As part of an ongoing project, this weekend I've been scanning photos almost non-stop--five decades' worth since yesterday morning. I just finished the '90s.
What a wonderful trip down memory lane. These particular decades included the ones in which my children and grandchildren were born. As I arranged their pictures in groups on the scanner screen, I watched them grow up all over again.
I spent some time today with beloved family members who have since passed on and with others who live so far across the country I may never see them again. Every familiar face brought me joy.
I visited houses where we used to live, rooms where we shared happy times and a couple of hard ones, furniture that seemed like a good idea at the time, and a few items that have traveled with me across the miles and the years.
I sat on the Missouri grass with Wiggles, the family dog of my childhood, and on a Louisiana hearth with our '80s dog, Radar. I lingered over puppy pictures of Butch and Kadi and was reminded once again how much love they've brought into my life.
I watched fashions and hairstyles change. Automobile shapes went from boxy to aerodynamic, and bare tree branches turned green, then lost their leaves again. The photos themselves changed, too, from sepia to black and white to color, with a wide variation in quality depending on the camera and film that were used.
One more weekend should be enough to finish the scanning, then I'll begin cropping the scanned groups into individual photos, labeling each one as I go. When that's done, I'll save everything to DVDs and distribute enough copies to ensure that someone, somewhere, will have a backup copy if something should happen to the originals.
It's a laborious process, but it's a labor of love.