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Pictures. Keeping the Memories

Yesterday I was reading a blog post from someone I follow. Walking Chester is a treat for me. Great pics of an adorable dog, and fun writing. The topic for yesterday’s reading was The Pitcher Purge. I’m not sure if that was a typo or a play on words my tired mind didn’t grasp, but the bottom line is that it was about dealing with boxes of old images. It was very relatable.

Image of photos stored in bins.

For over a decade now, I’ve had our bins of photos right in my path, hoping they would annoy me enough that I would deal with them. My approach changed over the years. First I was going to label and date them all. That was tricky since Hudi and Zeb look so much alike as babies that labeling started to become less accurate than the ideal.

I thought of hiring someone to sort. At least they would have fresh eyes and be able to filter out the doubles.

Then I gave up and kind of hoped they would sort themselves.

That worked as expected.

Nothing changed until my next burst of inspiration which had me purchasing a wand scanner.

Of all the methodology this was perhaps the most solid. I scanned many images, putting them in digital files based by year and decade. The images were names according to who was in them and sometimes where. If I mis-named a child or time, it was easy to rename and re-file.

Life took me off the picture path for a bit. When I came back to the project, it was a few years later, and I didn’t remember my methodology.

So I started fresh. Inspired by Hudi and Mollie’s wedding, I dug through the boxes again. To my amazement, I found that the scanner was no longer the best option. Cellphones changed over the years. Photographed images of the photos come out better than scans of those originals.

Can you tell which image is a scan, and which is a photo of the original?

The scanned image is on the left. (Or top if you are viewing on a mobile device.)

I lined up a bunch of pictures on a picnic table on a non-windy day, and quickly took photos from my phone. Another day, I laid them out on a bed. A pretty good guestimate on time was about 300 images processed in about half an hour. Not bad.

A perk is that now all those images are digital and easily organized better another time. I can even take on that task while waiting for a flight.

I sifted through memories to share on our (and other family members’) video devices (like Google Nest). So simple.

We bundled up the hard copies and gave each son a stack, but the digital memories are now there at our fingertips.

Boxes begone! It’s about time.

14 replies on “Pictures. Keeping the Memories”

Excellent idea! I’m going to try it! Pitcher is a Midwest joke, somehow this one teacher my daughter had just could not say picture without it coming out as pitcher! It drove her crazy! Glad to hear I’m not alone!

I purposefully used a pic of Uncle John, knowing you were one of my most dedicated readers 🙂 Of course CJ, the other train buff, was there. The image on the left is Hudi.

Within the past several years I carried 3 Bankers boxes to the eldest daughters. I had started organizing, so she has a start. They go back 56 years and then some. Perhaps when she retires she will feel more like organizing than I . Oh ye of great energy! Proud of you for your early start.

I was luckier than many since digital photography kicked into place while my kids were younger. So I only had a couple of decades to catch up on.

Chrissie, great idea, thank you! Quick question: did you take photos one at a time, or do them in groups and somehow separate them online??

Great question. I’m lazy and take a zillion images so I go to my Google Photo account and look through images to get an idea for a post. Then I choose the images I want to use and download them into a zip file. That file opens in a folder that I then go through to rename the images. Those are the ones I use.

Oh shoot. I thought this was a comment on my other blog post. So I answered weird. Sorry. I took the pics one-by-one-when I averaged 300 in a half hour. The only oddness is that in my Google photos timeline it shows I took the photos this year when the originals were from decades past.

OMG, Chrissie, you’re inspiring me! I have a TON of photos too! A “wand” scanner, eh? Must check out Amazon for it! (I have an inkjet printer that also allegedly scans, but it never works!)

No need to spend the money. I was saying that taking images of the images from my phone is actually as good or better than the scanner 🙂 but it will be fun to see your treasures as you record them. I hope you do share some on your own posts.

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