Bring Your Memories to Life (of a Photo Organizer)

When you spend your days (and sometimes nights) working with other people’s memories, you can begin to overthink your collection. My photo collection is relatively organized, but it’s not perfect (of course, I am probably the only one who knows that). I am always thinking about what I want to do with my memories, and how I can bring my memories to life when I should be grateful for the legacy I have created for my family. 

Why share memories daily?

As I approach my 50th birthday, I have been sharing 10 photos daily for every year of my life. I did this for two main reasons.

 1.  I am connecting with my memories and hoping to connect with my friends and family who have helped me make those memories over the last 50 years!

 2.  I HOPE to inspire others to connect with their memories through their photos, videos, and memorabilia. It is amazing when you can find your memories within seconds to share with others or just bring them a smile.

Image of Lisa in 1983

Some years it was easy to pick ten photos, and some years, it was incredibly hard! Most of the time, I felt like I needed more than ten to tell the story of that year, but occasionally, there were not too many good pictures to share. (mostly the 1980s) 

I encourage everyone to do something similar to bring their own memories to life! Any significant birthday or anniversary is a great time to do this. (I did something similar on Facebook/Instagram for my 40th & 45th birthday.)

A How-To Guide: Bringing Your Memories to Life

1. Set a “goal” for the number of pictures you are looking for.

I chose 10 because that’s how many photos you can have in an Instagram carousel post (and 500 at the end makes for a nice number.) 

    • Remember this number is just a guideline. Some people need a hard goal, and others just need a loose number.
    • It doesn’t have to be divided by year like me, it could be some from early childhood, elementary school, junior high, high school, college, etc. It could also be by decade or themes in your life. 

2. Write out a timeline.

    • I recommend a spreadsheet or Word document so that you can easily make changes, but you can write it out on paper.
    • Keep this timeline with your photos to help other family members.
    • There are big milestones like birth, graduation, and weddings, but you might also want to include trips, jobs, or anything else that is important. 

3. Think about what is important to YOU! 

    • These are things that may not make your timeline, but they can still be significant in your story.
    • Some of my examples:
      • Each year we do a family Halloween costume.
      • We have memberships to the Zoo, Lauritzen Gardens, Durham, Joslyn, and we added the Luminarium this year. I try to include at least one of these each year because it’s a connection to Omaha. 
      • I made it a point to include a picture with each one of my nieces and nephews in the year they were born.
      • I tried to include as many people as possible from each era of my life, including both friends and family.

4. Start to write down the stories behind the photos so they can live on forever.

    • Write in a Word document that you can save in your Memories Hub.
    • Add to the caption in the digital photo so that you can be connected to that photo.

This can be daunting if you have a large collection of memories. Start small and just work on the part of your life that is most significant to you. Remember, if you need any help with the process, that is what I am in here for, and I would love to schedule a time to chat. 

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