In order to move from a four bedroom house to a 35 foot RV, Tom and I had to get rid of lots of stuff, which I am planning on writing more about soon.  The stuff that was hardest to part with was the stuff that held memories – especially pictures and small mementos.  I spent hours scanning pictures in to the computer (I wrote more about it on this related post) and then I gave the pictures away.  Giving things away turns out to be an excellent way to get rid of stuff.  People are so thankful to get it that you feel really good about getting rid of it and want to do it some more!

I even scanned stuff that wasn’t paper – ribbons and pins.  And I took digital pictures of other mementos such as trophies, Tom’s high school football helmet, stuffed animals – and then we released them to be free!  Fortunately the church was having a Trash and Treasure sale and most of it could go there, so again, we felt good about getting rid of it.

Finally I finished scanning, we moved into the RV, and – wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles – we had plenty of room for the stuff we kept.  Now that I am retired, I have been working on putting all the scans into some coherent order.  I try to spend a couple of hours on it each day, and I now have everything sorted by year – no minor task.  I finally got the pictures from before 1978 ready to put on a travel drive so that I could put them on display in our digital picture frame.  But there is one problem.  In order to expedite the scanning, I scanned as many as eight pictures at the same time.  So they show up as one big picture in the scanned files (I have included an example just to give you an idea of the process).  Which looks bad in the picture frame and leads to conversations like this:

Some of Tom's school pictures
Some of Tom’s school pictures

“What’s that picture?”

“I’m not sure – is it your dad as a baby?”

“No, I think it is my grandmother’s dog.”

“Are you sure?  It looks more like a football.”

Today I started cropping and dividing the pictures that I scanned together.  I knew this would be a problem when I did it, but I reasoned that I would have more time once I retired.  Which I do, but the process is every bit as tedious as it sounds.  I took some time out to write this blog post because my eyes were going crossed.

Oh well, I know I will be pleased with the results when I am done.