This year our family, like many others, has had to cut off a significant part of social interaction out of safety concerns, so we’re hanging out at home with each other more. We’ve spent two or three evenings in a row looking through family photos which everyone really enjoyed.
That’s why I wanted to keep this nostalgia for as long as possible and also make good use of this free time with my husband and kids. We decided to make a family project based on our family photos and create our very own photo calendar.
Save Some Money
Actually the idea isn’t completely new for us, I’ve already had an experience of ordering personalised calendars and gifting them as momentos at a traditional family reunion. I printed them at Vistaprint and Shutterfly. The end products were good quality, but all in all I found it to be a bit expensive to print calendars for such a big family as ours.
So this year we’ve purchased a nice printer and it was more cost-effective to use it than go for any side printing services. I stumbled upon a calendar making software that was easy to work with. So it felt like I had the upper hand to realise the calendar project at home.
Dive in for the Photos
Our starting point was picking a calendar theme. First we sorted photos into categories: the pictures that included our pets, the ones that we had taken during sport activities and so on. Finally, the largest category turned out to be the holidays. The photos from the kids’ birthdays were especially colourful and emotional, we had no idea on how to choose just a few. So we decided to pick a spiral-bound calendar that allows you to pack in the calendar as many photos as you wish.
Next we picked a template. It was an important choice that would determine the general look of our calendar, luckily the gallery of the software has a wide range of templates. Then we edited birthday photos into corresponding months. Luckily for this project there are no coincidences so each of us got a themed page. Then we examined the photos from other holiday categories to use them for the design of the months that had no birthday celebrations.
Discuss and Compromise
Everything went smoothly until we reached October and got some hot debates over Halloween. Thankfully while my son was stubbornly insisting on his choice my daughter found that the software has a great option to insert a collage into a calendar, so we just stuck in it every photo in costume they liked.
As for the captions we agreed to keep it simple, like where and when the photo was taken. I edited the text into the pictures in a couple of minutes.
Remind about Important Dates
Aside from the main photo for every month we also decided to add a miniature for each birthday and holiday slot. The kids picked their favourite portrait shots for their birthdays, my husband picked the one for mine and I picked the one for his. We also made cute reminders about cousins, grandparents and other members of our big family and inserted their photos into the respective date slots. Then we marked a couple of important dates for our family including our wedding anniversary.
When all this family customisation was finished I turned to public holidays that every calendar should include. I ticked in all national holidays such as Christmas, Mother’s and Father’s Day with one click.
When all the editing was done everyone gave a final look at the finished product, and we printed it. One great advantage of such a DIY calendar is that you don’t have to wait for a final product, you get it right away from your printer.
Enjoy Your Work
This year our family reunion was postponed to an unknown date because of the current pandemic. Yet we managed to stay connected and the calendars that we sent to all our relatives helped us to make them feel loved. Another great side of this DIY project is that we had great quality time together. Everyone felt creative and productive and had a chance to remember all the precious moments we’d spent together. I’m sure you’ll enjoy making a photo calendar too – just give it a try!