Photo Scanning, Goodreads, Vacation

I spent many hours after work last week scanning all of my old photographs. I’ve wanted to get rid of my physical photographs for years (just another step in my ongoing minimalist existence), so I finally ordered a scanner and took care of that task for good. I’ll drop off the old photos with my sister the next time I see her, rather than just throwing them away, so she can look through them to see if there’s any she’d like to keep.

Some of my photos didn’t have dates on the back, but I think I made pretty good guesses. I was at least close enough that I could put them in appropriate folders by year. The most important thing is that I have them digitally stored and they’ll no longer take up space in my apartment.

The next step with the scanner is converting Paul’s collection of photographs to electronic format, but he’s not ready to give me permission to dispose of the physical photos once I scan them. We don’t need both, I say! Especially when the paper versions spend their time stuck in a closet, hardly ever brought out — digital photos are more accessible and searchable. After all the photo-scanning is over I’ll sell or otherwise get rid of the scanner itself, too.

Although the scanning, editing, and tagging was a tedious task, I enjoyed it. I like working with and organizing photos (not that I have an expensive camera or know how to do anything fancy; I adjust the exposure settings a bit when a photo is too light/dark, fix red eye issues, do some cropping — simple stuff like that).


I finished reading Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand. I heard about it when the book was released back in 2010, but didn’t think it was something I’d enjoy until Paul’s mom recommended it to me.

It was a very powerful story. I even read a section out loud to Paul one night, which I don’t think I’ve ever done before. (Let’s just say it involved three men trapped on a tiny rubber life raft, in the middle of the Pacific ocean, with sharks constantly lunging at them. Nobody was looking for them because they were presumed dead. When they finally reached land after over 50 days on the water, they were captured by Japanese soldiers and spent the next few years in horrific POW camps.) Believe me, this book was intense.


Paul and I will be on vacation from September 22-30. We’re attending weddings on two consecutive weekends (one in his hometown of Buffalo, NY, the second in Portland, OR), so we decided to take the week off in-between so we could spend more time in each of those cities rather than doing a bunch of flying back and forth. I haven’t had a full week off work since I started my current job last September (when I went to Boston in June I only took off three days), so this will be a nice break. I have a feeling Paul is looking forward to it just as much as I am!

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  • Reply cebrought September 17, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    Have fun:)) FYI- I got my thyroid tests back and my TSH went from 5.9 to 2.2. Much improved. Not sure how much of that was due to the Whole 30 eating plan because I have been doing other things as well.

    • Reply Naturally Minimalist September 18, 2012 at 8:31 pm

      That’s super! Mine hasn’t been that low in a while. I know I definitely felt better when I was. Hopefully I’ll get back in that vicinity soon!

  • Reply Leah September 18, 2012 at 6:57 am

    ooh, enjoy Portland! Let me know if you need any recommendations. My parents live just outside of Portland (and I went to college in the area), so I’m pretty well acquainted with some hip parts.

    Re: photos, I admire your willingness to let go of the actual photos. I don’t think I could do that. I did get a scanner recently, and I’m doing some slow work on getting all my teaching resources scanned in. I do plan to recycle most of those (except the ones I use frequently on paper and only scanned in to email to others) once I’m done. Hoping we can get rid of one of our two filing cabinets.

    That book sounds amazing. Matt loves WWII stuff, so this sounds perfect for a Christmas gift.

    • Reply Naturally Minimalist September 18, 2012 at 8:33 pm

      As long as I can still look at the photos, why do I need to hold them in my hand? Some of them I can actually see BETTER on the computer because I can lighten the exposure on the photos that are too dark. 🙂

      I would love any Portland recs! We’ll only be there on a Thurs afternoon through the weekend (so technically Thurs afternoon through Friday night, since the wedding we’re attending is on Saturday and we fly out Sunday morning). We’ll be staying at a hotel right in the city, so anything we do would have to be accessible by public transportation. Let me know if there are any must-sees on your list!

  • Reply Lisa @ Lisa the Vegetarian October 1, 2012 at 11:57 am

    I actually did the same thing with my photos last December for a photo project I was creating for my parents at Christmas. I had SO MANY albums of pictures I had taken when I was a kid/teen and the process took quite a while, but it was incredibly rewarding. It’s comforting to know that I have those pics in digital form in case anything ever happens to the originals (which I’m also not ready to part with!).

    • Reply Naturally Minimalist October 1, 2012 at 6:08 pm

      I was definitely glad to get it done! At least if you’re still holding onto the physical copies you can access them much more easily now in digital form. 🙂

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