Friday, May 14, 2010

What Do You Do With All of That Stuff??

I was chatting with a member of the local genealogy club the other afternoon, she was sharing some family data to include in the club's cemetery books, she wanted the dates correct before we publish.  It was my delight to take the information.  (Thanks to friend Mary for making the corrections on the data base.)

As we chatted, the discussion morfed over to cleaning out her mother's home, which is 3 floors, basement and garage full of family things, saved for several generations.  It is overwhelming, we can all relate.  She acknowledges that there are any number of pieces she would love to have, but, alas, her own home is full.

What I suggested to her is to take photos.  Lots and lots of photos.  She has a digital camera, so, there is no cost involved in taking 2, 5, maybe even 10 photos of each special thing in her mother's home.  I suggested she take over all photos, photos up close, photos from different angles, photos with and without the flash, and where possible, without other items in the background that might clutter up the photo. 

It is possible to take photos of photos hanging on the walls of your ancestor's home.  The process is a bit tricky, but with some patience and practice, you can procure a decent photo of the treasured photos.

The actual artifact may be sold or given to other family members, or maybe even a historical society, but, she will always have her photos to look at, remember and share with other family.

Left, my hutch, a wedding gift from my grandmother, Minnie Agnes Halterman Trumbo.  Even when I am away from home during Tana travels, I can pull up the image and spend a moment or two with my memories.

*Clipart graphic of camera courtesy of

Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence


TennLady said...

Good idea. Nice to have nice things to worry about instead of cleaning out two stories and garage of accumulated garbage pickings.

Michelle Goodrum said...

Good advice. I've been doing that and find it to be a big relief. I can't keep everything but the pictures allow me to keep the memories.

We used to do that with the kids too when we would go to the beach. They wanted to keep the snails and startish, etc so we would take a picture of the kids and the creature. Everyone was happy and we still have some awesome pictures of smiling children with their "treasures."