Monday, May 26, 2014

Creating a Vacation Memory Book

Disclosure: This is a review for Shutterfly. I was asked to review my most recent photo book experience. I will be compensated in the form of Shutterfly coupons for this post. All opinions are my own.

One of my favorite parts of blogging is that I can look back on the past for pictures and other reminders. Was James walking by 12 months? I can check the blog. Someone wants ideas for a Mickey Mouse birthday party? I can check the blog. I've gotten way, WAY behind, but I'm compiling our memories from the blog into photo albums. With very little adjusting I can create books of months so that I can pull the books out to share instead of opening my computer. While there are plenty of websites and programs that will pull from my blog and slap it into a book for me, I've chosen to use Shutterfly and create my own so that I can make my photo albums look exactly like I want them to. Shutterfly allows almost complete freedom as far as that goes.

Back around Mother's Day I decided it was time to FINALLY compile our Disney World pictures into albums for myself and my mom. I had put it off for a few reasons - we'd lost Sonny and it was strange looking at the photos and there were just HUNDREDS of pictures to pull from. I took pictures with my camera and my phone and Sonny took pictures with his camera and his phone so we had TONS. I finally decided to use my blog posts as a starting point and add extra pictures that I wanted.

Shutterfly takes almost no time to learn to use. Just like a scrapbook, I can click the customize button and move things around and resize things just like I would if the photos were in my hands. I can add text boxes to add words, add embellishments if there's a blank spot, and change everything from text font and color to where the photos are placed and the background everything is on. It is easy peasy. Feel free to ask me if you have questions about HOW to make one. 

Click the photo to make it larger. I've added some tips for creating custom photo books.

I am SO satisfied with how my book turned out. I wound up making myself the 12x12 size because that's what all of my photo albums are, but I made a smaller version for Mom and it was perfect, too. I almost always go the hard cover route, but I made Laura one of our SeaWorld and Legoland trip for Mother's Day with a soft cover and it was still very nice. I will probably order James a small, soft-cover version of our Disney album because he's enjoyed flipping through mine so much.

One great thing is that they have a lay-flat option for pages. I didn't choose it for this book, but it would be a great feature!

Look at how excited that boy is to see Mickey! I am so glad I have this to look at forever!

I added a TON of text to my book. I just took everything I'd written on my blog and copy and pasted it into the book. Because it's customizable I can change the font, size, and even the text box size.

Just for is BIG.

Another of my favorite features is that you can choose to add an envelope to the back for hard cover books. What a fun way to keep up with loose mementos! Be aware that YOU put it in. Don't throw it away in the box because it's separate.

I have mentioned time and again my love for Shutterfly photo books. It is SO simple to turn your vacation photos into a memory book. They're running several promotions right now including Free Shipping on orders over $29 with the code Ship29, up to 40% off on photo books with the code UP40PB, and 50 free 4x6 prints for new customers. Check out what you can do on Shutterfly today!

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