Saturday, June 5, 2010

Wading Along a Flooded Memory Lane

I'm supposed to be getting ready for our trip.  There are a lot of things to think about when you prepare to leave the country for three weeks.  Wardrobes and shoes need to be appraised, bills need to be scheduled for payment, camera and video memory sticks need to be purchased, airline guidelines need to be reviewed so we don't arrive at the airport and learn we have too many, too heavy bags.

But, I'm a procrastinator.

I do a little something each day, so I can hold my head high in the evening when hubby asks what I accomplished.  Yesterday though, when the kids wanted to spend time with me doing "something NOT boring," I decided to embark on  a project that's been long overdue -- and admittedly one I don't have time for right now.

For the fourteen years hubby and I have been married, we've taken photographs to archive our lives together.  Everyone does, right?  Our problem is we've always printed out the photos from film (until two years ago when we scored our first digital camera), enjoyed flipping through the pictures for a week or so, and then tossed the envelop into a royal blue footlocker that once served as a coffee table when we were newly weds, and now occupies a stretch of wall in my writing studio.  It barely closes.

The kids and I started in Target, where we optimistically purchased two photo binders holding a total of 600 pictures.  By late afternoon, it was clear to us that we'd need to make a return trip.

We looked through hundreds and hundreds of pictures, laughing at forgotten memories, oohing and ahhing over the glossy images of the kids' baby years, telling and retelling the stories of our lives.

Each photo is one significant moment in time.  Oh, the stories.

The pic at the top of this post was taken one month after Sidney was born.  She's snuggled in the carrier strapped to my chest.  Cody was a month shy of two years old.  We spent that day roaming the ruins of the chateau, dating from the 10th century, of Foix, which is a wonderful little city in the department of Ariège.  At the time, we lived outside Toulouse, and Foix was just a forty-five minute drive away.  It is considered the gateway to the beautiful Pyrenées Mountains, the natural southern border between France and Spain.  (Learn more about Foix HERE.)

This is a beautiful photo of Foix (thanks, Source).  In the photo of us, above, we were making our way down the cobblestoned path from the chateau to the city below.

Now that we have a digital camera, we're terrible about printing out pictures.  But once I have all these memories stored in their binders, I'm turning my sights on the memory sticks and computer hard drive.  Call me old-fashioned, but I like to hold books of photos in my hands, in a comfy chair looking out a sunny window, with a cup of fresh brewed coffee.  Memory lane loses some of its charm when I'm staring at a computer screen.

What about you?  Do you print photos or prefer storing them online?  Glass protected paper photo or digital frame?  Paper of plastic?