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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Family Historian...

You may know that I love being a mom (well, most of the time).  And I even enjoy most of the work that goes along with it.  I like making plans, arranging playdates, picking out clothes, and taking pictures of the happy fruits of my labor.  In fact, just like most moms, I document everything with my camera(s) trying to capture every moment so I won't forget even the minutia.  So, I have appointed myself to this job of FAMILY HISTORIAN.

There are some perks to the job.  I am in control of the camera and I know that I won't miss any important moments.  I am constantly working to improve my photography skills and my 2 adorable muses make that job easy.  I am not in many of the pictures which is both good and bad, however, at least I can make sure I look relatively beautiful (ha!) in all those photos released to the press (aka family and friends).

But there are 2 major drawbacks.

1.  I worry (because I worry about everything) that I spend too much time "behind the lens".  Am I too focused on documenting the moment that I miss "living in the moment?"  I think this plagues many moms with constant access to technology.  I don't question if I should record something but how.  Should I do video or snapshots?  Iphone, flip or HD movie camera?  Small digital camera or SLR? Ahh...the perils of the digital world.

2.  And this is the big one...I LOVE taking the pictures.  I HATE figuring out what to do with them.  Here's my most current itemized list of what needs to be done with may begin to see why this is the most stressful part of my mommy job.

  1. Take the pictures.  Good, done.  Got that one covered.
  2. Upload pictures to my computer.
  3. Go through said pictures eliminating blurry photos, editing and cropping others.
  4. Add photo titles to attempt to make some sense of the place and time and get rid of the IMG_8798920 in every picture.
  5. Organize on the computer into albums.
  6. Upload to photo website so I can actually attempt to get the photos at some point.
  7. Edit albums so my friends and family don't complain that I sent 100 of the same pictures of my kids tushies.
  8. Share albums.
  9. Consider cherry picking the BEST images for facebook and post (sometimes I may skip this step), email individual photos to grandparents, other moms, husband, self so photos will be on their computer, phone or ipad if needed.
  10. Add the album to the other 10+ albums in my inbox that I need to do something about.
  11. Keep albums in the inbox until they reach critical mass and I start losing sleep at night about not documenting my kid's childhoods and worrying that they will have no pictures for their wedding videos.
  12. Wake up in the middle of one of those nights and order ALL pictures from ALL albums (because that is easier) and figure out how to find a coupon to pay for my order of almost 800 pictures.
  13. Pray the order doesn't come soon because I still haven't put the last 800 pictures in albums.
  14. Receive pictures.  Stash in basement.  Lose sleep again.  Stress about albums.  Buy more albums because I don't have enough space.  Continue to stress about putting pictures in albums.....

...It never stops.  Eventually I will put them away.  I know it.  But there has to be a better way.

I am faced with so many options now that I am ready to throw in the towel.  Please help.  Send me your stories.  Tell me your system.  Am I the only one who is tormented by this?  There must be a support group for me....


David Soberman said...

that pretty much sums it up

Lauren G said...

the last few steps need to be cut out in favor of creating albums through either Mac's iPhoto or Kodak Gallery or some such place.

Uncle Chuck said...

You left out one more step...backup. I'm now trying to create two backups of all files. I use the 3-2-1 method. 3 copies of all files. 2 different technologies (i.e., hard drive & DVD's or "cloud" backup. 1 offsite. If your computer was stolen, would you lose everything? If your home office had a fire, and your computer and external hard drive burned up, would you have an offsite backup? Arrrrghhhh! Too much to think about? But consider the alternative...losing all your family photo albums.

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