There are no bad pictures; that’s just how your face looks sometimes.

First. The title of the post is supposedly a quote from Abraham Lincoln. Do you think he really said that? I love it! Sounds like something my mom would say. Me: “Ugh, that’s a terrible picture of me.” Mom: “It looks just like you.” MOM. (Love you.)

Ok, so does anyone else get super stressed out by trying to figure out what to do with all their family photos?? I take like 50 a day (minimum, probably!) on my iPhone and I love the convenience of being able to snap a good quality photo or video at any moment. But when I am faced with the task of uploading, sorting, editing, and storing, I just want to take a nap. Not to mention the photos I take with my “good” camera (not many these days because you just can’t beat the convenience of your phone) and the videos from my actual video camera. Ugh. The sacrifices we make in the name of posterity. J The real thing that stresses me out about all of these images is losing them. This whole subject has been looming over me for like 3 years. Seriously. (Sad to admit, I know). Whenever I have total down time, I always think in the back of my mind, “I really should figure out what to do with all those pictures.” But then I focus my attention on something more pressing, like restitching my old softball glove (right field til 6th grade!) or dusting my car glove box.

Since I have a computer that I literally can’t use because the hard drive is out of storage because of photos/videos, I finally bit the bullet over the weekend and got down to biz. Here’s my very non-tech savvy strategy:

  • Upload all photos from devices at least once a week to my laptop. I should probably set a specific day or this isn’t going to happen.
  • Delete any obvious duds and then export the rest to a jump drive or external hard drive for long-term storage.
  • Upload same group to photo management site for additional storage/printing. I’ve been using Snapfish, but other options would be Amazon Prime, DropBox, Shutterfly, etc. Print a batch in case all your technology sources fail!
  • Upload the best ones to Mpix for printing (especially if I want larger prints to frame). Or, I send them over to Artifact Uprising for more artsy prints.
  • Clear off your devices. This is my scary step but, man, it’s liberating once it’s done.
  • Celebrate! A clear space is a clear mind. Then immediately take 50 new photos.

Someday, I will add photo editing to all this mix (sometimes I throw a few photos into PhotoShop), but I am reveling in the fact that I at least have a baseline plan, so I’m not pushing it. This is obviously not an earth-shattering or complicated method, but I just needed a documented process that I could stick to. I’ll share as I tweak!

Sleepy Dust

I must admit, I had somewhat low expectations for today because my 3-year old daughter, Maya, was BOUNCING OFF THE WALLS until 10:30 PM last night and then was up at 6:30 AM. I was tired (I was also up with my 10-month old son twice) and she was tired, so I assumed there would be some tantrums (her, not me, though I have not been the best version of myself a few times in the last wonderful and joyful, yet exhausting, 10 months). However, the day went quite smoothly. She is such a good girl, but a 3-year-old really needs more than 8 hours of overnight sleep to function at her best. Anyone else have major problems with their kids’ sleep? This girl just does not want to go to bed! No matter how tired she is, she tells herself she’s not, and will squirm, talk, sing, and run around to avoid letting herself relax enough to possibly drift off to sleep. I feel bad for her; she’s always struggled with falling asleep (but thankfully has always been pretty good at sleeping through the night), but lately it seems like she just psyches herself out every night. And if she has a nap – forget about it. She’s up until midnight. I’ve tried music, white noise, lots of books, just a few books, rocking, back patting, yoga, diffusing oils, visualization, etc. but nothing seems to be the magic solution. That said, she actually fell asleep tonight while we were reading books and the sun was still out, which happens probably four times a year. It really is a huge concern. It’s pretty amazing how well-behaved she is considering she must be over-tired pretty much all the time (poor girl!), but I’m worried about when she’s in school more regularly (she’ll start preschool two days a week in August). That good night’s sleep will become more crucial. I know there are some pharmaceutical/supplement options, but I’m really, really hesitant to go that route, so I’m constantly on the lookout for new ideas.

I’m also working on getting my son (who also has not been a good sleeper, to say the least) to nap in his crib instead of his swing. Yes, his swing. He is well below the weight limit but is obviously getting way too tall for it. However, even though he sleeps in his crib at night, the swing is his nap spot of choice. So today, I decided we’re going to have to get serious about making the transition. He took his first nap in bed with very little resistance, but fell asleep basically sitting up so it only lasted 45 minutes. His wanted no part of the crib for his afternoon nap, so I got him up after 30 minutes and put him in the swing 30 minutes later, just so he could get some sleep. He fell asleep immediately – for 20 minutes. So, long story short – he was tired tonight too. Therefore, I had two sleeping children by 7:30 PM. We’ll see how long that lasts, but this never happens! I don’t even know what to do with myself! Probably something really constructive like watch House Hunters in bed while scrolling through Facebook on my phone. But, my day started at 5 AM so I guess that’s excusable!

A Journey

First post – woohoo! Baby steps.

It’s been a difficult year. That’s probably how a lot of blogs start, huh? Therapy through writing. I guess that’s where my journey begins. I’ve thought about writing a blog for years and have even started one a half a dozen times. But ultimately, I’ve never made it a priority and honestly, I’ve never really known what to write about. I’ve idealized what the content could be based on my romanticized version of my life. Fashion! Cooking! Home renovations! But when it came down to it, I didn’t feel like I had a whole lot of anything very unique to say in those areas. So now it’s just about healing. It’s about helping me move on from a difficult point in my life and maybe providing a narrative to or from which someone else can relate or benefit along the way. It’s a way to keep me accountable, goal-oriented, and focused, and to help me organize the chaos that has overtaken my mind. It’s a way to hopefully help me get motivated toward something that will bring me long-term happiness and security. It’s a way to share what I know, love, and find helpful and inspiring.

So cheers to this hopeful journey toward self-discovery and a more simple, natural, and fulfilled life. I really don’t know where this road will take me, but thank you for joining me along the way.