Simplify 4 Lives

A quest for a life that's simpler, sweeter, and a little more satisfying…

Photo Books September 16, 2010

Filed under: Organize,Simplify — celestesda @ 9:56 pm

Raise your hand if you are one of those people out there who love to spend time sending in your digital photos, receiving them via mail or your local printing shop, and then coming home only to have to label them, and then spend even more time placing them in a photo album!?   This is excruciating torture for me.  I’m terrible at it.  In fact, I do a good job if I get them printed at all.  Currently, I have two drawers full of printed pictures with no permanent home.  With my snail-slow internet speed, it takes hours to get them all sent in, not to mention all of the after-print work.  Isn’t there an easier way we can do this?  Yes.  There is.  It’s called a Photo Book.

For those of you out there who do not know what a photo book is, here is a brief explanation:  a photo book is a book that you customize using your photos.  While it does eliminate the the post-production work, it does add a little extra time during the pre-printing stage.  For me, it cuts the work down because of many reasons:  it comes in a cute little binding that you’ve chosen and customized, you type the captions in while you’re in the design mode, and you can choose a cutesy color-coordinated theme, kind of like a little scrapbook!  Best of all, most hardcover books are printed with a spine label.  Another plus for me is that I find myself being a little more picky about what I actually print, because I can store those unprinted, not-so-great photos on a disc and look at them again anytime I want.

Pricing isn’t cheap, but I wait for specials, so I usually don’t pay full-price, and they usually cost less for me to design and order a book that to print all of the pictures.  I’m thinking that for all future picture orders, I will use this method, unless it is a print that I specifically plan to print.  I just received one yesterday that I paid a total of $6.00 for!  I only had to pay shipping!  And it’s 20 pages long…I’m so excited about it!!

A couple of pages of my newest photo book

Last page of the new photo book

Cute little cover. This is an 8 x 8 hardcover book.

I have a friend who does a book at the end of each year.  It takes a lot of time, but it’s the coolest project by the end, and she’s probably put less time into it than she would have if she did it the “old-fashioned” way.

Does this sound like a fun, organization project you might like to try?  It’s easier than it sounds, so don’t be intimidated by the technology part, just follow the directions.  There are tons of sites out there to try, but my favorite of the moment is Shutterfly, who is offering 30% savings right now.  I might try a couple of others, based on specials.  Picaboo has a couple of great specials right now:   a free photo book for new members with a special code (1FBLGB-7W), and a buy one, get one free through 9/28.

I think this will be just one more wonderful step to my newly organized life!


Organizing Part I September 12, 2010

Filed under: Organize — celestesda @ 10:24 pm

I spent a big part of yesterday afternoon on cleaning out, throwing away, and attempting organization.  I chose to focus on the kitchen first, because it is a central location that we use for a lot of different activities, and it’s highly visible. I got about a 1/4 of the way through, with only completing my telephone counter/cabinet area, and my computer/desk area.  I’m proud to say that it worked!  I threw a lot of stuff away, and I’ve about filled up my first box of yard sale items.  Not only does it look good on the outside, the insides of the cabinets look great too! 🙂  It’s not fancy, but it’s clean and everything that’s left has a place. I am posting before and after pics.  I’m already seeing results and it’s given me the motivation to keep it up!  Have any of you gotten started yet?  I’d love to hear about it!

Telephone Cabinet Before

Telephone Cabinet After

Computer Desk Area Before

Computer Desk Area After

Computer Desk Area After