Carrie has four daughters and runs Write On! Workshops--a summer writing camp for children.

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My scrap booking solution

I just finished my scrap booking for the week. After years of feeling guilty about not documenting my family photos, I’ve finally found something that is working for me.

Every Sunday, I log on to Becky Higgins. There, I work on creating my family digital scrapbook for 2011. I upload from my camera and my phone whatever photos I’ve taken during the week and put them in the book labeled “Family Scrapbook.” The week by week book has a place for me to put seven of the week’s favorite photos and a place to write about them. I can say for the first five months of 2011, my family is very well documented.

Then, I open up my girls’ individual digital scrapbook folders. I’ve decided (after seriously so much pondering) to give each of my girls a baby scrapbook, an elementary scrapbook, and a junior high-high school scrapbook. I put special photos from the week that are just about them in these individual books.

When I explain it, it sounds like it takes a lot of time. Truly, it doesn’t. I’m not doing anything fancy, just dropping in the photos and putting a quick note. But my notes are current and immediate. I can remember specific things the girls said or just how they felt because it just happened a couple of days ago.

This is such a far cry from my old system of trying to back track and pull photos out of the archives. I love that I am taking pictures with a purpose and documenting them right away. I do have years of doing this through blogs, but my blogs are inconsistent and often linked to other sites. This makes it hard for me to print them as a documented family history.

I have lots of lost years of undocumented photos sitting on my computer. I need to slowly start placing those in the girls’ baby and elementary books. But now that I have a plan and a method to this madness, I think I can slowly conquer it.

I have a baby book for my four year old I made on Shutterfly about her first year of life. At least twice a week I find it in some random place in the house. She takes it off the shelf and looks at it again and again.We all like to know where we came from. We like to remember people and places and experiences that created us. That’s why scrap booking (and blogging) is so important.

After a particularly trying year, I remember my friend Delyna made it a top priority to scrapbook the many good things that had happened to her family that year. There are always reasons to celebrate. Even just the fact that we are together tonight in a quiet house is reason to celebrate.  A scrapbook allows me to freeze small moments like this in between a couple of pages. It’s becoming one of my favorite Sunday rituals.

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