Help a Mama Out!

The kids' baby books:
fill in the blank pages & about as close as I'm getting right now to scrapbooking!
I am not a scrapbooker.
I've tried.
I made one my senior year of high school.
It is currently in a box up high in my closet.
A friend helped guide me to the products I need and I did make one for Will's first year:

I made 4 for his first year.
I had a lot of stuff saved & pictures and it took 4 12x12 albums!
They currently reside up high in the linen/toy closet in my hall.
I can't even close one of them but I refused to make 5!
 I have no hope of getting 1 done for Ellie at this point.

Currently, I'm throwing cards I want to save, random news articles about my kids, a magazine picture that recently came out with Ellie in it, etc into this box:
 After the 4 album per year scrapbooking event, I decided to just print out pictures and put them in an album.
This worked okay... until Ellie was born & I just don't have the time.
So here's random photos and stuff saved in a tub from 2010.
(Goodness, this is embarrassing!)
 Before kids, I did pretty good about putting pictures in albums and labeling the photos:
now they are in cabinets and we never look at them.
But I have them and they are done.

I just don't love scrapbooking.  It's not my thing.  I don't have a lot of free time and when I do, I don't want to spend it pulling out all the fun scrapbooking stuff and setting it up and then cleaning it up...
I do love pictures and I want a hard copy of them.
But I'm not good about printing them out and putting them in albums... and if I do that, what am I supposed to do with the random cards/theater tickets/newspaper articles featuring my kids that I want to save???

I want to be more organized and I want a quick and easy way to document our family history!
What can I do?
Can I just get a tub per year like I'm doing so far this year & toss cards/etc in it and call it done?
Also, one of my huge goals is to get my blog printed out but I haven't figured out which site is best and easiest to use.  Any ideas?  I want very simple/user friendly!!!

Help!  Any suggestions?
How do you organize your photos if you don't scrap book?
How do you organize the extra stuff you want to save?

I really want 2012 to be the year I get caught up and get organized and find a system that will work for us without eating up what little free time I have or taking over my dining room table.
Thanks for any help you can offer! 

7 thoughts:

Cindy Cates said...

I dislike scrapbooking as well. Shutterfly has been a life saver for me. You can do books, print pics, make picture gifts, etc all on the computer. I've made 11 books so far, mostly of our travels and my mom is working on a year in the family one right now. Shutterfly.com has some videos to watch. Everything is digital and the end product is beautiful! If you have any questions just let me know!!
Good Luck and have fun!
Cin ;-)

Scott & Shelby Peschel said...

i will look back for comments b/c i need help too! one thing that worked well for my baby books is I just did a shutterfly photo book and wrote a bunch in the captions... pics and milestones all in one book. but mainly i have years and years worth of printed photos in a pile ready to be sorted and put in an album one magical day.

Mrs.B said...

I'm not a fan of scrapbooking either and I'm terrible about printing pictures out too! I absolutely LOVE making photo books though! So fast, easy and adorable. I always find which sites are having a sale, so I never pay full price for one either. I've used shutterfly, snapfish and picaboo (hve to download their software, but it's great). And you can always order double of a book...great present for the grandparents!

Michelle Thompson said...

Digital Scrapbooking is the answer. I like to scrapbook and have thousands invested in supplies but just don't have the time. Got introduced to Mixbook and LOVE it. Still am not current but you can whip something up much more quickly. My goal this year is to create pages as I take pics. The backgrounds, layouts, fonts, etc FAR SURPASS those of snapfish or shutterfly. I'd suggest scanning the tickets, artwork, etc that you want to keep and put them in the book that way. Complete your book and then wait for a sale to order (I just ordered one at 50% off in January, but 30% off is pretty common).

ywilbur said...

Not much help here. My method is similar to yours. But I did make one really cool scrapbook for my first adoption, in 2005, about my family to give to my now oldest son...it had a baby pic up me and various things up to meeting him with a little bit on my mother, sister, etc.. Then I added a few tickets and such through the first month.

My younger son's is a couple of pictures I stuck in a small album without any comments. Now I just have CDs and memory cards full of pictures (except I lost my younger sons adoption ones: whaa...left memory card at Rite Aide and someone swiped it).

Good luck.

I get a free 20 dollar Shutterfly giftcard every X-mas with the Santa pictures but have never used them. They expire and end up in trash but I also think it looks great at the time (gift card is free with the package of santa pics I get).

ywilbur said...

Oh, I forgot my best tip. I have to send photos back to Russia for Kharan's adoption for 3 years. 1 year to go. So I download all the CDs onto my work computer (just got computer at home though). Then I go to print photos, select all, print as PDF (i.e., don't actually print) then burn PDFs onto CD and take to Kinkos and print on 'thick' paper but not photo paper. Usually will put 4 pics per page and make a copy ofr me where I hole punch the lot of them and PLAN someday to go add captions too them...and newspaper clippings, tickets, etc.. but haven't done that part yet.

Miles said...

I concur about the shutterfly photo books. I do one each year for each boy. I LOVE them!

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