As a photographer, I am biased when it comes to documenting life. I naturally have the desire to preserve memories through photography, but I realize most people don’t know how to document their life, or where to start. Figuring out the best way to document your life is a daunting task. The traditional ideas of scrapbooking and journaling might seem time consuming, expensive, and complicated. I totally relate to feeling like documenting your life is a project too big to undertake.
When I started scrapbooking when I was in middle school, I bought all sorts of fancy scrapbooking supplies, photo albums, and patterned papers. I made a scrapbook album layout with stickers and embellishments for each major event of the year. However, throughout the years I’ve experimented with the many different ways of documenting your life. I’ve found a few options that are both super easy and creative and I am sharing them all with you in this post!
One Note Before You Start Documenting Your Life
Before you start documenting your life, you need to embrace one thing: your life is not boring! Luckily, you’ve made it to this blog post which shows that you already have some interest in documenting your life and recognize its importance. Through years of documenting my life and scrapbooking, I’ve learned that the mundane, simple moments of life are the most fun to look back on years later. These are the details that shape our lives, so trust that your life is interesting and worthy of documenting!
5 Creative and Easy Ways to Document Your Life
1. Try a Pre-Made Journal or Photo Album
The easiest place to start with documenting your life is a pre-made journal or photo album. These journals and albums give you fill-in-the-blanks for special events and memories. Most important, they’re designed to make it super easy to continue day after day or each month.
I have personally loved using this 5-Year Memory Journal. The journal prompts you each day with a new suggestion, ranging from the first song you heard that day or the person you love most. It’s a fun way to see how your answers evolve over five years!
Being that pre-made journals and photos albums are so easy to keep up with, there are plenty to choose from. Do a quick search online for one that fits your interests and what you want to get out of documenting your life.
2. Keep Lists of Your Favorite Things to Document Your Life
Another easy way to start documenting your life is to keep lists. The Type A organizer in me loves a list! This can be a super easy way to document your life if you aren’t interested in writing novels about your memories or don’t want to create photo albums.
I absolutely love Listography books, and I own their Your Life in Lists book and the Film Listography book. At the bottom of this post I rounded up some of my favorites. Each page contains a cheeky illustration and a prompt to create a list. It’s a super easy way to categorize your favorite things and experiences.
3. Create a Digital Photo Album
If you want to want to start documenting your life in photos, an easy place to start is on your phone. For example, you could create a photo folder for each month or year and add important photos to it as you take them. Assigning your photos to a folder is a quick and easy way to keep your photos organized throughout the year. At the end of each month or year you can use a service to print them out or get a photo album made. Check out #5 below for a few tips on creating a photo album of your own!
4. Create a Memorabilia Memory Box
Collecting and saving memorabilia such as ticket stubs, postcards, and match boxes is an easy way to preserve memories. I typically incorporate these into my yearly photo albums, but you could simply dedicate a space to collect these items. Try repurposing an old box and start collecting special paper goods and small items from your everyday life. You could think of it as an old-school time capsule!
5. Start a Photo Album
If you are ready to dive into something slightly more advanced, create a photo album for the month or year. You could also make one just for a special event or trip. There are plenty of ways to create photo albums beyond traditional scrapbooking with expensive papers and stickers.
For instance, I create one photo album per year. I use products like pre-cut papers and clear pocket pages that make it super simple and easy to plug photos in. The great thing about this system is that you can use just photos or include any of the ideas above like journaling, list making, and displaying memorabilia. As a result, you’ll create a detailed snapshot of your life in a given time frame. For some of my favorite products for making photo albums, head to my roundup below.
Document Your Life Today
As I have shown, there are several creative and easy ways to start documenting your life. Above all, I want you to know that your life is worth documenting. Every moment from your morning routine to your wedding can and should be included! If you need a little help getting started, check out these products I love and use to document my own life.
Shop My Favorites
- This 5-Year Memory Journal gives you a prompt each and every day. This is my fifth year using mine and it’s so fun to look back on my previous answers.
- This Kikki.k 365 Journal gives you space to write memories, feelings, and experiences of your life each day.
- Our Q&A a Day gives you and your partner a fun way to document your lives together.
- I LOVE Listography books, especially this one that gives you prompts to document your life in lists.
- Another favorite of mine, the Film Listography book.
- If travel is something you’d like to document, this Listography book is perfect for you.
- For photo albums, I use these 6×8″ photo albums.
- Project Life brand has a ton of fun pre-cut papers you can stick right into a photo album. I am currently using this kit.
- The clear photo pages I use in my photo albums. They come in different sizes and layouts, making it SO easy to pull together a photo album.
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