Organizing Your Memorabilia

One of the most common questions Life Your Way readers ask when we talk about decluttering and organizing is how to organize photos. So, over the next three weeks, we’ll be talking about all things photo-related with a special series from the Association of Personal Photo Organizers!

The following is written by Mikie Smithers:


source: PlayfulLibrarian



Organizing Your Memorabilia

Where is your stash?  You know, that pile or box of stuff that you don’t know what to do with but can’t part with either.  It’s the memorabilia of your life.  It may be certificates from school, concert ticket stubs or the artwork of your two-year-old Picasso.  That field day ribbon or letter from home has just as much meaning in your story as a photo or your birth certificate.

Webster defines memorabilia as:

“things that are remarkable and worthy of remembrance” or “things that stir recollection or are valued or collected for their association with a particular field or interest.”

It’s true, isn’t it?

One glimpse of a card with my grandmother’s signature and I am transported back to her living room sitting on her sofa and enjoying her company.  A paint splattered piece of paper floods me with warm feelings of “crafts” with my baby boy who is now a teen.

Memorabilia Provides a Glimpse of the Past.

Memorabilia collections do more than provide personal benefit for the collector.  Sometimes, they provide a glimpse of the past to future generations.  One of my cherished items is a letter from a one family member to another that was written long before I was born.

The differences in day to day life as described in the letter are interesting.  The similarities bind us together.  How will my future generations react to handwritten correspondence when our world is moving so electronically?

Memorabilia also shows what you treasure.

My daughter can’t decipher what she was trying to write in that note left on my nightstand. But she knows why I have kept it. Because it says, “I love you Mommy” in toddler scribbles.  It was the first note she ever wrote me so it is special.  By hanging on to the note, she sees in a concrete way how she is loved.

Whatever your collection consists of, treasure it.  Safeguard it.  Preserve it.  It contains valuable pieces of your life story.

How do you safeguard and preserve your memorabilia?

Click here for all of the posts in this series.

Mikie Smithers is a wife and mother of two.  She is passionate about helping people enjoy and share their photos and stories.  She is a Personal Photo Organizer and has been assisting others with their photos for over six years.  Mikie is a member of the APPO Association of Personal Photo Organizers.