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3 Ways to Preserve Photos and Memories (other than scrapbooks)

After my son was born, I realized I needed to come up with some other ways to preserve memories besides just scrapbooks. I love to scrapbook, but we have tons of photos of our little boy and life is busy, so I try to only scrapbook the most precious photos and significant events.

Thanks to Pinterest and flash deal sites like Groupon, there are 3 other ways I preserve memories, besides traditional scrapbooks.

  1. A Perpetual Calendar for everyday memories
  2. Mini Books to keep mementos
  3. Photo Books for big events (such as vacations, Christmas and birthdays)

Disclosure: This page includes affiliate links.

#1 Perpetual Calendar
I saw this idea from Design Sponge. Each index card represents a day of the year and the vintage postcards act as a divider between each month. Each day you document one memory. After several years you will have a bunch of memories, recorded day by day.

We keep it out on the kitchen table, to remind us to fill it out each day.

I picked up the vintage postcards at a shop in Paris, Kentucky on Main Street. There are some great little shops there and it is worth a visit if you like small towns and antiquing. The postcards were about $0.10 each and I tried to chose ones that had significance (like this one of Venice, which Mike & I visited for our “Baby-Moon” in 2010.)

I tried reusing an actual berry basket that I got at the Farmers Market but it was nasty and gross and couldn’t be cleaned. I wasn’t sure how well it would hold up anyway.

I had my eye on a gorgeous little ceramic berry basket from Anthropologie but felt it was a little steep at $20 (speaking of Anthropologie, the Anthro Love series starts next Week!). But then I happened upon Sur La Table which offers similar baskets for less than half the price – I even got mine on sale!

This project is pretty straightforward, but I did have to make some tweaks to fit the basket. My index cards and post cards were both a little wide and needed trimming. Not such a quick task when you are talking about 365 index cards.

Postcards – $1.20, thrifted
Berry Basket – approx $6, Sur La Table
Index Cards – approx $4, 4 sets of 100 ($1 each)
TOTAL = less than $12

#2 Mini Books
I also got the idea for making the Mini Books from Close 2 My Art. This is a brilliant, compact, method for saving random mementos. I’ve been using them to keep special greeting cards, such as those from my baby showers, the birth of my son and photo cards at Christmas.

I bought this pack of book rings and keep them handy for when I want to put together a quick book.

In this Christmas Mini-Book, I am keeping the photo cards we receive each year. I am using our yearly Family Greeting Card to separate the photos in this book by 2011, 2012… etc.

For my baby showers, I designed a cute cover from scrapbook supplies and adhered it to chipboard for a front cover. Inside the Mini-Book are each of the invitations and any special mementos from the baby showers.

#3 Photo Books
I use Photo Books for multi-day events, like our road trip to Memphis & New Orleans, that have a lot of photos. If I were to try to scrapbook that trip, there would probably be enough photos to put together an entire album. So instead I upload them to a photo site and create a book.

We did invest in 12 books for my son’s 1st year to capture how much he changed each month. I plan to do the same for future kiddos.

We buy all of these books with Groupons, Living Social Deals and other flash deals. There is no need to pay full price for a photo book because these deals pop up rather frequently.

The Photo Books require a little more time and effort, compared to the Mini-Books and the Perpetual Calendar, but still a tiny amount of time in comparison to a scrapbook. And they give me the peace-of-mind to just enjoy putting together my scrapbooks, without worrying that I’m leaving out precious memories.

What other ways do you save your memories?

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Craftivity Designs

Tuesday 18th of March 2014

It's a really neat way to "journal" without requiring a lot of time -- but you still end up with tons of memories recorded.


Wednesday 12th of March 2014

I love the perpetual calender idea! My favorite thing is randomly finding sweet cards or memorabilia that I have stored away and reminiscing. It would be so fun to read through old memories!

Craftivity Designs

Thursday 28th of February 2013

Thanks, we are especially enjoying recording all of his cute words right now, since he is really starting to talk a lot! Thanks for stopping by :)