As anyone who knows me or has read my blog at all, you can tell I am all about memory making. That's pretty much 90% of why this blog exists - to keep a written (and pictoral) record of our family's activities.
In a way, it has solved some of my angst about not keeping up with scrapbooking. I figure I have this blog, I'll eventually print it out, and that will work out okay. But, there are a couple of problems with that, 1: I'm missing about 3 years from where my last scrapbook ends and where the blog begins, and 2: I'm not so sure that my kids will want to wade through all of my writing when they want to find pictures of themselves, as well as, believe it or not - not all of my pictures end up getting posted.
I'd resigned to the idea that someday, when the kids are both in school and I have NOTHING to do with my long days of solititude (hee hee) - I'll pull out the cabinet of scrapbooking materials, as well as two additional bins and get to work catching up. This idea doesn't hold a ton of appeal to me, mostly because of the bulk of stuff and mess it creates. It's just such a process! Not to mention that it requires that I print out all of my pictures stored digitally and label them first.
Then, last Thursday, I attended a coffee get-together with some friends that I knew and some people I didn't know. One gal was there that I graduated from high school with (Heather, remember Stephanie Putnam, class of '89?) She has a new last name and a brand new passion that she was willing to share her limited knowledge of - that being "Heritage Makers".
"Heritage Makers" is a company that offers online scrapbooking. It's been around for a year and a half and apparently is head and shoulders above its competitors in terms of offerings and ease of use. Basically, you export your pictures to that website, use any of the embillishments they offer (which are a ton) - including: borders, quotes, "stickers", etc.... and then pay the money to have it put into a hardbound book - just like a children's book you'd buy in Borders. The end product is so beautiful and professional, it makes you dream big in terms of the "library" you can offer your children. Also, you can scan your old "Creative Memories" albums, upload the pages - and turn those into books too. That will solve my future dilemma as to how to give both of my kids their "family albums" to have for themselves.
If this sounds like some sort of sales pitch, it's not meant to. In fact, poor Stephanie was having a hard time keeping up with everyone's questions and requests when she only meant to have the stuff available for Lisa (the hostess) to show to those people that had previously asked about it. (Plus, she had just discovered the site herself only about a week prior). I think there are a lot of people out there, like myself, who struggle in this new "digital age" as to how to best preserve those memories. For me, the idea of just sitting at my laptop, "scrapbooking" is pretty cool. Apparently, Oprah thinks so too - word has it that she's listing "Heritage Makers" among her "favorite things" in her upcoming fall magazine. That kind of endorsement makes me feel better about diving in.....
So, the website is www.heritagemakers.com. You can upload and design your pages for free, however, if you want to have more options, or get super serious about it, there are rates per month to pay - or you can go the route I did and just pay an annual amount to get the privleges and perks of being a consultant (which simply provides me some free stuff and eliminates having to go through another person if I choose to order products). To be honest, I've done VERY LITTLE investigating of the webiste myself. I managed to upload some pictures yesterday - which is a great start - maybe when we get away for Labor Day weekend in Portland, I can start making some bigger strides. I also don't know if you need to have a consultant number to log on or look around the site - mine is 257511, in the event that it requires a number to put in.
No sales pitch here, ladies - just a cool find I thought I'd share with you, that seemed all the more of a fun discovery as the days of rain settled in over the weekend. This winter may find me working away on my laptop, with my "glo-lamp" at my side, doing my best to savor the memories of "funner days" and dreaming of ways to create more.