Express | Tee: Gap (Soft Plum) | Jeans: Express | Sandals: Amazon (Taupe) | Bag: c/o Amazon | Necklace: Kendra Scott
Hm, I just realized the exact color name of my Jacket, Shoes, and Bag are all Taupe! So much for not being matchy-matchy! Oh well, they aren't all the exact same shade of taupe so it worked for me. And for at least 80% of the day I wasn't walking around with my bag in hand. Anyway...
If this tee isn't on sale for 40% off today, wait 2-3 days and I'm sure it will be. I've been having good luck with a few pieces at the Gap lately so I've been watching their promotions more closely, and let's just say they have 40% sales way more often than Express! (Not complaining though!) At any rate, this tee runs true to size and I went for an XS because I wanted it to be fairly fitted as an under-layer. I like the curved hem since it means I can easily leave it untucked. I've only worn this once so I can't report on how it holds up in the laundry, but at least it held its shape well throughout the day.
My jeans and jacket are both staples from Express that I've worn many times. They're both true to size with no surprises in terms of fit or how they wear.
My sandals have been hibernating since summer, but this exact pair is still in stock in most sizes (and in several other colors) and still a great price at under $30 for most sizes. I ordered my usual size and they fit perfectly. Normally I don't like anything higher than a 3" heel for everyday wear and these are just a bit higher than that. Comfort-wise they're still okay, but I wouldn't choose them on a day when I had lot of walking to do.
A couple of years ago (here) I shared some of my methods for organizing my family photos into annual photo albums. 2015 and 2016 were my first two years of staying caught up on keeping our photos organized, and I am motivated to keep at it in 2017, even though I have to admit I dread it! My family loves having the photo books when they are complete (myself included), but it's a tedious task and it's never-ending since we are always doing things and taking more and more photos.
Image via: Shutterfly
This is on my mind in particular right now since February just ended and we had a few more photo-worthy moments than usual last month thanks to our staycation. I'm struggling to find the motivation for this project, but I know I have to tackle it ASAP so I don't get behind and overwhelmed.
I've covered most of what I do in the post I linked above, but I thought I would share a couple of my simple tips and strategies for staying on top of photo organization that I haven't shared before.
1. Take Fewer Pictures
Here's the thing: I don't know the stats on this but I would guess people in 2017 take at least 100 more photos per month than they did in 1990. (That's probably a conservative estimate, but that would be an interesting study!) If you just want to store them on your computer that's fine, but if you want to put them into a photo book it will be impossible to get them all in there. In my books, most photo-worthy events (e.g. School Concert) get one page in the book. I normally don't like more than 5 photos per page or it starts to look busy. Knowing that, when I go to the school concert, I focus on getting those key shots that capture the memory and those will go in the book. Then I put the camera away and just enjoy the experience in real time! I know we want to capture and hold onto every precious moment and memory, but we just can't, no matter how many photos we take. Now instead of sorting through 30 photos from the School Concert, when it comes photo time I only have to sort through ten and pick the best five.
My mom was always great about keeping up with our family photo albums, and those have been helpful to me in giving some perspective about not taking and keeping a million photos per year. In my childhood, if I had a birthday party, 1-2 photos from that event made it to the album. If I had a dance recital...1-2 photos made the album. And you know what? As an adult looking back now, that's enough! I am not sad that there aren't thousands of pictures capturing each movement of my dances. The two photos are enough to remind me of that time and experience in my life. Anything beyond that wouldn't make me any happier in the present time. I'm certainly glad I have some photos, but more isn't always better.
2. Set Deadlines
For me to stay on top of the pictures and photo book game, I have to give myself deadlines and consequences to force myself to do it. Normally I assign the first weekend of the new month as the time to get caught up on photos from the previous month. I don't allow myself to browse the web, scroll social media, read my book etc. that weekend until I have put in some time on the photo project. I don't have to finish it all, but I do need to make progress before I can take a break. If I'm really dreading the task in a given month, I might ask my kids or husband to check in with me about it to give me some extra accountability.
3. Set a Timer
Trying to get all the photo work done at once overwhelms me, so depending on circumstances I might say to myself, "Okay, if I work on photos for 20 minutes, I can scroll Instagram afterwards." Thinking about working on photos for an hour sounds tedious, but 20 minutes I can handle. Sometimes I'll be on a roll when 20 minutes is up and keep going, other times I stop at 20 minutes, take my break, then get back to photos at my next opportunity.
By no means do I think this is the best way or the only way to tackle photos and photo books! It's just what I'm doing and what's working for me right now. And it's always an area where I struggle to find motivation so it seemed like a good topic for today. As always, I love hearing your tips on these topics and how you stay organizes and motivated, so if you have any please send them my way!