I wear my title of Memory Keeper in our house very proudly. Pictures, mementos and videos mean a lot to me and there’s a history to it. My parents divorced when I was five and our home videos were lost in the shuffle. So were half of my baby photos and most of my childhood mementos. When I want to bring back good old memories, I look at my Childhood Pinterest Board! It makes me sad to be missing these nicknacks and it makes me try even harder to preserve memories for my girls. I love sharing my system with others and at the same time, hearing what others do.
Photo #1/2 (above) A file box (from IKEA) that has a file for every school year. I plan to save my favorite and most memorable school papers and reports here. I loved this bloggers organizing system that came with FREE printable labels so that’s what I used to prep these boxes for my girls.
3. Photo Boxes-Michaels JUST had these photo boxes on save for $1 something! I bought three for each kid. I labeled them ages Birth-6, 7-12 and 13-18. I know as a kid I had loads of school projects that required me to get into my family photo albums and copy, cut then paste pictures. Now adays this is not as easy with everything going digital. Every now and then Shutterfly (online photo site that I upload my family photos to in folders by year then sub folders grouped quarterly) offers FREE 101 prints. I order special photos for each girl to add to their boxes. Inside their boxes the photos are grouped in envelopes by their age. These pictures will go with them when they are older. And they can be shuffled through anytime because they are theirs to keep. This is no cost to me and I like having nice photos on hand that they can use instead of scrambling and going to the printer when they need a picture in their hands.
4. Memory Boxes-I bought two of these memory boxes from Home Goods for each child. Inside are mementos that need more space such as a Baptism candle, trophies, a few outfits that I can’t let go from each girl (I want to make them into a quilt for them someday) and special gifts that they will get when they are older like a cross necklace from their grandparents that would get lost of broken if I gave it to them now.
5. Pregnancy Journals-For each pregnancy I kept a journal. It was a journal with prompts. Each child gets one of these (they are stored in their Memory Box, #4). Since I have girls, I think they will love knowing what my pregnancies and births were like when they are in the same place in life someday!
7. Baby Books-These books are filled with prompts to record special memories from age birth-five. They are stored in the Memory Boxes, #4
8. First Year Scrapbooks-A friend MADE me a first year scrapbook that I simply had to fill in with pictures when my first baby was born. I used to be a HUGE scrapbooker so these were more of a hobby for me than anything. I made one for baby #2 but this is something I am letting go with baby #3 because I now prefer digital scrapbooking.
9. Journals-I bought each child a journal to write in sporadically. I am a writer. I have 19 of my own diaries. I love to write my thoughts, fears, wishes, hopes and dreams. Since the baby books have so much journaling I haven’t used these that much but I can see me writing in them later on as the girls get older.
Childhood Photobook-Since Shutterfly is an amazing site that has thousands of my pictures saved (I also keep them on an external drive just in case) I plan to make a book for each of our kids when they graduate from high school. A few pages for each year of their lives. It beats printing my family yearbook off each year for each kid (too costly) and making a book for each kid, each year (too time consuming).
Video-As you can see, photography and scrapbooking are hobbies of mine. I also LOVE making videos on my mac. I took a few courses at the Apple store and I can whip up a video in less than an hour now. I made a 3-5 minute video for each of the kids birthdays. There is a main video set to music that I show at their birthday party with the family. Then there are different chapers with short clips of videos I took during that year.
6. Since each pregnancy and birth were such special times to my husband and I, I documented them in a digtital scrapbook (very little journaling, mainly pictures). I ordered both FREE by waiting for Shutterfly’s 8×8 free book coupon.
First Year Book-I made each girl a digital first year book that I am keeping for myself. They change SO MUCH in that first year, I wanted to have these memories to cherish myself.
Family Yearbooks-Every year I print a digital book that is organized by month of all the special happenings for our family. These yearbooks end up having about 75-100 pages and cost about $100. I don’t print any of the pictures, I just use these books as my photo books. They are saved in your account forever which is a great backup in case of a fire.
Video-I make a copy of each child’s yearly video for my husband and I. I also burn our videos from the year onto a DVD so that we have them to watch on a lazy day!