Friday, July 8, 2011

Pictures-What To Do With All of Them

You're the one that has all the family photos in boxes or old photo books.  If you are like many, some of the photos are marked, but many are not.  No one else will take them, so you have them all.  You want to pass them on, but how can you do it with little or no information on the pictures?  You don't want to throw them out, but how can you make it more attractive for your family to take them?  Trying to hand someone shoe boxes full of photos or photo albums that are falling apart is not going to go over very well. 
First, realize that not everyone is interested in pictures of people they do not know or places that are umarked.  Be realistic about the photos that should be given to someone who is interested in keeping them and the family history.  Older pictures marked with names and relations to others makes a much more attractive and sentimental display. 
Give your self permission to toss the pictures of individuals no one knows.  If they are unknown, no one will miss them.  If Aunt Mary had pictures of all the trips she took around the world, choose a few from each trip.  Do not feel guilty by throwing them away.  It was her trip, not yours.  If there are multiple pictures, give yourself permission to throw out the duplicates.

You also have all the those pictures of your children you had taken at a professional studio, Target, JCPenney, or elsewhere.  What should you do with those?    If you sent pictures of your children to relatives over the years, and you get them back after the relative passes, throw those out because you already have those.  Another good rule to follow is that you are not required to keep pictures of other peoples children, that is their parents job.  That includes all the Christmas pictures you are sent over the years. 

Many clients tell me that they are going to take all those photos and put them in a scrapbook one day.  If your kids are out of college and you still have not done it, either pay someone to do it, or tell yourself it is okay that you have not done it and pick out those that mean the most to you and eliminate the remainder if your children do not want them.  

Maybe Uncle Bob had hundreds of slides or 8mm film but you have no projector to figure out what is on them.  Many companies offer services to turn those slides and 8mm film into a DVD.  The cost is minimal and it might be funny to watch them at a family reunion.  Those pictures are doing no good in a box in the basement.  Photos can also be scanned and placed on a DVD for a cost.  I found one company online that did 2500 photos for $150.  If you choose the photos wisely, you will have a great DVD to share.