2016 Calendars are here!

I am so excited to say that the girls’ 2016 calendars are here!!!! 😀 It was rough trying to get pictures of everyone, particularly towards the end of my pregnancy when I was super tired, stressed, and frazzled but there are far fewer missed days for the year than I expected.

For those of you who don’t actually have any idea what I’m talking about, let me explain. When the Littlest Brewster was teeny tiny, I was obsessed with taking pictures of her. I’m pretty sure most first time parents are obsessed with taking pictures of their children. However, I decided that I wanted to do something with the gajillions of photos, rather than just have them languish on our hard drive forever. But I didn’t want just a photo album, I wanted something interesting and fun. I thought about trying to do a photo book or something like that but quickly realized upon attempting one that it would be a ton of work and money. Then, I came up with the idea of doing a calendar.

Shutterfly lets you put any picture you want on any day you want, which works out really really well if you’re as anal retentive as I am and you meticulously label and file your digital photos. For example, if I were to take 2 photos today, the first would be labeled Jan.22.17.1 and the second would be labeled Jan.22.17.2. And then they would be sorted into month and year folders under each child’s name, with the understanding that if there is more than one child in the photo, it will go into the oldest girl’s file. (i.e. a picture of LB and BIT from today would go into LB’s Jan 2017 folder.) I know this sounds like a ton of work but I find it very soothing to sit with my laptop and “do my pictures” as I call it. Especially if I can do so with a glass of wine…

After I get all the photos for a month labeled and sorted, I upload them to Shutterfly and get that month done for the year. Sometimes I’ll get a few months behind but it’s not really that big of a deal, as I can usually knock out a calendar month of picture placement in 30-45 minutes.

So when you look at the girls’ calendars, you know that the picture placed on Jan 16, 2016 was actually taken on Jan 16, 2016. And so on and so forth, for the whole year. If there’s a day that I missed, I just leave it blank. For the big picture of the month, I just pick my favorite picture of each girl for that month.

And everyone said that I could do it with one kid, but I’d never be able to do it with two.

But I did.

And then everyone said I could do it with two kids, but I’d never be able to do it with three.

But I did.

Granted, Itty Bitty only had 3 months of 2016 to cover but I am still damn proud of myself for having kept this up. I think that it is one of the projects I am most proud of and one of the neatest keepsakes that we have.

But enough tooting my own horn. Here are some snaps from our 2016 calendars!

2016-cal-1 2016-cal-2 2016-cal-3 2016-cal-4 2016-cal-5


Yearly Calendar, 4th Edition

Every year, I take the multitude of pictures that I’ve taken of the girls and turn them into something that I think is really awesome. And, in all actuality, it doesn’t take nearly as much work as you would think, provided that you are as anal-retentive and proactive about downloading and filing the year’s pictures as I am. I understand that not everyone wants to have a crazy photo filing system like I do – most people probably think I’m weird that I find it relaxing to sit at the computer and file my pics, but it’s very soothing for me. However, I think that the ability to create these amazing calendars for LB and BIT to have is well worth overcoming any reluctance to sort through old pictures.

And without further ado, here are some pictures of this 2015’s calendars:

April 2015

April 2015

August 2015

August 2015

December 2015

December 2015

For those of you who are new to the blog and/or have never seen the yearly calendars, what they are is a collection of daily pictures of the girls. I snap a quick picture every day (or as near to every day as I can – you can see a few blank spots in the months above) and then I use Shutterfly to make a calendar of the past year, with the appropriate photo on the appropriate date. (i.e. The picture on December 1st was taken December 1st, and so on.)

Here’s a close-up of BIT’s December page:

Yearly Calendar (3)I have done this every year since the Littlest Brewster made her debut in 2011 and it is so cool to be able to go back and see her grow up through pictures.

LB's Calendar Collection

LB’s Calendar Collection – 2012-2015

BIT is building her own collection of calendars, as well.

BIT's collection - 2014-2015

BIT’s collection – 2014-2015

If I’m strapped for time or I forget until the last minute, I have been known to get pictures of the girls asleep in their beds or I’ll get a picture of them together and use it for both.

And in case you’re wondering just how I file my pictures, each picture is tagged with the date and a number when I upload it. If I took two pictures today, for instance, they would be Feb.4.2016.1 and Feb.4.2016.2. Then, I sort them into files for each girl by year and month. So, one of LB would go in the LB:2016:Feb file and BIT’s would be in BIT:2016:Feb. I do have the rule that if it’s a picture of both girls together, it goes in the Littlest Brewster’s file alone. When I was making BIT’s calendar and I would think that I had missed days, it was often that there was a picture of the two girls and I would just need to snag it from LB’s files.

After the photos are labeled and sorted, I upload them to Shutterfly and get started on the calendar. If you’ve never made a calendar through them, it’s a really easy process and all you have to do is drag and drop the picture to the appropriate day. I promise you that it’s NOT hard and that it’s a great way to spend 30 minutes when you’re afflicted by insomnia.

And voila! An amazing keepsake that your kids will love looking at and you will treasure forever. BIT is still a little too young to get what it is, but the Littlest Brewster can spend hours flipping through the calendars and reminiscing with us about each picture.