Sunday, January 8, 2012

Life in review, and a question

Tomorrow begins E's turn to be honored by her class as "Star of the Week." It's a sweet tradition where each child is feted in turn. The week begins with E's presentation of her life story via poster board, and ends with a little party that the other four of us will attend on Friday morning.

So last night I stayed up for many, many hours to go through photos and find a nice range to print for her project. I think we're pretty average in our use of the digital camera, and I learned this week that I've saved 19,000 family photos since E was born, dutifully cataloged month by month. I probably looked at 18,000 of them, not wanting to miss the flattering light that made her hair look red or when her cheeks were still so chubby she almost had dimples. I realized just how often we go to the aquarium, I saw her grow bigger in consecutive trips to the same beach, I watched her smile in Michigan and Manhattan and downtown.

July 2007. E's first trip to Niagara Falls. I grew up about two miles from that spot.

It was heartwarming and heartwrenching, and if I was a slow-down-time kind of gal (though you know I'm not), this would have been heart-stopping. I watched her grow with a flick of the cursor. It was, you know what?, a lot of fun. And after I clicked 'send' on my curated version of her entire existence and we drove to pick up the prints this morning, she loved flipping through them, too.

My question is this: how do you organize your photos? Do you take the time to tag them? Do you keep them on your computer? On Flickr or Photobucket or Picasa or something similar? What do you do?

(Ours are saved in folders by month and live on the computer and are backed up on an external hard drive. I felt good about this until I started flipping through 19,000 of them to find 45 or so from which E glued only about 20 of them to her poster. Thoughts?)




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