Bringing Family Stories to Life

Family history sometimes gets a bad rap.  It can be viewed as one of those hobbies people pick up when they’re old and don’t have anything else to do.  This reputation is unfortunate because the fact is that we all need our history.  We all need our stories, and we all need our family stories.  Stories connect us, give us strength, and help us realize our place not only in the world but in OUR little world of influence.  What would change if you wrote down your own story?  What would you learn if you wrote down your family’s story?

The Importance of Creativity to Personal Growth

Whether or not you think you’re creative, you are.  (If you’ve ever said, “I’m not creative,” today’s #familyhistoryfriday post is one you especially need to read.)  Creativity is not just important to personal growth– it’s important to life.  We touched on creativity last week in The Importance of Hobbies to Personal Growth, so let’s dive in a little deeper.  Why is creativity so important?  How are “non-creative” people creative?  Understanding what creativity really is and what it really looks like is the first step to using creativity for personal growth, satisfaction, and happiness.

The Importance of Hobbies to Personal Growth

In today’s culture of busy-ness, it can be easy to think of hobbies as an extravagance or an indulgence.  However, hobbies are an important part of personal growth.  Learning a new skill, developing a talent you already have, and doing something simply for the pleasure of it benefits your brain, heart, and attitude.  Hobbies are good for your overall well-being.  If you’re not sure what this has to do with #familyhistoryfriday, keep reading!

Personal Growth through Memory-Keeping

I think memory-keeping is magic.  Memory-keeping (or preserving photos and memories in a tangible way) is great for you, great for kids, and great for families.  How many ways are there to spend your time?  How many of those ways help kids and families while at the same time allow you personal growth and even therapeutic effects?  As we take a good look at personal growth during this month’s #familyhistoryfriday articles, you will learn surprising reasons why memory-keeping is at the top of my personal growth to-do list.  And, of course, I’ll help you get starting DOING IT with simple and straightforward solutions.

Your Loved One’s Story: Part of Your Family History

Learning, collecting, and then recording your family’s history can seem like a daunting task unless it’s broken down into parts.  It’s much more than time spent on ancestor websites or recording information off headstones, though.  This month on #familyhistoryfriday we have looked at many aspects of a family history:  family stories, your own life story, “our” stories (such as love stories), and more.  These are “bites” of family history, and they all matter!

You are the person best-equipped to tell your own story, so starting there is perfect.  Who do you know and love who might need a little help or encouragement to record his or her story?  It only takes a couple of generations before someone’s life story is lost to the world.  My grandparents died before my children were born, so it falls to me to make sure my children know about my grandparents.  I can leave a legacy for my children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren in the form of a written story!  Today we will look at a few ideas to help you tell the story of a loved one.

Telling Our Story: another important part of family history

The best way to begin recording family history is to start with what you know.  You are most familiar with your own life, your own story.  Once you have recorded your own history (which we talked about last week), think of the “our” stories you know.  Maybe it’s your own love story.  Maybe it’s the life stories of your parents, or the story of how your grandparents came to this country.  What couple or family stories do you know?  If you don’t know any, who is your resource for learning them?  Let’s look at different possibilities for “our story” as part of your greater family history.  See which idea resonates most with you on #familyhistoryfriday this week.

Why Every Human Heart Needs His or Her Family History

Today you’re going to find out that family history is for you.  You will learn that family history is much more than you thought, and you will get a taste of the power it can bring into your life.  Not everyone knows their own family stories, and not everyone loves the stories they know.  So today on #familyhistoryfriday we are going to look at why each human heart desperately needs his or her own family history.  If you don’t believe me, keep reading!

How to Print Your Pictures From Your Phone

It’s estimated that we take 1.2 trillion pictures a year, and 85% of them are taken on smartphones!  We all know that taking a picture is really easy, but what about getting that digital image into a form where it can be seen more readily?  As you know from previous #familyhistoryfriday articles, accumulating a stockpile of photos isn’t really the goal.  Having gigabytes upon gigabytes of photos that remain untouched and unappreciated don’t do the heart and soul good– seeing those photos does.  The whole point of taking a picture is to see it, not to store it.  We’ve all mastered Step 1: how to take a digital picture.  Now let’s conquer Step 2: how to print those pictures from our phones.

How to Organize Both Printed and Digital Photos

As we talk about photos this month on Evolve’s #familyhistoryfriday, it’s important to talk specifically about how to organize both printed and digital photos.  Organizing printed (physical) photos requires a good strategy, but digital photos are a whole new animal.  We just didn’t take thousands upon thousands of photos back when we used film.  In fact, you’ll sometimes see me mention people I meet who have a terabyte (or more) worth of digital photos on their computers.  A terabyte can hold 2,000,000 photos.  Two million.  So organizing digital photos really is imperative simply because we have so many of them!  Let me help with some steps on HOW to organize your photos.

How to Get Your Pictures off Your Phone

Pictures are the focus of this month’s #familyhistoryfriday, and today we’ll look at one of the most basic photo obstacles:  getting them off your phone.  In the last 10 years or so, photos taken on a phone have come a long way.  Back then, the grainy image was not really worth a second glance, but today I can take better quality photos with my phone than I could on the first digital camera I owned!  With increasing memory capabilities on phones and better quality, the phone is a common way to take photos these days.  And because phones are in our pockets, it’s easy to take a lot of photos with them.  But now what?