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The Cheapest and Easiest Way to Store Family Photos

  January 25

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store family photosI was never very careful about saving and storing online photos until I had kids.

Yep, in the past, I was one of those people who had computers die on me with no backups, and I’ve lost photos of trips before. It was always disappointing in the moment, but it never affected me in a major way.

However, once I had my children, I became obsessed with the idea of keeping their pictures safe.

I have over 16,000 photos on my computer, and I have them backed up in three different ways! That might sound like overkill to you, but their birth was such a significant and special time for my family, and it was also such a blur!

Once my twins were born, I knew I would enjoy looking back at how far my kids have come, especially from their early NICU days.

So what got me on this crazy photo storage kick? Well, I once read a post about how a family lost all of their digital files in a house fire. They’d dutifully backed up their photos to a hard drive, but the hard drive burned in the fire.

Since I’ve experienced natural disasters before, I wanted my family photos to be protected even more than just putting them on an external hard drive (because I’ve done that before and the hard drive got old and stopped working!)

So, I decided to pay $5 a month to have my entire computer backed up every single day with BackBlaze. Then, I paid $2.99 a month for my iCloud to have some major extra storage so my phone with my one million photos on it always had backup space.

But, do you know the third way I back up my photos? It’s actually the most surprising way I found to back up my pictures and it’s 100% free!

My secret photo storage tool is Shutterfly.

I’ve been using Shutterfly for years and years now. I’ve used their company to create almost every Christmas card, photo gifts, the canvas prints of my wedding that hang in my room, and I just ordered some stationary from them. They really do have everything, and photo gifts are truly some of the most amazing gifts you can give the grandparents!!

Amazingly, Shutterfly has no limit on the amount of photos you can upload to their site for free. I currently have over 1,000 of my favorite photos stored in there. And the great part is that I can add to it every month so that by the end of the year I have lots of favorite photos to choose from when it’s time to make some photo gifts.

Another thing I love to do with my photos is actually get prints created (crazy talk right?!) I find that in our digital society, we rarely take the time to print out our favorite photos. It’s always such a hassle to find printer paper, etc., which is why I’m pretty excited about Shutterfly’s new app. I downloaded the Shutterfly app on my iPhone and not only does it sync and pull pictures from my iPhone, but for a limited time you can order as many prints as you want through the app for freeeeeee!!!! (You do have to pay for shipping!)

Here is the link to download the app on the iPhone, Android, or iPad.

I honestly think you can never have enough photos, photo storage, or prints, so those are the three main ways that I’ve found to keep my images safe. Plus, all three ways I back up pictures are easy and super cheap.

Do you have online backup for your photos? Do you use a different method than the ones I described above?
store family photos


[This post was brought to you by our partner, Shutterfly. We are very particular about the brands we work with in our business, and Shutterfly has been one of those brands for over four years. All opinions are my own. Shutterfly free prints only available for a limited time.]


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18 responses to “The Cheapest and Easiest Way to Store Family Photos

  1. Nope I don’t backup my computer either. I’m childless (haha, I’m noticing a pattern). I should probably start backing up my crap. =)

  2. I love Shutterfly! I order all kinds of things there – from Christmas cards to blown up pictures on Canvas. Good prices and they almost always have coupons or coupon codes.

  3. Google photos now has an app that automatically backs up and organizes all photos from your phone and computers. We’ve found this super helpful. It even allows you to search by a person’s name or object name. And it’s free!

  4. I’ve heard of Shutterfly, but I have yet to use it. We have a ton of images on our computer at home though which could potentially become a mess so backing up those files would be great.

  5. Yes, when you have little ones…this is something that you think about. My wife was devastated when her iPhone was stolen and many of her photos of our little one were gone. iCloud for some reason didn’t back up any pictures (maybe a few), and even if it did, she had gone over capacity. I use Flickr the same way you use Shutterfly. I also save some on an external hard drive though sometimes I wonder if those can malfunction much like laptops.

  6. We almost never take pictures. I guess because we don’t have cell phones with us? Or just because we don’t. Who knows? Though Tim has several of our cat being either goofy or adorable. But I make sure he doesn’t waylay everyone with them. Because he will.

    I’ve definitely heard good things about Shutterfly. I use Photobucket, but I don’t think that has the print options that Shutterfly does. Not to mention that Shutterfly is pretty much always having a good sale of some sort — and it’s on cash back sites!

  7. All photos of my family are uploaded to Shutterfly. I think I have more than 5,000 photos and I am planning to gather all of my photos more to upload it to Shutterfly. It’s better to do it this way, just in case something bad happens.

  8. Oh my! 16,000 photos! How long did it take you to upload it to Shutterfly? I am planning to upload my photos as well. I have more than 12,000 photos.

  9. This is a great tip Cat! I’d never thought of using Shutterfly for storage. We used them to create photo albums only. We have pics on our computer, on an external hard drive and are using iDrive to back up our entire computer. But I agree you can’t be too careful when it comes to those precious family pics. I’ll be forwarding this post to my wife…she loves Shutterfly! Thanks!

  10. Shutterfly is amazing! I don’t want to miss any special memories so I’m going to download it, too. Thanks Shutterfly! Thanks Catherine!

  11. Great tips! On more than one occasion, I’ve thought about shutting down my Facebook account, but every time the thing that stops me is the years of photos on it and the fact that they’re not backed up anywhere else. If the main Facebook server went down, I suspect a lot of us would be outta luck with our old photos.

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