Day to Day Adventures

Time to Organize on the Photo Challenge Week #2

2015, Photo ChallengeKim Brush2 Comments
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Join the Photo Challenge -

Week #2 of the Photo Challenge is all about organizing your photos that you gathered last week!

Last week I shared a quick way to get started organizing the boxes of photos in our homes!  Are your family photos gathered in from all over the house, from boxes, drawers, and closets?  Did you finish or is there still more to do?  Was it easy or did you find boxes of pictures scattered everywhere?  Do you still need to start?  It is NOT too late! 

I went in to this project knowing it was BIG.  And it was STILL was overwhelming.

I started on Sunday afternoon because I was blessed with a couple of hours alone at home.  Quickly, I started to feel like I could NOT handle this.  It was too much.  To combat this feeling I promised myself I would just go through one box.  

Need to catch up?

So that’s what I did.  Then I walked away and had a peanut butter cup.  I like rewards. LOLIt was an awesome feeling!  (Not the pb cup)  I knew I could do it again and make more progress.

My plan was to gather photos in my work room but I changed my mind.  Most of the pictures I was working with were in the basement.  The ping pong table was a great place to make piles.  It was close to the boxes of pictures and out of the way of other projects.  Later I went back and tackled another box.  And later still another.  Small bites help to make HUGE projects manageable.

I don’t have quite all of our loose photos in the basement but I made BIG progress!

The photo challenge goals from last week . . .

  1. Locate and gather all of your photos from your nooks n crannies… ALL OF THEM!
  2. Lay them out in a clear space
Photo Challenge week 2 -

Week #2 . . . TIME TO SORT

There are SO many ways to sort your photos.  Here is a list of a few ways but I think sorting is somewhat personal to you and your photos.  Sometimes working with the most recent photos is best because they are fresher in your memory.  But if you are like me, then your recent photos haven’t been printed yet.  

Be sure to have some boxes, baskets or folders to put your sorted photos in.  The last thing you want is to have your careful sorting rearranged by another person, pet or child!

Identify the photos you want to keep

Some photos in your collection are not worth keeping.  That will shock some of you.  My husband has a hard time getting rid of photos even if they are blurry or low quality.  However you will reduce your work by focusing the best photos and the ones that mean the most to you and your family.


Photo Challenge week 2 -

By levels of importance--with large amounts of photos it helps to sort to narrow your focus to the most important photos. 

  • Make 3 piles. 
  • Pile 1 is for the photos you would be heart broken to loose. 
  • Pile 2 holds the photos that help to tell the story but are not quite as precious to you.
  • Pile 3 are photos that you could throw away and not ever think about again.  Having a Pile 3 in any method is a great way to make sure you focus your energy and time on those pictures that you love the most.

Chronologically--Obviously if you know when the photos were taken then it is pretty easy to put them in order.   

By subject--If you are working with family history photos(ones from your parents or grandparents) you may have no idea when the photo was taken.  So it may be best to sort by subject.  You can sort by person, location, or event. If you can identify where then often the when will be narrowed down as well.  

Another method—if you have access to an older family member who is able to work with you then you could start with the oldest photos.  If they don’t mind you, could set up a video camera to capture the “commentary” about the photos.  That would be priceless when it comes to documenting what the photos are about.


  • Turn on a movie or listen to a podcast or book on tape--I did this and time went a lot faster!
  • Do it with a family member or friend
  • Use fun boxes, folders or baskets for sorting
  • Set a timer for 25 minutes & get to work.  Then take a 5 minute break to go outside or stretch.  This job is hard on the eyes and back
  • Do short sessions when you have time

Thinking ahead to what is next

What are you going to do with your photos?  Albums, scan to digital, enlarge to frame, photo wall or collage frame, copies for others. Make sure to think about that as you sort and organize. 

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