Musings of Captain Justice a/k/a Gil Jones

Making memories, what price, how to make, record, store and share

Making memories: are we doing the best we can, and are we preserving and sharing the memories we make?

[The wasted spending] was just 4 days since canceling our session, already totaling over $200 for un necessary things.  My nails only lasted about 2 weeks, my hair is gone, and seven weeks passed when I got the phone call from our doctor.  It was not something I expected and the cancer has spread very quickly.  I will be leaving my husband, my 6 year old girl and my now 2 year old – not by choice.

Via Fototails Photography, Jeanine Thurston, ( accessed 3 JAN 2011)

You’ve probably seen this posting referenced on Facebook. The letter from which this quote comes is — to say the least — poignant. The letter bleeds with the angst of this lady facing what she understands in hindsight to have been the folly of doing something frivolous instead of making memories. It deserves a careful and caring read.

The point is not so much about the foregone photos but the memories that would have been created by them. How many times have each of us passed up an opportunity to make a memory for something far less important. After all if you don’t seize the moment, it’s gone forever and conversely the memory made in the space of a few minutes or hours can last for decades — possibly for many people. Like that credit card commercial declares: Priceless.

Making memories. How do you do it? What have you passed up in the last month? Where and when do you make memories, and with whom? About whom? For whom? How do you/we share or store those memories? Karen could have both created and stored those memories of her child in photos and shared them with others for years to come. How will we record, store and manage our memories?

This is important because the memories we have shape us and the memories (and therefore experience and knowledge) we share help to shape future generations.

There exists a huge array of uses of technology to record memories ranging from the candid shot on your cell/camera phone to numerous approaches for storing and sharing the record through technology. Let’s look at some of those venues and consider whether the existence of these tools is an imperative for making sure we create the fabulous memories and take the care to record them. Some of those tools are:

  • for digging out the past as you record the present for future generations.
  • Memolane — an interesting site that builds a timeline something like Facebook now does. It’s unique in that it gathers your data from many sources.
  • Facebook — we all know about Facebook’s new Timeline approach.
  • Flickr and Picasa for online photo sharing.
  • Storage on your own computer with electronic albums and organizers such as Adobe’s Photoshop Elements.
  • Writing your own memoirs with tools such as WriteMyMemoirs. Or a full autobiography.
  • By blogging as with this blog or that of my cycling and sailing friend Don Bynum.
  • Other means include audio and video recordings, pen and ink journals, cards with family recipes, and ways that only your imagination will find.

Making memories is important. But recording them is even more important with the passage of the oral tradition. In times past — far before my time — large families lived close to one another in multiple generations. They worked, played and ate together. And they talked. They told the family stories and repeated them over the years. Of course, the stories got better and better  🙂  but at least they were told.

When is the last time your family ate together or sat around a fireplace and told the traditional stories of your family? I know that I’ve lost many of mine with the passing of my grandmother and one particular aunt who knew all!

Making memories is important but it becomes every bit as important to record and preserve them. We have an unprecedented opportunity today to record, preserve and share our memories. Karen had the chance to do just that only to lament the passing of those opportunities. Let’s not let that happen to us.

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