Monday, December 30, 2019

On the Record: Tools for Documenting 2020

Literally nobody: 
Me: OMG I can't believe it's already 2020...that's practically the future. I have so many feels, and thoughts, and plans, and dreams, LET ME BLOG ABOUT IT!!


Ok. Let's be honest- the blog has been getting a bit dusty recently (the last 3 years is recent, right? Well, considering I still think of myself as a "recent" college grad -against all evidence to the contrary- we'll go with yes.) And though a new year (and new decade!!) should be the perfect Venn Diagram of nostalgia and possibility to get my creative juices's just....not gonna happen. Don't get me wrong- I'm not above the New Year's hype. In the next few days, I'm nearly guaranteed to get overcome by the (warp speed) passage of time and weep quietly into my sparkling pear cider over the misty water-colored memmmmmoriiiiies of it all. I'm also most certainly going to get caught up in the resolution pressure and come up with elaborate New Year, New Me schemes (that I will unceremoniously abandon in the matter of weeks). But in this moment, I don't have the capacity (mental or logistical) to wax nostalgically about the '10's (or anything really). It's honestly all I can do to keep up with the pace of now, I struggle to look too far back or forward. 

BUT- I DO love documenting and memory keeping- and have found a few projects and tools over the years that I'm planning to bring into 2020. Thought I'd share these favs here!

If you want to....
Be a Movie Star:
I'm about to wrap our fourth year of capturing little snippets via One Second Every Day and it remains just one of my very favorite things. I love that it encourages me to record more footage of our makes me notice and appreciate the regular everyday moments (and micro-moments) that add up to a whole life. You can see our compilations: #bowdens1se and download the app to start your own. 

If you want to....
Rekindle Your Love for Dear Old Diary: 
Always wanted to journal, but never seem to find the time (or motivation)? I feel you. But the One Line a Day journal makes it about as easy as it's ever going to get. It's a five-year journal with one page per day of the year. Each page has room for a few sentences from that day, which in my experience is just enough to record some meaningful memories (or even just mundane happenings) without getting overwhelmed by the task of keeping up. Sure, I am usually at least a week or two behind, but I managed to fill up my last volume with relatively few gaps (unless you count the 4 year hiatus I took from 2010 to 2015). And the payoff is so fun when you're able to look back on "your day in history" (I always describe it as "analog Timehop") and marvel at how far you've come (or how some things never change). 

If you want to....
Print Some Real Live Pictures on Real Live Paper:
Chat books, ya'll. This subscription service has been a total game-changer for me. I have it connected to my Instagram (but it works with any social channel, or just your phone's camera roll), so it automatically funnels all my pics (and wordy, wordy captions!) into a book...when it reaches 60 pages- boom! Prints and ships. I'm on my 35th volume (I started in June of 2013- back when we were welcoming baby Finney!) and they are the only family photo albums I have. I've got BIG dreams of making 2020 the year I finally get my act together and make family "yearbook" photo albums (I only have 14 years of married life to catch up on...) but regardless of if I ever dig myself out of that mom-guilt hole (and digital file mountains), I'm endlessly thankful for how easy Chatbooks makes it to (literally) hold on to our memories. (If you're new to the game you can save $10 on your first order.)
If you want to....
Listen to Something Besides The Frozen 2 Soundtrack: 
(Ok- this one isn't about documenting memories...but it is about making memories, and it's a fun project to kick off a new year!)
In a music rut? Solution: The Magical Musical Mystery Tour. "The what now?" you ask? (Well I've only been sharing it every week on my Instagram stories for a year...but I'll forgive you if you missed it, just as you'll forgive me for talking about it again). In an effort to expand our family's musical repertoire, we introduced a year-long project to listen to different artists each week. And it was WILDLY SUCCESSFUL. By that I mean-my van jams were mercifully light on the Kidz Bop, and my kids actually might know a thing or two about musicians beyond Taylor Swift. (not hating, Tay Tay!) I've got a new version in the works for 2020 (aiming to start mid-January) but in the meantime, you can rock the original version:
You can also check out the playlist with all our pre-filtered picks.

I know I get a little over the top sometimes with documenting alllll the things (I hear you, Dustin! I'm not changing, but I hear you!) but these apps and tools help me capture things without getting (too) stressed. If you give any of these a shot- let me know! I'd love to follow along!

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