And seriously, how much do you love the camera he's holding? That camera took sooo many of the pictures that house my family's memories. This picture makes me smile in SO many ways! Little did we know the "Slide Project" had been set in motion way back then - and all because of that camera.....
Fast forward 40+ years (43 to be exact) and my sisters and I had this idea to organize the family slides into a usable system. One sister drove from Colorado with a carload of Kodak carousels and a slide projector borrowed from her school (and extra bulbs, thank goodness!) and the other came from San Diego, ALSO with a slide projector in tow. What we thought would be a "couple of hours" of watching slides and telling a few stories turned into so much more.
We refer to it as the Slide Project. We started with close to 11,000 slides - in boxes, carousels and loose items. We had two slide projectors going -- sorting, loading the slides into slide projectors AND recording what we knew about each and every slide. We reduced the numbers by taking out badly focused pictures, duplicates and slides that didn't tell much of a story. Honestly, how many fuzzy pictures of zoo animals do we need when there are no family members in them?
Thankfully, my parents had spent a summer (back in the 90's) going through the carousels writing down a simple description of the slides they were watching. Those summaries were invaluable - but there was still a TON of work that week. We spent 5, 8-hour days at my dining room table and projecting the slides onto the wall. We bundled the slides into neat piles of 50 and off they went to get scanned. The week was long and tiring but everyone agrees that the Slide Project really was one of the greatest accomplishments we've done.
That Christmas, we gave everyone in the family flash drives of the project and Dad got a digital frame and within minutes of opening the frame, he had that flash drive in place and those slides played 24/7 in his apartment for the next few years. It was a beautiful thing knowing that he could enjoy our family's legacy and robust history during his final years. What a true blessing. He often told stories of how he would just watch the slide show on his digital frame and enjoy the flood of memories they brought back.
That week of working on the Slide Project (final tally was 11,000 slides reduced to under 3,000) was full of laughter, tears, and frustration, but most of all -- lots of story-telling. We were able to condense slides for cousins, aunts and uncles and sent slides and digital images to them as well.
The Slide Project and the resulting "feels" have been on my mind ever since. I just knew that there must be a way to share the love of the resulting project with others. This year, I decided that I wanted to branch out, push the envelope, step out of my comfort zone, and help others with Slide Projects of their own.
All of that led to Creating Memories Now. Sharing my passion - isn't that really what life is all about?
Do you have slides or photographs sitting in a box (or boxes) screaming to be seen and enjoyed?
I'd love to help. Let me know in the comments below if you or your family has done something similar or if it is something that has always been on your "to do" list.
Here's to the Slide Project! The excitement of discovery awaits! #NoMoreShoeboxes