My Photo Albums

If you’ve ever read my blog before then you probably know that I love taking photos. I’m not an amazing photographer or anything and probably never will be, but I love taking photos. I love capturing the moment and the memories that are contained within photographs. I love that in that frame, a moment of truth and reality is stilled and can be kept photo albums

My dad always used to take a lot of photos and while endlessly posing for the camera did my head in as a kid, I always adored looking through our family photo albums. Oh and we had hundreds. I mean literally, hundreds. Every photo my dad took would go into an album. We would have 7 or 8 films (with 36 exposures of course) for one 2 week family holiday and it all went into albums.

Since things have gone digital of course none of us think anything of snapping away, taking hundreds of photos in the blink of an eye without really thinking about it. But what do you do with all those photos? Do you share them on social media or on a blog? Do you go through the pictures you take and label each with a title so you can find them easily? Are they backed up online with thousands of photos with random file names making it almost impossible to find a specific picture ever again?

Because physical photo albums were always so filled with happiness for me as a kid, I have tried to carry that tradition on a bit. Not quite to the extent that my parents did, mind you. Instead of multiple albums per year I am trying to limit the amount of albums. Squeezing 1-2 years into one album to try to keep the amount of physical albums manageable. So, how do I do it? How do I get down from the thousands of photographs that I take every year (and I do mean thousands, I recently found a folder on the computer with 10,000 photos taken in the last 6 months) into a manageable amount that be squeezed into half a photo album?

Well, it takes some organisation.

We have online storage (currently one drive though we have used Google drive and Livedrive in the past) and every photo we take on our phones are automatically uploaded via WiFi, then downloaded onto our home computer and laptop. I then try to routinely organise the folders from my camera roll into other folders. It is easier if I do this frequently, I have left it months before and it is a daunting task at that point! I tend to create a folder per year and then have sub-folders within for events such as days out, birthday celebrations, even a nice walk where I took a lot of photos.2016-09-22 (2)

In the past I have just moved every photo from a specific event into a folder “to be sorted at a later date” but this year I am really trying to only move in the best pictures that are really worth keeping and then deleting the rest as, seriously, there are so many photos! I also have a subfolder specifically for photos of Monkey and LM. I am often snapping them painting or playing etc and I love to keep some of those pictures of them too even though they don’t fit in to a specific event category.

Then, every 6 months or I so, I look back through the folders and copy my absolute favourites into another folder, in preparation for making an actual photo album. I do this in a couple of goes, going through them again to weed out ones that are too similar and keeping the best, or funniest, or ones with a story to them, and making sure I have shots with family members and friends included too.2017-01-28 (3)

The actual albums I prefer are the ones with big self adhesive pages. I’ve never been a fan of slip in albums as all the photos have to be the same way round, and there isn’t any freedom in terms of getting lots of photos into an album. With slip in albums you can fit so many photos of a particular size into the album, and that’s it. With self adhesive albums there is more freedom.

I’ve always loved a nice collage. Even back in my uni days when I would get my films printed out, I would cut up my photos and do each page of an album as a college. I like to think my collages now are a little more sophisticated but the idea is the same. Getting as many pictures onto one page of an album, as possible. I’ve tried a few ways of doing this over the years, but I think I’ve found the nicest way to do it. I create collages using pic monkey (always a blogger’s friend) and have the collages printed out. I have a big collage with about 14 photos printed onto a 10×8 print, and small collages of 2-3 photos onto 6×4 prints and can just squeeze one big print and 2 small prints onto each page, with a bit of trimming taken into consideration.2016-09-22 (4)

I know this is a lot of pictures on each page, and for some it would be too crammed… But I love it. I love being able to see lots of shots per page and for me having more pictures per page means fewer albums in total, taking up less space, which is important to me. I then use some little coloured sticky tabs to add notes to the pages, just to give a rough indication of dates, locations, and at the moment, the kids approximate ages. I love being able to look at a page and immediately see, right that was June 2016, Monkey was just 4 and LM was 20 mths old.20170221_141332

It takes a lot of time and effort to do all this, but for me it is so worth it. Do you organise your photos? How do you do them? Do you have physical albums? Or digital ones? Or you scrapbook? I’d love to hear how you do it. For me, I am have started the task of organising photos from July-December to last year and am enjoying the process of creating my next photo album, so my word of the week, is, albums.

Me and Mine March 2016

I really enjoy joining in with me and mine every month primarily because this community really encourages me to get nice shots of us as a family. Getting photos of the four of us can be so tricky as let’s face it kids aren’t always cooperative and having enough arms to take photos while keeping the kids happy isn’t easy.

That said I do feel my photos of our little family aren’t as polished as many other bloggers. We don’t have a tripod to take a photo from a distance and most are done using a selfie stick and taking a frame from a video (which we find generally leads to more likelihood of catching fleeting smiles) or on the front facing camera, neither of which are the highest quality. Add to that that LM is such a wriggly independent thing who does not enjoy being held in position and, well, you don’t get the best photos. Still, at least we have shots of the four of us that will show how much we’ve all grown and changed and that really is the purpose.

This month I have a couple of less than brilliant outdoors shots. My fave family shots are those that are taken outside enjoying the sunshine, and I really hoped for shots like that this month, but those are the hardest for keeping the kids happy and still. So we have this one, which didn’t go quite as well as I had hoped.20160312130553

This one with loads of my family in it actually turned out surprisingly well and is one of my current fave photos though not just a shot of the four of us!20160325154915

On the same day out we also got this shot of the 4 of us which is OK but was so sunny and neither kiddy enjoyed the sun in their face.20160325_145907

My fave shots of us as a family this month though are some completely impromptu, appalling quality selfies. The kids had been climbing all over me on the sofa with a bean bag for some reason, and I just got the camera out which resulted in some fab photos of all of us having a lot of fun.20160307182010 20160307182251 20160307182321 20160307181627

So they aren’t polished, they certainly aren’t very high quality and they aren’t in a particularly special location. I’ve cut hubs’ head off in one and LM is a blur in another. But I love them because we are happy and in that they reflect us as a family the most out of all of these pictures. Larking around and having fun.

The Me and Mine Project
And then the fun began...

A Family Photoshoot

For Christmas my brother and sister in law bought us a really lovely present – a voucher for a portrait shoot with our wedding Photographer, Chris Boland of Distant Cloud Photography. Hubs used to work with Chris many years ago and knew he was starting out as a photographer so it made sense to contact him for our wedding and we absolutely adored the photographs he took of our big day. We had a shoot with him when Monkey was tiny and so were very excited to have another photo shoot with him now we are a family of four.

We always thought we would aim for the shoot to be in the summer but we didn’t plan on it being this late in the summer. We had to cancel the first date we planned due to all of the illness we have had this year, and we finally rebooked it recently. We nearly had to cancel again the day before when I bashed my face on the car – hitting myself right on the bridge of my nose and giving myself a minor black eye!! Blimmin typical on the day before a photoshoot but thankfully make-up managed to cover it and we kept the booking.

We went to our local country park and thankfully it was a lovely day, nice and sunny but not too too hot. I will be honest though, it really was hard work, Monkey was running riot or not wanting to smile or take off his sunglasses. Times when LM jus wanted to walk or was just fed up of being held in place so got really wriggly. I took a few outtake shots of the “behind the scenes” at the photoshoot.. oh the chaos.


But, thankfully Chris is brilliant and managed to get so many amazing shots of us all so it was very very very much worth it. I have popped a few below  (Seriously I don’t know how he does it, I do not look this nice normally!)

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We are planning a photo wall with some of the shots and I can’t wait to put them up as they are just lovely. Really nice to get such great shots of the kids and some nice ones of us with them.

Have you had family photo shoots? Have you found them hard work too?

theordinarymomentsbadgeMama and MoreAnd then the fun began...

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My word of the week this week, is picturesque, as we have been in a very picturesque part of the country. We have been housesitting for a friend in Dorset in a very picturesque little cottage.


It has been such a lovely week, and we have seen some beautiful places and had lots of fun. It’s a semi-holiday as Hubs has been working from here but we have been able to spend a lot of lovely time together as a family. Plus there is something about being right out in the countryside that can’t help but make you feel at peace…. although the cockerel crowing at 5am every day is slightly less peaceful!

I have never been to this part of the country before and have very much enjoyed exploring it. Back to normal for next week so will write more about what we have been up to on another day. But for now, the internet connection is not great for uploading pictures so here are just 1 or 2 of the gorgeous places we have been.




The Reading ResidenceCountry Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwalltheordinarymomentsbadge