Former procrastinators, maybe you’ve done this yourself, (Please tell me!) but my “experience” comes from watching movies. You’ve seen guys suited up to parachute from an airplane, each jumping when it’s his turn. Then somebody balks. That’s when somebody else pushes him out the open door and he is forced into what he feared. I just got pushed out of the plane.
When we recently cleared overflow office materials out of the workroom, I was compelled/inspired to tackle the eight boxes of photos I brought home from my parents’ house when we cleaned it out four years ago. Yep, four.
I wasn’t sad; I was scared – overwhelmed by the prospect of figuring out what to do with the pictures and doing it. But last week I jumped. It was “Go there!”
First, I asked the Lord to show me what to aim for and how to organize a process for handling. Goals: 1) Reclaim space 2) Make one album each for my two brothers and myself. That limits the number of pictures I can keep.
I made a file, dividing it into sections according to what I’d begun to find: Before Marriage, Immediate Family, Friends, Extended Family, Family History, etc. I also made a small “Look at and Toss” portion for pictures not making the album cut but fun to share briefly.
I handled only a chunk of photos at a time to keep it manageable. I discarded everything possible, then filed remaining pictures for easier handling later. I’m not able to make the albums at this time. However, paring the eight boxes down to one file and one stack of oversized items gives us 1) much clear space in the workroom now (Hallelujah!) and 2) sets me up for making the albums when I can prioritize them.
When one box was empty, I was driven to the next. I’ve had a laughing good time with memories and progress. I’m learning “elimination criteria” – and hitting some snags.
Eliminating excess is critical. I am committed to just 3 albums. If a picture is the only record of something important, I’ll keep it. Otherwise, I’m learning to discard unnecessary duplicates, pictures that are blurry, have unknown people or people that are too far away, are not good memories, are nearly the same as another (pick one).
Of course there are many very old pictures in this collection. In addition to the above criteria I have found many photos too tiny to keep or I cannot remove the heavy backing.
Any album-making ladies out there? Do you know how to flatten pictures that have curled – without cracking them? Do you have suggestions on how to find elderly relatives whose names I don’t know who might want beautiful pictures that belong in their part of the family?
What photo or other project do you hesitate to jump into? Go! Ask the Lord to show you what your goal should be and how to take the first steps.