You’ve heard of “photo albums” before, right?

When I was still pregnant with NikkiZ, I was trying to put together some photo albums to leave out on the coffee tables before one of our showers. Of course, by “photo album” I mean just that: Photo Album. No scrapbook. I’ve made one scrapbook and I just don’t have the patience to really stick with it. I prefer the slot-for-the-photo album. They lazy man’s scrapbook.

I have always loved photo albums, but the digital camera age has kept me from keeping them as up-to-date since printing isn’t habitual. We don’t use photo printers because; with the amount of photos we print, it is much more economical to make Wal-Mart or Target print them for us. I can get a pint of blood cheaper than I can printer ink.

Since I didn’t have a lot of recent photos in any of the albums, I sat down and essential went through every digital photo I had take in two years and sent over 100 photos to be printed at Wal-Mart. This was when they were the only store locally with the online one-hour service. (I feel like I have to justify using Wal-Mart or Target will think I cheated on him and dump me.) I put the albums together and they were a big hit at the shower.

After NikkiZ was born, I decided I needed to be more disciplined about printing pictures. I got into the habit of going through my photos at the end of every month and sending the album-worthy photos to Target to be printed. Since I have to crop the photos to a 4×6 ratio for printing (the photo labs do that for you if you don’t – but it’s an automatic process so inevitably heads get shaved or appendages get clipped) it can be a lengthy process sending in a batch of photos. A typical month had me printing 70 photos to place in our albums. That might be an overkill, but I’m nothing if not the Queen of Photo Albums. Or maybe the Queen of Overdoing It.

I also take that time to print photos up for family. My Mom and Dad check my blog and my Flickr account, but both of them appreciate The Photo. It’s like the Glass Ketchup Bottle. You just don’t see them that often anymore. I used to send them copies of pictures all of the time back of LilZ when he was a baby, back in the 35mm days, so I try to send them a batch periodically of NikkiZ too. My in-laws, who live locally, like to have copies as well since they have a few albums around the house to stick pictures in. Essentially, it is my way of contributing to our Weekly Sunday Dinner. Since I don’t do the cooking or the cleaning since it’s not my house – I bring photos. And the grand-kids. And the beer.

So, at the end of November I just never found the time to go through the photos from that month. We had gotten the d80, so we took a lot more pictures in November. We also traveled to Louisiana, so there was a huge batch of photos from that trip. I knew the total would be a lot higher, and I just never found the time to get to it. Then December came and went. I had the daunting task of going through November’s photos looming in front of me, and with Christmas and my trip to Tucson, December’s were just as intimidating. So, just like I told myself I wanted NOT to do, I let the two months stack up well into January.

I finally sat down this past weekend and went through November’s photos. It took several hours. I submitted them to be printed yesterday. Do you want to know how many I printed? 186. That’s almost an entire album to itself. I told you: Queen of Overdoing It. December’s batch isn’t quite as huge (the trip to Louisiana did us in) but it will be well over 100. After that, January should be relatively normal since there’s nothing big going on this month. But at the end of today, January is officially over. Tomorrow I will be two month’s behind again. BAH. This is exactly why I told myself to be disciplined about doing it at the end of every month, it becomes too easy to let them pile up if I get behind. Being disciplined is hard. Ask me about the untouched ice-cream cake in the freezer. That thing calls out to me all hours of the night, yet I’ve not yielded to it’s powers.

The Cocoa Puffs on the other hand…

13 thoughts on “You’ve heard of “photo albums” before, right?”

  1. Don’t you have the possibility to directly print your photos in an album? This has saved me in the digital photo age. I have stacks (about 10 years) of pre-digital foto’s that still have to be put in an album.

    Now, i just collect all photo’s i want to print, put them in an online album and send the album to the print shop. I get a hard cover, comic book sized book with photos and text. Easy! Takes less room! And i can print the same album twich, if my parents want it too!

  2. So how much is printing at Target then?

    I started uploading pictures for an album for my fiancé last night and since my internet sucks, got half way through and decided I’d spend 4 hours at Sam’s club doing it and burned them to a disc.

    But none of the sites seem to say how much they are. $.25/ea? $.15?

  3. I am sad to say i am about 2.5 years behind on my albums. Like you, I tried the scrapbooking thing, bought all the supplies a professional would need, (because I didn’t want to look like a beginner you know), did about 4 sheets until my imagination was emptied and never touched them again. BUT, of course, I will get back into it, y’know cuz i have ALL the supplies, so why put them in an album when i will just be taking them back out to scrapbook them? Huh? Huh? Waste of time to do that, might as well do other more important things! Ummm, right. So that it why I am over two years behind. Story of my life.

    We did get the digital wonder this year, and i am thinking bout just putting them on disk rather than on paper, cuz, really, who ever really sits down with photo albums anymore? I am totally trying to convince mysalf of that one, uh huh.

    have a great day Zoot!!

  4. OMG! Shutterfly – that’s all I’m saying. Way cheaper and sooooo much better quality. You can by a savers plan and get 4×6′s for like 13cents. I have like 5 scrapbooks going which is not good since I am already the Queen of procrastination.

  5. Winkflash!

    We order from them all the time. The quality is great – certainly on par with (if not better than) Target or Walmart. First 50 prints (4×6) are free to a new user, but nothing’s stopping you from signing up, printing 50 photos, and never using that account again.

  6. How timely! I just sat down with my mom on Sunday to help her get her 270 pictures from November and December from her camera to our fotki.com site. I’ll never let her get that behind again!

  7. I use Photoworks.com and swear by them. As I come across “print worthy” photos, I automatically save them into a special “prints” album in iPhoto. Then, periodically, I download all those photos in that album to Photoworks. Once they are printed, I delete them from the “prints” album and start the process over. It saves me from having to go through the whole “having to sort through tons of photos” process.

    overall, though – I don’t really do photo albums – I print snaps off for friends and family, but keep most of the photos for us on the computer (backed up). I enjoy just looking at them on iPhoto. My dream is to get one of those really cool digital photo frames that you can put a set of photos on for a slide show. *drool* But they are too expensive now.

    For christmas I did get a scrapbooking software called iRemember, but I haven’t played around with it yet. I could never do traditional scrapbooking – I would rather read, knit, or watch TV than sit with scissors and scraps of paper. Time is precious!

  8. You know, this makes me wonder.. why don’t these picture printing places have a revolution, start offering prints in a ratio more like that of a digital photo? And start selling photo albums with slots that size as well? Doesn’t that make more sense than all the senseless cropping that goes on??

    I haven’t done an album in YEARS. How bad am I?

  9. I just uploaded the print-worthy photos from our recent trip to Hawaii to have printed and ended up with an order for 285 photos–from a one week trip! The place I ordered from does actually offer prints in the “digital photo” size though which is nice.

  10. I used to be addicted to picture taking and filling albums, but lost the habit awhile ago. It helps not having a fancy digital camera to play with. Or cute kids. :)

  11. Ha! The glass ketchup bottle made me laugh. Where did those go? Still laughing…
    I am about , um, 4 years behind in the whole photo album thing. I have my photos on tons of cd’s. Yeah, I really need to get on that.

  12. I’ll second Ashley. You should definitely try Shutterfly. You can crop and edit in their utility after you upload the photos. The photo quality is excellent and you can do glossy or matte finishes.

    They also have a section where you can make cards and calendars and all kinds of other gifty-type things. You can also make some GORGEOUS photo albums – it’s scrapbooking with a computer!

    The only downside is that your photos come by mail a few days later, not in one hour. But I really think it’s worth the wait.

  13. Where on gods green earth do you find picture books? I can only find those ones that take 3 pictures a side. I am a queen of picture books but since they stopped selling pages at wamart I am in limbo.

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