I’m not a super sentimental person. I never kept baby books for my kids. I’m guilty of throwing out their artwork without thinking twice. But one thing I am consistent about creating is family yearbooks. And if you haven’t made a family yearbook before, I want to encourage (maybe even convince) you to give it a try!
So I’m going to boss you around a little and tell you, you should create a family yearbook.
Yes, even for the year 2020.
If you are a “real life” friend of mine or follow me on Instagram, you have probably heard me talk about family yearbooks. I’ve made year books for our family at the end of every year for 11 years now. While some years the book might not get completed until spring of the following year… the book eventually gets done. I even have a book of my husband and I for our “pre-kid” years.
No wrong way
There is no wrong way to do a family yearbook. However makes sense to you. Personally, I go in chronological order and after I make it through the year’s major events/moments, I then create additional pages with remaining “everyday” pictures. Pages such as:
- Date nights
- Outdoor adventures
- School days/performances
- House projects
- And one page for each child that includes solo pictures and lists their favorite things and any information I want to remember about them that year. I think these pages are just as important as documenting the entire year as a family. When you have more than one child, it’s important for each of them to feel seen as individuals and for us as parents to take the time to call out their talents, favorites, and growth.
Away with your excuses
“But Jaimi,” you might be saying right now, “we literally did nothing worth noting this year.” Or “my kids are still little and all my pictures are of them playing at home/the park/with each other. Who wants to look at those pictures?”
Sometimes the most mundane days/years are the pictures you will treasure the most as your kids age. One year our book was PACKED with travel pictures and adventures. But I also made a page dedicated to “at home.” Photos of my kids drawing with sidewalk chalk. Of my husband reading to them. My oldest son working in the yard. These are the moments we will forget one day… the pictures having a place in the book reminds us of the little things of daily life. Those times shape who we/they become.
So yes, in spite of those things. Make the book.
Yes. Even when you stay close to home. Even when you assume your kids don’t care. Make the book.
Because one day you will look back and think “What did we do in 2020, anyway?”
One day your kids will ask, “What did I do when I was a baby? What did I look like? Where did we live?”
Need a few more reasons for making family yearbooks?
- Gives you the opportunity to process the year while creating
- Creating a book can be super quick and simple or detailed and a longer process. It’s totally up to you!
- Your pictures actually get used
- Provides a family activity for years to come
- Your family has a tactile way to reminisce together
- Kids can see first hand how they grow and change
- Your family story will be purposefully written down and recorded
- You will realize the year was actually packed with good, hard, fun, annoying, and breathtaking moments. All those moments deserve space in your book.
Rated: Most read books in the house
Our growing stack of family yearbooks are flipped through at least 3-4 times each week by my kids. We especially enjoy looking at them all together prior to birthdays or around New Year’s.
Even though your 2020 book might not contain as many pages as other years, I guarantee you will still appreciate having the book down the road. Make the book, mama, and celebrate your family in a special way.
I do a picture a day yearbook for my family. I created the template on shutterfly when my daughter was a baby. Now, I just have to plug in the pictures, update the wording, and order it at the end of the year. It’s around $100 after all the upgrades, but it’s well worth it.
That’s awesome Susan! I agree! So worth the time and money!
Where do you get your books made?
I’ve used Shutterfly for all my books. But you can make them from many stores/sites! Costco, Walgreens, I think even places like Office Max offer it.
What company do you use? Any suggestions on organizing photos for yearbooks? Making the book? Thanks!
I use Shutterfly and have been really happy with them!
Once you upload photos within their site they put them into months/years and even where the photo was uploaded from (IG, Facebook, etc) so you can search for your photos many different ways.
Shutterfly walks you thru the process or you can do it yourself. Within the post I list a few things/ideas that I include in my book…but I think the best way is to make it personal to your family ☺️ Have fun!
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