.

RULES FOR BLOGGER PARTICIPATION (Rules for adding your blog post to today's linkup above.)  Participating bloggers MUST:
  1. FOLLOW THE THEME:  The theme of the Heart & Soul LinkUp is "what's good for the heart and soul."  Therefore, all blog posts added to the Heart & Soul LinkUp must be about something that's good for the heart and soul.  This can include posts related to the home and family such as recipes, DIY,  home decor, parenting, marriage, etc., or inspirational posts about hope, learning, growth, connections, etc.  Fashion bloggers, for example, would not be a good fit here.  ALL POSTS MUST BE FAMILY-FRIENDLY AND UPLIFTING.
  2. POST (when & how):  The LinkUp will open at 7:00am Mountain Time every Monday and close 24 hours later, 7:00am Tuesday.  Voting for favorites will open at 7:00am Tuesday and close at 7:00am Wednesday.  To add your blog post to the LinkUp, click the blue "add my link" button.  Remember to add a direct link to the specific post you want to share, not your blog's home page.
  3. OBSERVE THE LIMITS:  Let's save room for everybody--submissions are limited to 2 blog posts per person on each weekly LinkUp.  (This may change moving forward, but for now the limit is 2.)
  4. SHARE THE LOVE:  Read and comment on at least 3 other blog posts each week you submit your own post to the LinkUp.  This isn't a place to dump your links and run--we're here to help each other out and even make new friends.  When you comment, please use the hashtag #heartandsoullinkup at the end of your comment.  Voting on a favorite isn't required but is appreciated.
  5. INVITE OTHERS:  We need everyone's help in inviting others to see this LinkUp, so each participating blogger must do two things:  #1 Put a link to this LinkUp on your own blog so that others can find us--sidebar works best, but a tab works, too.  Something visible is ideal.  If you prefer, you can save the image at the top of this post and use it at the end of your own blog post saying, "Find me at the Heart and Soul LinkUp" with an included link.  #2 After posting your link in the LinkUp, you must share a link to this blog post at LifeTales Books on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, or Google+. 
  6. LET ME SHARE:  By participating in this LinkUp, you are giving me the right to share your blog posts on social media.  When you are chosen as a reader favorite or as one of my own favorite posts of the week, you allow me to share a link back to your blog post plus an image from your post here on my blog (which gives you additional visibility). 
Thanks, blogging friends, for sharing your fantastic blog posts that are good for the heart and soul!

Thursday, November 8, 2018

A Year's Worth of Your Photos Preserved FOR YOU: my 9-year blogiversary giveaway

I can hardly believe it.  I've been blogging here at LifeTales Books for NINE WHOLE YEARS, writing about photos and memories and stories and connections and DIY and creative gifts and ways to make something meaningful, with some time management and photo organization tips along the way.  So let's celebrate!

As you can probably tell by now, I'm passionate about helping you preserve your pictures, memories, and stories.  The {process of it all}--sitting down and going through your life's experiences--is so good for the heart and soul!  It has {therapeutic benefits and even lowers stress}!  We need our photos and memories and stories far more than we realize.  It's the medicine for all the ills of the day, such as busyness, {overwhelm}, FOMO, and more.


So I'd like to help you get started!  If you haven't done any memory-keeping for a while, I know it can feel a little daunting.  To celebrate my 9-year blogiversary, I'm giving away a 12x12 Family Yearbook which I will put together for you!!  This will help you see, hold, love, and enjoy your photos and memories from the past year (or any year of your choosing).  It can be the boost you need to start memory-keeping on your own, and {Heritage Makers family yearbooks make it so easy}!

What's a Family Yearbook?

Only the best way ever to get your photos off your phone or camera and into your hands and heart, that's all!

Did you know that {storing your photos in print is one of the very best ways} to store them?  It's true!  And a Family Yearbook is organized well, so it's easy to know where any given picture goes.  Not only that, but with the overabundance of photos these days, a Family Yearbook is designed to help you choose your favorites and just preserve those in print.  Heritage Makers is top-quality, too, which is a big reason it's my choice for memory-keeping.  Books have a library binding with metal stitching (not glue, which yellows and cracks over time, causing pages to fall out).  Not only that, but the digital art (which is included!) is absolutely unparalleled, so you're getting something jaw-droppingly beautiful, too.

It's amazing!  

photo credit:  Denise Pehrson
Which makes a Family Yearbook by Heritage Makers an AWESOME blogiversary giveaway, right??

Here's what the winner will do:
  1. Choose the year's worth of pictures you'd like to have preserved.  (2018, 2012, whatever)  (If you need photo organization tips so you can find all your pictures, {this video tutorial} will be your new best friend.)
  2. Choose from three styles of yearbooks.  There are actually lots of family yearbooks by Heritage Makers, but I've just picked three to simplify things for me.  You can see them {right here}, including page-by-page previews so you can choose the book that fits your style best.  If you're not the winner of this giveaway, that link gives information to still come away with a family yearbook.  :)   If you'd really like a different style, I can work with you, so let me know.  
  3. E-mail me 6-10 of your favorite pictures from each month of that year, along with a little description of who is in the photos, where they were taken, what memories you have of them, etc.  So, for example, the first e-mail you'll send me might say "January 2016  Jane's birthday party was so fun because..."  You'll need to e-mail pictures to me in full resolution.
  4. I do the work, you get the benefits.  :)
Without the additional charge of my hourly rate for creating books, this prize would be a $52 value.  However, since I'm putting it all together for you (bonus!), this comes out to be a $180+ prize!!


Note:  If you aren't a winner or if you come across this blog post too late to enter, check out {Digital Scrapbooking for Hire} and you can still come away with a year's worth of photos preserved FOR YOU!

And now I know you're wondering:  SO HOW DO I WIN?!

The winner will be selected at random on November 30.  There must be 10 entries for this prize in order for it to qualify to be given away, so you might want to share this post with friends!  

To enter the drawing, here's what you need to do:
  • Comment on this blog post.  You can tell me why you'd like to win this giveaway, or you can tell me something you've liked about other blog posts here at LifeTales Books over the last 9 years.
  • Tweet, Pin, or share on Facebook any blog post from LifeTales Books of your choosing.  
  • E-mail me just a hello so I have your e-mail address so I can notify you if you win.  I will not use your e-mail for any other purpose (because, hello, that's rude).
I'm SO excited to help you get a leg up on your memory-keeping and help you enjoy the good-for-the-soul by-products of preserving your memories and photos in one accessible, lovable place.  Good luck!  And don't forget to share this post so we're sure to have 10 entries for this giveaway.  The winner will be chosen November 30 and contacted via e-mail.
"My mother made me a scrapbook because I was once too young to remember; I am making scrapbooks for my family because one day I may be too old to remember."            -unknown  

#dontletyourbabiesgrowuptobejpegs

Pin to Pinterest and share!

Monday, November 5, 2018

Celebrating 9 Years of Blogging with a LinkUp!

Yup, 9 years.  I've been blogging here for 9 whole years!  What started as a fun way to keep my Heritage Makers clients across the country updated and informed through tutorials and DIY ideas has expanded wide!  This blog now includes time management tips, inspiration on making connections through photos and stories, easy ways to preserve your memories, meaningful gift ideas, why memory-keeping matters so much, helps to get started writing your story, fun uses for Heritage Makers personal publishing, and much, much more.  My posts have changed a little over the years based on the needs I see and the inspiration I want to share, but there's always been an overall theme of taking time to do something special to make connections. 


One thing I learned this past blogging year is how much fun it is to share the love.  

There are some great blogs out there, and some great content.  A LinkUp is the perfect way to find fantastic posts all in one place.  I have participated in a few LinkUps this year and really enjoyed "meeting" new friends.  Something I really like about LinkUps is that they have a theme, so I always know what type of posts I'm getting when I explore a LinkUp.

In celebration of my 9 years here at LifeTales Books, I've decided to start my own Blog LinkUp here:  The Heart & Soul LinkUp.  If you're a reader, you'll be able to find a lot of fabulous blog posts here.  If you're a blogger who fits the parameters I'll outline below, you'll be able to leave links to your latest blog posts and let new readers find you.  Each week four favorite posts will be featured--my favorite three blog posts from the previous week, and the readers' favorite, too!


Here's how the Heart & Soul LinkUp will work for readers.  It's easy!  Just drop by this blog every Monday or Tuesday and read all the blog posts you like!  (Keep reading to find our very first Heart & Soul LinkUp TODAY!

It's nice to show the bloggers some love when you're done reading if you possibly can.  Here are a few ways to do that:
  • Comment!  Comments are so appreciated!  At the end of your comment leave the hashtag #heartandsoullinkup so our blogger knows you'd like her to post here at Heart & Soul LinkUp again. 
  • NOTE:  If you click a blog post you didn't mean to, our blogging friend will appreciate it if you could stay about 10 seconds so Google doesn't view it as a "bounce."  Among other things, Google uses bounce rates to determine the popularity and value of a blog to make "better" ones easier to find in searches.  Not required, just nice for our blogger friends.
  • Choose your favorite blog post and either tell me about it in the comments below or come back to this post on Tuesday (the next day) and mark the little heart in the right hand corner of the post you love.  The following week, the most popular blog post will be featured here!
  • If you'd like to show a little extra love to blog posts you really like, Pin to Pinterest, Tweet on Twitter, or share on Facebook. 
BLOGGERS sharing their blog posts here at the Heart & Soul LinkUp have six rules to follow.  If this is you, you must scroll down to the bottom of this post and read all the rules for participating BEFORE you post your link in the LinkUp.  
  
I have invited some great bloggers to be a part of the Heart & Soul LinkUp.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!  If you know a blogger who would be a good fit for this LinkUp, invite her, too!  We'd like to have a wide variety of blogs to read each week and are looking to include about 30-40 bloggers regularly!

*drum roll*  Presenting: Heart & Soul LinkUp #1!



SEE YOU NEXT WEEK FOR MORE GREAT BLOG POSTS.  

Pin and share!

Here's how the Heart & Soul LinkUp will work for bloggers who share their own blog posts here.  (These six rules will be posted each week as a reminder.)  Participating bloggers must:
  1. FOLLOW THE THEME:  The theme of the Heart & Soul LinkUp is "what's good for the heart and soul."  Therefore, all blog posts added to the Heart & Soul LinkUp must be about something that's good for the heart and soul.  This can include posts related to the home and family such as recipes, DIY, home decor, parenting, marriage, etc., or inspirational posts about hope, learning, growth, connections, etc.  Fashion bloggers, for example, would not be a good fit here.  ALL POSTS MUST BE FAMILY-FRIENDLY AND UPLIFTING.
  2. POST (when & how):  The LinkUp will open at 7:00am Mountain Time every Monday and close 24 hours later, 7:00am Tuesday.  Voting for favorites will open at 7:00am Tuesday and close at 7:00am Wednesday.  To add your blog post to the LinkUp, click the blue "add my link" button.  Remember to add a direct link to the specific post you want to share, not your blog's home page.
  3. OBSERVE THE LIMITS:  Let's save room for everybody--submissions are limited to 2 blog posts per person on each weekly LinkUp.  (This may change moving forward, but for now the limit is 2.)
  4. SHARE THE LOVE:  Read and comment on at least 3 other blog posts each week you submit your own post to the LinkUp.  This isn't a place to dump your links and run--we're here to help each other out and even make new friends.  When you comment, please use the hashtag #heartandsoullinkup at the end of your comment.  Voting on a favorite of the 3+ you read isn't required but is appreciated.
  5. INVITE OTHERS:  We need everyone's help in inviting others to see this LinkUp, so each participating blogger must do two things:  #1 Put a link to this LinkUp on your own blog so that others can find us--sidebar works best, but a tab works, too.  Something visible is ideal.  If you prefer, you can save an image from this post and use it at the end of your own blog post saying, "Find me at the Heart and Soul LinkUp" with an included link.  Whatever works for your particular blog.  #2 After posting your link in the LinkUp, the InLinkz program will let you share the blog post you just added on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, or Google+.  You must share on at least one of those platforms each time you post your link at the Heart & Soul LinkUp.
  6. LET ME SHARE:  By participating in this LinkUp, you are giving me the right to share your blog posts on social media.  When you are chosen as a reader favorite or as one of my own favorite posts of the week, you allow me to share a link back to your blog post plus an image from your post here on my blog (which gives you additional visibility). 
Two more suggestions for bloggers who participate in this Blog Hop:
  • It's gonna be Monday again before you know it.  If you'd like a reminder to participate each week, {follow LifeTales Books on Bloglovin'} and be sure you're signed up to receive e-mail notifications.  Or you can subscribe to this blog by e-mail--just scroll up and find "subscribe by e-mail" in the right sidebar. 
  • When your post is featured as a favorite, show it off!  Use the image below to celebrate--post it on your own blog with a link over here so your blog readers can see where you were featured.

Thanks, blogging friends, for sharing your fantastic blog posts that are good for the heart and soul!

Friday, November 2, 2018

#friyay from Ladies Who Love Heritage Makers

Welcome to #friyay -- our monthly feature on the first Fridays of the month during 2018.  It's a chance to find out what people are saying about Heritage Makers!

We'll start by hearing what Katie has to say.  She has been a Heritage Makers user for about 4 years now.  I have loved seeing what she does with her beautiful books.  She copies and pastes photos and entries from her blog into gorgeous Heritage Makers books that her family will always have and cherish.  I love her dedication to creating heritage.


Our second #friyay shout-out comes from Elin who has created gorgeous wall canvases for her home.  I love how she has made them match the decor of each room while showing off family pictures or inspirational words.


For more reasons Heritage Makers is the best, click the "What Makes Heritage Makers the Best" tab along the top!  You will be amazed.