Monday, July 21, 2008

Preserving memories

We all have moments we wish could last forever—whether it’s a family celebration, a beautiful scenic view, or just a really good hair day! Although it’s impossible to completely capture the moment in its entirety, we can preserve pieces of it that will remind us of how wonderful the experience was to live through. And we can help ourselves to replay the memory again and again in our minds for years ahead. Here are some of my favorite ways to document the defining moments in life:

Kodak offers an online gallery to store and share personal photos, as well as create gifts to showcase your favorites. Photos can be chosen to decorate a set of mugs, compose a special album, or crop, matte and frame.

Scrapbooking is a craze for many who enjoy being creative, yet productive. Women (and I'm sure some rare men) can spend hours poured over scissors, papers, stickers and souvenirs, personalizing pages to showcase their memories and document the big events in their lives.Over the last few years, specialty scrapbooking stores have popped up everywhere and accessories can be found at almost any major store--from Target to even the grocery store! And although you can buy some great scrapbook- specific things, I tend to think personalized cards, postcards from trips, pretty museum admission ticket stubs, favorite ribbon or unique beads, free hand sketches etc. make the best scrapbook adornments. Use these sorts of little personal touches to avoid creating a “cookie cutter” scrapbook.

Amanda Blu scrapbook albums available at; $13.99

Additional scrapbook accessories such as the travel paper book and labels also available at Joann's.

Search online for a local scrapbooking group or class to help inspire and encourage you to take time to create works of art with your memories. Visit Joann Fabrics, Michaels or Hobby Lobby for all kinds of embellishments to adorn your scrapbook.
For years I've kept journals to document the different stages in my life: hopes, goals, frustrations, amazing experiences...Each time I randomly select one and flip through the pages, the memories come back to me so vividly that I really feel as I'm re-living the experience all over again. I can reflect on how my thoughts and perspectives have changed, friendships have evolved or faded away, and certain events have impacted me forever. I admit, sometimes I've read through things, torn out pages and thrown them away just to ensure no one ever gets their hands on it--but most of the words on those pages are invaluable for me when I feel like I want to reminisce.

As Oscar Wilde once said, "I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train."

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