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Organize photos

Traditionally, it’s time to enter white tornado mode: pulling back couches for vacuuming, wiping off door frames and baseboards, and cleaning other places oft ignored during the chilly winter months.

Purging closets may also be on the list; determining what can be tossed, donated, or placed in a garage sale.

There’s a box crammed with photographs, and one filled with Grandma’s stuff. Is that envelope full of Dad’s military memorabilia? As tempting as it may be to just put it all back and deal with it another day, this is another day. You have been curator of family mementos long enough.  It’s time to parcel it out.

Call appropriate people in the family to help you work through it, and set a date and time.  Once it has been scheduled, it will be easier to accomplish.

The day of the organizing session, crank up some old school party music. Have fun with it.


Do NOT throw anything away without checking with everyone in the family first.  Unbeknownst to you, there may be items with which someone has a sentimental association.

Work through boxes/bags of memorabilia first. Once a determination has been made as to what will be retained, consider how important those items had been for someone to have kept them in the first instance.  It would be a shame to continually hide them away where no one can see them.  Get creative. For example:

–        If you do have some military related items, display them in a shadow box and gift it to someone in the family who would appreciate it the most.

–        Some items might be valuable to the local historical association if they are related to the community’s history.

–        I’ve seen small items converted into drawer handles.

Photographs can be scanned and emailed to relatives who may not have copies.  Otherwise, again, get creative.  Examples:

–        I have seen scanned photos printed onto cloth and integrated into a quilt.

–        Copies of photos can be creatively laminated, ie., lampshades, placemats, mirror frames, etc.

–        There are websites where you can upload images to create personally designed ties, etc.

Antique malls are filled with photographs and memorabilia once considered treasured.

Ensure that your family’s treasures will continue to be enjoyed by future generations.


“Who are those people and why do we have photographs of them?” Read the rest of this entry »

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