|Family Scrapbook featuring trip to Texas!|
Many times, overwhelmed mommas are inspired to ask me about scrapbooking their children's lives but they don't have the supplies, knowledge, or time to get started. I see the distraught faces and want to give them a HUGE hug for the desire to preserve their children's memories (and their own). Some are crafty. Some, not so much. But everyone who has asked me, wants to create a memory book for their family.
To those sweet women (and men), I say this... start small. What's more important, that you record your memory or that you make a crafty project about a memory? It's recording the memory in words and pictures where possible.
|Cover for my annual blog book|
I offer this tip. Make a blog book. A blog book is simply this... blog like entries recorded on your computer that is printed at the end of the year. Here are the steps to making a blog book, then I'll share why I do it this way.
- Use a text program such as MS Word Mac Text Edit, or OO Writer.
- Create one document per month and save the file with the month and year (01 Jan 2014, 02 Feb 2014, etc) in the file name.
- Format your page to have at least a 1 inch margin on all sides.
- On the first page, type the month and year again (this will be the title for each month's chapter).
- Create a blog like entry. Give your entry a date, a title if you like, insert a photo (or two) and then write about the memory. You can capture memories without photos as well. Just be sure to date your entries.
- When the year is complete, export your documents to individual PDF files. Then use a PDF editor to merge the PDF files into one text document.
- Upload to your content file to a Print-on-Demand company such as Lulu.com.
- Follow the websites book compilation instructions and then order your book.
|Text Document for Blog Book|
NOW THE WHYs
Why do I do this method?
- I use my blog book to capture my memories until I have time to make a scrapbook page.
- By using photos for my entries, I can write a month (or sometimes three) later rather than daily.
- I don't want to share all of our family details with the world, this 'blog' is entirely off line.
- I don't journal.
- I don't have to scrapbook every memory.
Here's another great secret. Have your spouse and kids help you with your blogging (or whoever makes up your family). I'll take photos of my kid's events and then have them tell me their memories of it. I'll say, "Uno says...." to help the reader of this blog book know that these are Uno's words and not mine. Takes a HUGE load off my shoulders. The rest of the book is written from my voice. I say, "I", "me", "my", etc. Don't try to write as a narrator. Write as yourself and your other family members to help add their voice to your family project.
|Scrapbooking can happen later. But if I don't have the|
memories recorded, I won't have anything to write.
Some day I might not want to scrapbook. Maybe my kids will do all of their own scrapbooking. I know the memories are recorded and waiting to be put in another format. Isn't that comforting?
Most importantly, I won't have to put every photo in a scrapbook. What a relief! Some photos are only triggers to remember something funny, interesting, or even sad in our lives. I can write about the memory in my blog book and I am free from having to put it into a scrapbook. I only scrapbook memories and events that a) have a lot of photos and b) are worth scrapbooking.
I'm sure there is much more that I could share in this How To Record Your Personal History post. However, I'll leave the comment section for additional discussion on anything I've neglected to cover.
My greatest desire for anyone who wants to capture the memories that are happening daily is this: RECORD SOMETHING.
Find a way that works for you. But don't forget to take photos, label them, and write down the memory that goes with them. Some day, either you or someone else can convert those memories into a presentation. But without the memories recorded... no one can't do it.
Breathe easy. You can do it.