The importance of a printed photograph or album

There's something special about holding a photograph in your hand, whether it be a photo from a recent photo session of your beautiful child, or on old square black and white photo of your grandparents that was taken with an old Brownie that has been passed down over the generations. These are the treasures of the past and present that we hold on to for our future generations. They are our history and they hold the stories that must be remembered. 

My mom keeps all her family's old photos in an old antique chest (literally a treasure chest!). And every now and then we all sit on the floor together as a family and go through all the photos. She tells us stories of her childhood that are remembered through these photos and it allows us to be a part of that time and share in her experience. We get to see and understand people in our family that we never had the chance to meet because their time came way before our time. We get to see my mom as a baby, a grumpy teenager posing under a Christmas tree, a young woman visiting my father's family in Japan for the first time. Seeing these photos, and holding these photos helps us understand our families past, and allows us to create these memories in our heads too.  Physical photographs are treasures. Whether they be individual photos, or an album of photos. These are the memories and moments that we can pass down to our children, and our children's children, so that they too can know their past and their family. 

These days we can get lost in the digital world and the social media and online photo sharing. There's absolutely nothing wrong with this. I do it too, and it's really convenient to share photos and moments with family and friends that don't live so close to us. It allows them to be with us and know what we are doing just for a brief moment, even when we live several states apart. But during the holidays I always gift my family actual photos or giant photo books full of the years photos. The grandparents love this, and count on it every year. With these books they can sit down together and look through it over and over again, reliving the memories that come with the photos, even if they weren't actually there. They know these faces, they know that smile, and many times that's all they need to know the story behind the photo. 

I don't know about your kids, but mine love hearing stories about themselves when they were younger. So there's nothing better then getting the album or photo book out and telling them real stories of when they were babies. Not only is it super fun for them, but it helps me remember and relive some of those precious moments that over time slowly start to fade from my memory and need a little refreshing!

Photo prints and books keep those moments alive. They might sit on our book shelves most of the time, but sometimes they will catch our eye unexpectedly and we will pull the album, full of our photos, off the shelf, sit down and look at it. And smile.