Managing Personal Memories at the Alexandria Branch with Tabitha O’Connor
The new year is the perfect time to organize photos, whether digital or physical.
You can do just that at the Alexandria Branch this January. Managing Personal Memories, a three-part series, will take place on Thursdays from 11:30 am-1 pm starting Jan. 11 and ending Jan. 25.
The series will give patrons the chance to learn from Tabitha O’Connor, who has over 20 years of experience as a personal memory manager via her business For Always. Each date builds upon the other; it’s recommended to attend all three. We caught up with O’Connor ahead of the programs to talk about her experience, the series and more.
“A lot of people have a massive collection of printed photos, old media and their current digital collection,” said O’Connor. “And most have gotten to a point where they’re overwhelmed with it. They’re not sure what to do.”
That quandary is the basis for Managing Personal Memories. According to O’Connor, the series will help attendees set a photo management plan in place.
As far as series structure, O’Connor explained that the first session on Jan. 11 will focus on what goes into saving their digital and physical collections. The next date, Jan. 18, will move into organizing tips. And the last class on Jan. 25 will focus on how to share with family and friends.
The work started from first making custom scrapbooks for people. As digital has taken over, her work has steered toward helping people create manageable digital collections. Based in Anderson Township, O’Connor is also a legal assistant and a homeschool mom.
“(Organizing photos) is definitely something where people feel like they don’t have a lot of time,” said O’Connor. “I say, you don’t have time not to do it because, unfortunately, time isn’t on our side. That’s been my personal experience.”
For example, when her biological grandmother’s home was taken out by Hurricane Sandy, they lost her photo slides. When stories from ancestors are lost, so is their history, which help inform who we are, according to O’Connor.
“It’s super important to have those stories preserved for the future. Otherwise, if you don’t learn your history, then you’re doomed to repeat it,” said O’Connor. “We’re able to learn from our past in the same way by looking at our photos, going through memories and having all that stored together.”
During the free series, O’Connor will teach attendees all about cloud storage, photo management plans, organization tips and more.
Beyond photos, O’Connor’s business helps others preserve their personal history and memories. One point of feedback O’Connor often receives is that she’s able to help clients take an overwhelming task and break it down into smaller portions.
“I recently had a client have a cassette tape digitized,” recalled O’Connor. “It was originally recorded in the ‘70s… They re-recorded it in the ‘90s on cassette tape. It was her great grandmother reciting poetry.”
O’Connor continued on to say that she’s fortunate enough to have clients who are willing to invite her into their homes to sit with them and watch or listen to movies, recordings and more.
“When you’re there to experience that with them, there’s nothing else like it,” said O’Connor. “It’s amazing.”
Registration is required.