Nicole: Preserving Family Memories

"I really enjoy documenting experiences with people in the photos rather than scenic photos. Those pictures capture the full experience for me and I’m able to go right back to that time. "

- Nicole


"I found PrestoPhoto through a friend and continue to use Presto because the prices fit perfectly into our budget and the customer service is always top notch!"

Creating Your Yearly Memory Book

Our customer Nicole Davis has quite a bit of experience -and tips- for creating yearly memory books! Read on to find some inspiration.

At a young age, I started helping my mom scrapbook. She was diligent in keeping an individual scrapbook of pictures and personal keepsakes for each of her four children, and by the time I was in 6th grade, she allowed me to completely take over and create my book. Talk about a daunting task! Every few months my mom would bring out the patterned paper, stickers, scissors, and glue, and we would sit together to chronologically organize important school papers and pictures. Although it takes dedication and hard work, it really began my love of journaling and preserving my personal history through pictures -- though I didn’t really see it as that at the time. These were just great memories that I wanted to preserve!

As a high school graduation gift I received my very first laptop to take to college. At first, I didn’t realize how my love for physical scrapbooking could translate into digital but after hearing about digital scrapbooking I knew I had to try it. If it didn’t work out, I could still stick with my patterned paper, stickers, scissors, and glue! My first digital memory book documented my freshman year of college and I was hooked from then. From that first digital scrapbook of Freshman year, I’ve created digital scrapbooks documenting my college experience, wedding, and now my own family. It not only takes up less space in my home, but I can still have my scrapbooks printed and beautifully bound. Instead of using scissors, I can digitally cut and paste my photos and patterns. It’s a lot less messy!

Since I’ve been making scrapbooks for so many years I’ve developed some tips that I often tell others when they ask me how I manage it. I also received tips from my mom, who so diligently documented my childhood.

  1. I really enjoy documenting experiences with people in the photos rather than scenic photos. Those pictures capture the full experience for me and I’m able to go right back to that time. If we can’t find someone to take our photo then we get creative by using the self timer feature to get everyone in the shot.
  2. I often ask family or friends to send me the photos they get from an outing together so I can add them into my book.
  3. The most important aspect of digital scrapbooking for me is to keep those photos I receive organized. I put them in chronological order for easy access.
  4. Don’t keep every photo that you take! It can be overwhelming and discouraging to try to wade through thousands of photos. I will flag favorites and delete the rest off the computer. It makes it easier to stay organized and to find specific pictures.
  5. I upload my photos at the end each month and then start to create my layouts. Staying on top of the process and doing a little at a time definitely helps me stay on the ball and not give up! Having a show or movie in the background also helps me pass the time while I’m working on the spreads. Plus, since life is so busy it helps me not fall too far behind on my favorite shows!
  6. I work on my layouts in Photoshop Elements, but there are many other great programs for creating digital scrapbooks. I love having the ability to resize photos, change fonts, and modify each page as I go. Usually, my books end up around 80-120 pages and I choose the 8.5x11 Hardcover option when printing with PrestoPhoto.

My main motivation for digital scrapbooks is my love of life. Some of my favorite moments include being able to look back at my biggest milestones and share those with my family. I have incredible parents, married into an amazing family, and have a wonderful husband, and beautiful son. I have enjoyed many wonderful moments, and I have so many more to come -- I want to be able to share both. Even when life feels hard, I want to remember what I’ve learned. Hopefully, my mistakes will help my family in the future!

I found PrestoPhoto through a friend and continue to use Presto because the prices fit perfectly into our budget and the customer service is always top notch! I work in my community as an autism consultant, so sometimes I’m short on time and the support from Presto is invaluable. Plus, I’m always happy with how my memory books turn out! Great products, great price and great service. It just works with Presto.

Have you ever created a yearly memory book? Let us know what tips you have in the comments!