All Those Photos

You’ve been pretty good about taking photos for special moments (or daily ones) along the way, but that means you have a lot of photos. At times that can be overwhelming. Dread of more photos can even make you not want to take more. How can you keep the balance between remembering all the blessings and not drowning in them?

There are a bunch of ways to store your photo collection, both physical and digital. At different stages in life, one will probably work better than another. Here’s one that has worked well for me for a few years now.

Once we’ve come back from a special time or trip, I make time to pull together a photo album as soon as I can. I use an online site like Shutterfly or Snapfish, where a couple of hours will get me a complete album, clean and shipped to my door.

The layouts are fairly easy to use, and the story can be combined with the photos. This allows the details to be captured along with the photos before the memories fade (as they so quickly do).

Remember, the memories are what are important, so you don’t have to go overboard on embellishments or custom layouts. Capture the joy of the time and carry on with life. Write down what was important and enjoy the photos in a simple group. Pick out the best photos and simply store the rest in digital files. You may want to reference them some day, but they don’t all have to go in one album.

Once you have an account, you can save the book and come back to it later. You don’t have to finish it in one shot. So you can do a few pages at a time of summer activities, but you will finish it up and print it in the fall.

Because you can save the projects, watch for deals before you order. Sales happen on a regular basis, on the sites I’ve used, so take advantage of them.

Keep your effort simple and soon. Enjoy!

Start Fresh Now

You know those mornings where the day gets off to a rough start? By noon you’re ready to throw in the towel? Nothing is working, emergencies abound, tempers flare, etc. You’re not even sure why you got out of bed because nothing has been accomplished. The temptation is strong to write off the day as worthless, grab the bag of chocolate chip cookies for consolation, and wait until the next morning’s fresh start to try again. A blank slate is our only hope.

Except it’s not.

Recently a friend encouraged me with some wise insight.¬†Instead of giving up on the day at noon, that’s the cue to stop and regroup. Pause. Pray for grace and wisdom. Seek a proper perspective on the day and a renewed focus. Plant our feet in the Word of God. Remember our priorities and how they direct our work. Remind ourselves of what matters.

Then, having turned our eyes in the right direction, we can walk on confidently and redeem the day. There is still hope. It is not too late. Even now, no matter the hour or what has already happened in the day, we have all we need to love God and love our neighbor and fulfill our callings well.