So you take a million family photos with your phone, am I right? And then what happens to them? Usually nothing. You may dump them into a folder on your computer whenever your phone is full and you need to clean it off, but then you never organize, look at, or display those memories. It’s a shame, and definitely one of the downsides to our phones being our primary memory recorder. Yes, it’s super convenient and we have way more photos of our kids now then when you had to dig out the old point-and-shoot or DSLR, but because there are so many we often neglect organizing and actually printing them. So I thought I’d share a few easy tips for keeping your family photos organized so you can access, print, and display them.
1. Create a family photo stream.
One of my favorite ways to share and keep track of our favorite family photos is by creating a family photo stream. My husband and I have one so we can share the best photos that we take on each of our phones whenever we’re out and about or home with our kids. Sometimes I would never see the adorable little gems my husband would take on his phone — with the photo stream we are always sharing and never miss seeing them. It is also an easy way to find and save our favorites instead of sorting through a camera roll with 2000 photos, half of which are blurry, duplicates, or just random pics.
If you have an iPhone and don’t know how to set up a photo stream, go to your “photos” icon on your phone. Then tap the cloud icon where it says “shared. Next hit the + sign to set up a new shared stream. Invite whoever you want! I have one with my husband and one with the moms from my playgroup where we’ve shared photos of our kids for 3+ years!
2. Delete as you go.
If you are taking 25 photos of your kids in a row hoping to get just one usable image (I know my kids never stop moving so there are so many blurry photos in my camera roll) try to go back and delete the bad and blurry ones. I often “favorite” the best one, edit it and rotate it the opposite direction so it stands apart from the rest, and then go back and quickly select and delete the bad ones. It is a fast and easy way to remove unwanted photos from your phone, that way you aren’t backing up all of those unwanted images when you back up to your computer.
3. Backup to your computer monthly.
An easy way to keep your images organized is to do a monthly phone backup to your computer. That way, instead of dumping 2000 photos to a general “phone backup” folder where all of those images get jumbled and lost, you have your memories organized monthly. If you haven’t been doing this, just go back and create monthly folders and then select the images from each month and drag and drop into that month’s folder — it will take a little time but is so worth it in the long run.
Organizing my photos has become so much easier since Intel asked me to test out and play around with their new Intel All in One. The screen is HUGE, which makes viewing lots of images at one time much easier. It’s a breeze to set up and use. Plus it has a touch screen (yep, TOUCH!) so I can drag, swipe, and drop photos from one place to another like it ain’t no thang. It’s also really upped my creative output for the blog too, but that’s another post for another time.
4. Dropbox is your BFF.
My favorite way to be able to access and backup all of my images is with Dropbox. That way whether I’m on my desktop or laptop, I can find what I’m looking for. And if anything were ever to happen to those devices, all of our memories are backed up online to our Dropbox. It’s also a fun and easy way to share folders with family and friends.
5. Do something with your favorite photos.
We don’t have to print out a roll of images anymore, which is nice since most of them were blah photos anyways. But we should print or display our favorites. For vacations, special occasions, and yearly documentation of my kids I like to create coffee table books. I’ve made them for our engagement photos, wedding photos I loved that didn’t fit into our official album, our honeymoon, and other family vacations. I also have one for each year of Charlie’s life (except I’m behind and haven’t done year four even though he’s halfway done with year five already) and plan to do one from Calvin’s first year as well. I really do go back and look at them. I used Blurb to create the ones of Charlie (seen at the top of the post) and loved the quality of my books (spring for the hardcover, large size, and good paper – it’s definitely worth it!) You can get 15% off at Blurb now through the end of July with code SUMMER15. I used My Publisher for the ones below and the image wrap hardcover books have a beautiful quality and make for lasting albums. Right now you can get a free 8.5″ x 11.25″ photo book Classic book through 7/26/15 or 50% off quality hardcover photo books from MyPublisher through 8/3/15 (the ones I made are the nicer, hardcover style). Pinhole Press is another great option (you can make great, smaller books for kiddos too!)
I also love displaying lots of images at once with custom photo art from Minted. It’s a fun way to include lots of your favorite photos but still displays them in a clean and stylish way. Canvases are another great option. The important thing is displaying your memories!
I hope these tips help you get your photos off of your phone and organized so that you can preserve and enjoy them for years to come. Do you have any other tips or favorite ways you keep your family memories organized?
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