Thursday, February 14, 2019

Storybook Charities--and How to Donate

Heritage Makers believes--correctly--that everyone has a story.  Since publishing the {first personal storybook} well over a decade ago, Heritage Makers has recognized not only the need for a storybook in every home but the needs of two extra special groups of people.

Heritage Makers partners with Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep to provide sweet storybooks as needed keepsakes for families who face early infant loss.  These books are a treasured memory.

This cause is very personal to me.  You can read about how early infant loss has touched my family here:  {Healing From Grief through Family Stories}.  Unfortunately, many families lose little ones, so you may know one.  To nominate a family to receive a free book through this charitable program, or to donate to it, find more information at {this link}.

Heritage Makers matches cash donations at 100%!

Heritage Makers also partners with Tucked In to provide personalized storybooks for children living in homeless shelters.  In some cases, these books are the only photos the children have of themselves, and these storybooks raise self-esteem while providing positive reinforcement and hope.

To nominate a child to receive a free book through this charitable program, or to donate to it, find more information at {this link}.

You may donate unexpired Heritage Makes publishing points, cash, or your own time to create books for both of these causes.  

"To be doing good deeds is man's most glorious task."  -Sophocles

Please pin to share this important cause.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Heart & Soul LinkUp #12

Welcome to our newest linkup--a place where bloggers leave their latest and greatest blog posts (and sometimes #throwbacks, too).  You'll be able to find a variety of posts that are good for the heart and soul as bloggers leave their links all day today.

ANNOUNCEMENT:  The linkup program I use, InLinkz, has made some changes.  Unfortunately, we can no longer vote on favorites by clicking the little heart in the top right corner on Tuesdays.  InLinkz says they are working to bring back this feature, but from now on, in order to vote for your favorite blog posts (which determines the Reader Favorite to be highlighted the following week), you will need to comment on THIS blog post to tell me which of the posts left today are your favorites (up to 3).  I think the Reader Favorite is an important feature, so let's give it a go!  We love your votes.

Before diving in to new blog posts to love, here are the favorites from last week's linkup.


We again had a 2-way tie for Reader Favorite this week!  I can see why--these are both fantastic posts.  As usual, I'm adding links directly to the posts here so you can read them today if you missed them last week.

from Flossie at Super Mom Hacks

from Cary at Cary MacArthur: Personal Power Coach


from Marsha at Markets of Sunshine
I love Marsha's Adult Reward System.  I'm doing her Organizational Challenge this year but I need to better incorporate this reward system that goes with it!  I had never thought of something as simple as spices and citrus boiling in a pan to fill my house with lovely smells.  Aromatherapy goes a long way for me.  :)  

from Lori at Choosing Wisdom
We all have one, don't we?  I think sometimes that must be the way God intended it so that we can learn some things!  Lori asked 7 of her blogger friends to write a little something about how they overcome this difficulty, and I thought there were some great suggestions here.

from Penelope at Penelope Silvers: Writer
There are some great quotes and suggestions for fueling your inspiration through creativity.  This post spoke to me because I believe very strongly in the power of creativity and that EVERY PERSON is creative!  In my own work, some people think they can't preserve their photos and memories if they're "not creative," and not only is the thought false but the premise is, too.  I loved the suggestion here at Penelope's blog post about "cross pollination" and how learning a new skill or trying something new boosts creativity.  

Thanks to everyone who shared their posts last time.  If you were a favorite, celebrate on social media (or your blog) using this image.

Are you a blogger who would like to share your posts here?  You're welcome to--just check out the rules for participating (leaving your own links below) at the bottom of {this post}.

Let's see what our blogger friends have to share this week!  It's time for Heart & Soul LinkUp #12!  Don't forget to vote for your favorite posts in the comments below.  

Inlinkz Link Party

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Celebrating 100,000 Blog Visits with a photo yearbook giveaway!


Today we're celebrating passing the 100,000 blog visits milestone at LifeTales Books!  To thank you for all those visits, we're going to celebrate with a giveaway!

We don't often scroll through the digital images we have on our phones or computers, and when we do they are lacking the most important part of them--the STORY!  Or you might call them the memories.  One of my favorite ways to get those cherished snapshots into lives and hearts is with a yearbook.

yearbooks photo credit:  Denise Pehrson
I have 3 big reasons for loving yearbooks:
  1. The layout helps you out of Photo Overwhelm by encouraging you to choose 4-10 of your FAVORITE photos each month.  So often, we clog up our phones/cameras with photos we don't really need.  (Do you have 8 photos of essentially the same thing?  Do you have photos that were fun for the moment but wouldn't miss if they were gone?)  Just choose favorites!!  (Don't have 4 photos from a given month?  That's okay, too.)
  2. The yearbook is so well-organized!  You'll preserve your favorite photos and memories from one year in one slim book.  No mess, no hassle, no confusion.
  3. Because you're just focusing on ONE year instead of all the photos you own, you avoid additional Photo Overwhelm by staying laser-focused.
Of course, these are Heritage Makers yearbooks, so they're completely personal (no getting stuck in a template that doesn't fit you) and they're top-quality!  You're welcome to read {all the reasons I choose Heritage Makers} right there.  

Did you know that PRINT is one of the best photo storage methods there is!?  If you search "best photo storage methods," you'll get varying opinions, but the one thing they'll have in common is a recommendation to make sure you print your photos.  Print allows you to add the story (memories), yes, but it's also the least risky photo storage method.  (Ever had your computer crash?  Ever had a file become unreadable?  Remember floppy disks?  I rest my case.)

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!!

So let's enter the photo yearbook giveaway already!  Hurry and enter--it only runs from February 5-12, 2019.  There are multiple ways you can enter, and a couple of them you can do once a day!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you are chosen as the winner, keep reading so you'll know what you will need to do.  

If you are not the winner, you have two similarly fantastic options!  Option #1 is to check out this video, "How to Stop Being Overwhelmed by Your Pictures: a yearbook tutorial."  Everything you'll need to know is there, including ideas for going from an overwhelming amount of photos to a manageable amount.  And, of course, I show you how simple it is to create a yearbook!

Option #2 is to use my Digital Scrapbooking For Hire services.  I can be your memory-keeping partner, rolling up my sleeves to do all the work.

Now here's what the giveaway 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'd really like a different style, I can work with you, so let me know.  
  3. E-mail me 4-10 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 (highest quality).
  4. I do the work, you get the benefits.  :)  It doesn't get any easier than that!
Good luck!  And from the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU for all the blog visits, comments, pins, shares, tweets, and general support at LifeTales Books.

Monday, February 4, 2019

Heart & Soul LinkUp #11

Happy Monday!  Mondays are good days here at LifeTales Books because it's linkup day.  That means several bloggers will be sharing their blog posts here today.  All the blog posts follow our theme, so they relate to something that's good for the heart and soul.  And who doesn't need a little more of that?!

The goal of the Heart & Soul LinkUp is to create a little community of like-minded bloggers who can get to know and support each other so that all bloggers and readers to come away uplifted.  Our linkup is still new and small, so we invite other bloggers to join us and share their blog posts below.  Everyone is welcome to read these great posts, of course, but bloggers can find the rules for participating (leaving your own links below) at the bottom of {this post}.

Before we find new blog posts to enjoy, let's highlight the favorites from last week!  If you missed them before, there's a link to each one.


We had a 2-way tie for Reader Favorite this week!  Favorites were:

from Jennifer at LifeTales Books

from Lori at Choosing Wisdom


from Shannon at DeBord Studios
Maybe it's just because I've been to what I'd call a mini-class on calligraphy from Shannon that I really liked this post.  Calligraphy is intentional and calming, and I always think that's a good idea!  :)  I thought this Q&A was interesting.  Shannon does amazing custom pieces and envelope addressing, too.

from Penelope at Penelope Silvers
I've been focusing lately on the power of my thoughts and noticing how often they are negative (and how willing I am, apparently, to let my negative thoughts keep going for a long time).  So this post on managing and improving thoughts really spoke to me this week.

from Chloe at Celebrate and Decorate
I enjoyed this peek into the tablescape Chloe created for a romantic dinner at home.  I love the Paris theme and the splashes of red, and I love the lighting, too.  What a fun creation to make an occasion extra special.  

Thanks for sharing your lovely blog posts with us!  If your post was one of this week's favorites, but sure to celebrate on social media using this image.

Now let's find out what new blog posts we're going to love this week at Heart & Soul LinkUp #11!