I know what you're thinking, "Your'e a photographer, you must take zillions of pictures of your life!" WRONG. I'm not gonna lie, getting an iPhone 5 years ago was a game changer. I am able to take image after image anywhere I go. Even so, I feel like there is a lot of my life that I have forgotten to capture. Many times when I whip out my phone I think, "Ehh that lighting is bad," "That's not an Instagram worthy event," and of course "I don't look good today." I think with all to social media, I often forget that not every picture needs to be shared.
When I was in elementary school, I anxiously waited for any field trip so that I would have an excuse to ask for a disposable camera. I shot EVERYTHING, trees, ducks, you name it, I took a picture of it. At one point my mom cut me off and told me that she would not pay to develop my film if I could not guarantee her at least 5 images with me in them!
Fast forward to middle school, I started journaling (let's be honest, it was a pink diary with a lock haha). I didn't write often, since the diary lasted me three years of middle school, but it's nice to see what kinds of things mini Stacy worried about. I kept a diary until my senior year of high school, then I just stopped.
Since high school, so much happened in my life (marriage, baby, house, etc.). The sad part is I feel like I hardly remember it. All of the zillion images on my phone are stored in some random folder on my computer (or worse, have been lost). Now that I have Penny, I have been trying to make a conscious effort to save all of these memories in a safe place. I have officially completed the design of her first book (now I just need to order it)! I am also considering starting up some kind of personal journal.
My goal for this new year of Penny's life is to pull out the ol' DSLR and snap some pictures every month. Not just staged images where she is all dolled up, but all the life in-between. This is my first attempt at that. I call this, Bath Time | 13 Months.
Now that you know my goals, I want to share some of the tips that I plan to use myself...
There are tons of apps out there that let you journal on your phone. They make it look so easy. You can incorporate pictures and they can even send you reminders to journal. I have read many articles about the benefits of journaling too! I think the app that I am going to try is One Day. Remember, it doesn't have to be perfect. Plus, think of all the laughs that you will get from reading them a few years down then line!
2. Print Your Pictures
I have been on the hunt for a picture from my first birthday. I would like to recreate it with Penny since my mom kept that dress. While I was searching through endless boxes in my parents' room, it made me sad. I don't have more than 10 printed images of Penny in the whole house. They way technology is moving, I recommend that you print those bad boys! One of my favorite places to get prints from is mpix.com . The quality is great!
3. Social Media
This goes along with printing your photos. Raise your hand if you remember the good old days of Myspace? Well, that's long gone now and so is everything that we worked so hard to create and upload. Even though I am sure we are happy that many of those photos will never see the light of day again, the same thing may happen to Facebook or Instagram. There are many images on there that I'm sure are not saved anywhere else. Something that I am going to start is a Chatbooks subscription. It takes your Instagram feed and turns it into a cute little book! After 60 images it automatically creates you book and BAM, instant memories. Plus the price is very reasonable.
My dad has always been a video guy. We have endless home movies stored in multiple rooms of the house. I can vividly remember him lugging around that huge VHS camera to all of our concerts and vacations. Although these videos are now something that even my husband is not allowed to watch because I would die of embarrassment, I am glad they are there. I think the art of home movies has officially died out and it needs to make a comeback. When is the last time anyone took a video that was more than 60 seconds? Start today, I know I will! Capture the sound of your significant other's voice, bath time with the kidos, silly dog moments, anything.
5. Be Present
Many of these tips are great, except who gets left out, the person taking the pictures or videos. That's one excuse, the other one is "I'm not photo ready today." That's my favorite excuse. You may never reach that ideal weight, but time will keep ticking on. If anything, you'll end up like me, totally relating to that meme going around that says, "I wish I was as fat as the first time I thought I was fat!" hahaha. When your kids are much older and looking back on these pictures they won't care that you were wearing sweatpants. So hand over the camera and start being present in photos too! My new motto is crazy hair, don't care!
Oh, and a bonus tip, schedule a session with a photographer. These images will guarantee that you are in front of the camera!