I have a serious memory hoarding problem and I am all but convinced that unless a photo or video is taken I may not remember an occasion. This has led to me having 22,000 photos ON MY PHONE. This is a manageable problem now because everything is digital and I have backups, dropboxes, clouds and even straight to photo book systems in place. But my high school days, my 20’s, and my college years were all pre cell phone cameras, and so I enlisted Legacybox to help me with these memories. Back then we actually used film cameras to capture our lives and would frame photos as gifts. THANK GOD I was an active memory hoarder even then and I do have a lot of photos of those very important 15 years.
The problem with having them in a box is that a.) only I can see them (my friends/family that don’t live in LA can’t), and b.) if something happened to that box I’d be devastated. Kim Kardashian ugly cry version. I even started taking photos of some of my favorite pictures with my iPhone so that they are digitized somewhere. But, the quality is bad, they are usually distorted and blurry, and it would take days to get through a stack and get them online somewhere for safekeeping.
Well, now there is a company that will do this digitizing for you, and do a much better job than you would do yourself. Legacybox, the sponsor of the post, is an awesome company that takes your negatives, VHS family videos, photos, slides – ANY form of old memorabilia, and digitizes them so you have them all on CD’s and a flashdrive.
Here is how it works – they send you a pretty box in the mail and you fill that box with photos/videos of your loved ones that you want digitized and send it back. Four to five weeks later you get all your original photos/tapes back PLUS the CD’s and flashdrive that they now are safely copied onto. It’s simply amazing.
The service takes a lot of man hours by some lovely people, so you can’t do EVERY SINGLE photo that you’ve ever taken or it will be really expensive. I had to sort through all my photos and just send through the top 250 that really meant something to me. It was a really good exercise on editing and figuring out why a good photo is a good photo.
My own wedding wasn’t digitized because I got married in 2007, where literally a year later Facebook was launched (or maybe that year?), and then digitizing of the world quickly followed. That is why I have never blogged about my wedding (an experience you will soon get to witness, since our 10 year anniversary is approaching and it’s time to talk about what we did, why we did it, and what we would do differently now).
Also Robyn, one of my best friends since we were 10 probably hasn’t seen this picture in probably 15 years. It was when we went to New York in junior high together on a school field trip. It’s a printed out photo and one that I love because we were all dressed up to go to a Broadway play, and I had even sewn that dress. It has princess sleeves and is hot pink. Shocking.
So you put in all your photos and send them off in confidence. I’m generally a very un-paranoid person, so I wasn’t too worried about the process, but I’ve mentioned this to other people and they were a bit scared. Don’t be. It’s like being more scared to get on a plane than in a car. You have MUCH higher risk of your photos/memories being destroyed in your own house (fire, flood, toddler water gun fight) than in the mail with their insurance and tracking. Just because it’s out of your hands doesn’t mean that it’s not being taken care of. Often it’s actually the exact opposite and they understand the fear of your precious memories being lost or damaged. That’s why they’ve built safety into every step, with heavy duty crush-proof boxes, packing materials, FedEx round-trip shipping with tracking, barcoding, and much more to ensure your precious items get to them, and back to you in one piece. Plus, they have over a decade of experience digitizing treasures, and have done so for over 150,000 families across the country, creating over 1 million photo filled DVD’s. Those are some hard facts I can stand behind.
There I was, right before sending them off. I did the family sized box which can accommodate up to 10 sets of 25 photos or 10 videos/tapes. That box would typically cost you $250 but they do have options for smaller boxes, or closet sized boxes for all of you photo hoarders out there. Turn around time for the boxes is between 4-5 weeks depending on the size of the box, and you can always track the progress of it online as soon as you ship it back to them.
Three weeks later this is just a small portion of what I got back:
That footage is from a family trip we took when I was 7. SIX WEEKS IN A MOTORHOME. So amazing. None of my family has seen the whole disk before and it’s family footage GOLD. So cute.
Now that I’ve got everything digitized I can put it on FB, and if I wanted to, on the blog easily. I found three more albums from college that I’m dying to do now, so I’m going to send them to Legacybox once more so that it’s all done. Everything pre-iPhone cameras will be in a safe spot for my more frequent trips down memory lanes.
I highly encourage doing this you guys. It feels really good to finally have it done, it was totally painless, and for anyone who doesn’t have an extra 25 hours to spare, it’s actually really affordable. So get out there and go digitize your favorite memories so that you can start to enjoy them again. Legacybox has been kind enough to give 40% off the first 25 people to order using the code EMILY at check out.
**Photos of me with Legacybox by Stephanie Todaro, and a big thanks to Legacybox for sponsoring this post. Thank you for support the brands that support us, which allow us to continue to bring original content to you every day.