An unexpected opportunity: how photos build relationships

It probably doesn't surprise you that over the holidays a few photos and videos came out at my house. What continues to surprise ME is what happens when they do.

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I've shared that for the past few years I've been working on a family heritage album and finished it right before Christmas. I created the album for a few reasons. First, I just felt it was important to capture the photos and memories before it was too late. Honest, but true. Second, I wanted my mom and my aunt to have this book in their hands to be able to look back and simply remember. What I didn't know, was that it would make me feel a profound sense of gratitude. Of course I'm grateful for my family, but it was the reaction of my family (calls, notes, comments), as well as the opportunity to reconnect with extended family, that really touched my heart. There is something that happens when you pull the pics, the memories and the stories all together that I can't explain. It's just plain powerful.

One late afternoon after Christmas, my mom, my sister and I were hanging out and decided to get out some old slideshows and videos that I had transferred to dvd. They were of vacations we've taken together, a birthday party, our wedding and others. I tell my clients all the time how memories can build relationships, but experiencing it is GOLD! We spent hours watching these old videos. The wine came out. The laughter. The stories. It also brought people together. It started out with just the 3 of us and before we knew it, all 14 of us were in the room. You all know I love the printed pic, but videos bring it to life, and it's amazing!

Too often we look at our photos and videos as a job or as something that costs money if we do something with them. Instead, I would challenge you to look at them as an opportunity. An opportunity to help you connect, whether it is with your children, your aging parents or your cousins that you rarely get to see.

Here are just a few ways you can connect:

  • pull those old pics of your parents, grandparents and family out of the closet and scan them.

  • Once scanned, think about how you can use them to touch some hearts (albums, photo books, slideshows, simply sharing the scans on a flashdrive with other family members). Coming soon...a new exclusive CYP album called "The Story of Us", designed to make it easy for you to tell your family's story.

  • transfer your old media (VHS tapes, film, slides) to dvd/digital. Remember that old media has a shelf life and the quality will diminish over time, so don't wait too long! Be sure to select a provider that makes sharing easy.

I look forward to hearing about your unexpected opportunities.