The tree is perfect. The kids' ornaments are displayed with pride. The recipe cards are pulled out and the tablescape is painstakingly set. We spend so much time over the holidays capturing memories -- saving those moments for a lifetime of looking back and remembering the good old days. But are you doing enough to make sure you can always access those memories?
Most families capture memories now on their phones. Do you leave those images on your phone or on your camera's memory card? Your first task is to transfer those from your device to a hard drive. Here's what I recommend.
- Save your images to your computer's hard drive throughout the year. Use a file system so they're easy to manage and find. I organize my images by year, then by month, then by date taken.
- Several times a year transfer those images to an external hard drive. Use the same filing system to make the transfer easy. Set a reminder on your calendar so you don't forget. (I do it each month)
- You should have AT LEAST two forms of back up, so I would recommend the cloud as your second back up. There are plenty of plans out there. Right now, Amazon has free photo storage in their cloud for Prime Members.
- A third back up would be totally awesome. Another external hard drive that lives in a fire safe or safety deposit box is a good option.
Nothing is forever though. Remember floppy disks for the a: drive? It's hard to extract data from those anymore. The company you choose to use for your cloud storage could go out of business. Or you may decide you don't want to keep paying for the service. During those scheduled times that you are backing up your memories, it's a good idea to google the newest and best ways to save digital data. Be prepared to migrate your data to a new storage device.
I'll write soon on why it's a good idea to have actual physical prints as another way of storing your memories. I know, right? That seems like taking a step back in time, but it's actually the almost timeless way of preserving images.
Here's to capturing all those memories!