What is Memory Keeping? Ask multiple people and you will get many different answers. The truth is, it’s whatever you make it. Memory Keeping is anything that documents past and/or current memories for yourself or someone else.
Why is Memory Keeping important to you? Why do you take photos? Do you keep a journal? Do you collect things and/or save momentos? Is your interest in memory keeping for yourself only or for others?
There’s no wrong way and there’s no right way to do Memory Keeping. And the possibilities seem to be endless as technology has evolved to provide multiple solutions. But don’t let the multitude of options be an obstacle. Think about your personal ‘why’ and pick something specific to work on. Consider setting one short-term goal (such as a photobook project) and one long-term goal focused on getting photos/memories more organized. Remember that the joy is in making the journey, not just arriving at the destination. Memory Keeping in itself should be fun!
Below are some possibilities to consider if you’re just getting started in your memory-keeping journey:
Social Media Sharing
A growing trend and a great way to enjoy digital photo images. Many styles and themes are available and the multitude of printing websites continues to grow. With so many options, it’s hard to choose, but ‘The Photo Book Guru’ has a nice collection of reviews to help make the choice easier.
Whether traditional paper scrapbooks or digital scrapbooks, the possibilities are endless. ‘Pocket Scrapping’ is a simplified block design approach made famous by Becky Higgins’ Project Life series. Popular software options for scrapbooking are Photoshop Elements, and Forever Artisan. Or jump right into one of the latest trends and scrapbook directly on a smartphone with an easy to use scrapbooking app.
This is probably the oldest form of Memory Keeping. Diaries, Art Journals, Bullet Journals are still popular. A great approach is The ‘Five Minute Journal’ which promises a happier you with journaling focused on the positives. Furthermore, there are now options to journal electronically with your smartphone using Apps such as ‘Momento’ (iphone only) or ‘DayOne’ or ‘The Five Minute Journal’ (Iphone or Android).
Services such as Amazon Family Vault, Google Photos and FOREVER provide a place to build a family archive with photos, videos and documents. Read the fine -print and make sure it’s a service that will be around for the long haul. And if you use multiple platforms, ‘Collectionnaire’ creates an index that points to multiple websites.
From framed prints, canvas collage, to photo gifts, there are many ways to enjoy photo images. Check out my collection of custom wall art canvases at The Memory Curator Etsy Shop.
Genealogy and Family Tree websites have continued to improve as more records are digitized and more people join. When selecting a site, make sure it allows ‘GEDCOM’ export so that you can download your family tree in case you change your mind! Below are some favorites that have a good chance of being around long-term:
- Ancestry.com (has most records & dna)
- MyHeritage (best for local searching)
- Geni (collaborative world family tree)
- FamilySearch (totally free use)
Another option is to record the memory within the Photo’s metadata itself. Using a photo organizing tool such as Photo Mechanic or Adobe Bridge (free), or using a family archive site such as ‘FOREVER’ allows you to document stories and save them in the image file. Or if you use a mac, a tool such as Sniptag creates a simple user interface.
This is just a short list of the possibilities that await for Memory Keeping. In all cases, the first step is to make sure that all your memories are safe from disaster. This means physical items such as printed photos/keepsakes are protected and stored in archival safe containers. And that digital items are collected in one place with backups in place. If you need help with any of this, please reach out to me.
For more information and for additional Memory Keeping ideas, be sure to follow me on Pinterest.