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Picture Dump


Remember these?

I’m determined to get this pesky project done that has been living on my to do lists for years.  Sort pictures.  Just typing that puts me to sleep.  I don’t want to do it.  BUT what is even more irritating is looking at the boxes of pictures, the envelopes of pictures, the piles of pictures that need to be sorted.  I abhor clutter and piles.  I keep trying to “organize” how the boxes, envelopes and piles “look”.  Maybe a bigger storage bin with label maker tape?  Or matching photo boxes with labels “For Album” will make this better.  My second son was born in 2007 and somewhere through that pregnancy all ordering of photos ceased.  My oldest son has many photo albums to see how he has grown etc… until 2007.  My youngest son….nothing.  I’m doing this for them and for the sake of my to do list.  And for gosh sake if you have any printed pictures of me and our family do not send them!  At least not yet.

I have consulted many as to the best way to do this.  What I’m looking for is fast.  Ain’t nobody got time for scrapbooking.  So here’s how this is going down.

Imagine an auctioneer reading the rest.  We might as well start now being fast.  (Heminaheminahemina)

Put all the pictures that need to be sorted in one place.

Get boxes that you can use to sort the pictures by year–these will only be used temporarily.

Label each box by year–in my case I had boxes from 2005 through 2013.

Label additional box(es) “Friends” or “Extended Family” depending on your needs but keep it to one or two boxes.  If we over categorize we will go crazy and this will not get done.

Now what I do is have a marked time on the calendar every Tuesday, for example, from 9-11:00 am.  I call my girlfriend, who is doing the same project, the phone is on speaker, the Today show is on, and the coffee mug is full.

Nesting Spot for Picture Dump

Nesting Spot for Picture Dump

I pick up a stack of pictures and start dumping them by year.  Don’t know the year?  Guess.  Better than the mess you’ve got now.

When time’s up I clean up and do this again the following week.


Clean Up

Make sure the boxes stay labelled by year.  Stack it up and stash it out of sight until your next appt slot on the calendar.  Gretchen Rubin from “The Happiness Project” talks about how unfinished projects make her UNhappy so she picks one and works on it for 15 minutes every morning until it is done.  Just pick a time and stick to it.

Pick up the pictures and dump them one by one.

When you get them all sorted by year—and I’m not here yet—but when you do THEN figure out how you want to keep them.  I have already decided that I am going to make albums by year–thrown in willy nilly but contained by year.  The pictures that don’t make the album are either getting tossed (if they are bad) or I’m going to store them in picture boxes labelled by year.  If I get crazy maybe the pictures will get further sorted by month–but that’s a long shot.  I’ve had no time to deal with this for 6+ years–I don’t want to get so complicated that I can’t complete it and it remains unfinished forever.

In the future, once I get this organized, I’m going to keep a standing photo box labelled by year with dividers in it by month.  If the picture makes it to the printer then it immediately will get “filed” in the box.  Then there is a method.  Later if I want to do something with them, great, but if not at least it is orderly.  And most importantly, my sons, later on, will be able to ask me what they looked like when they were 6 and 8 and I can say look in the photo box labelled 2013–September.


Thanks Steph and Renee:)

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