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|Save your family stories with Saving Memories Forever|
Have you ever been visiting with older family members and while listening to them talk about their youth, war stories or tales about their older relatives, you think to yourself “I really should be recording this!”? Here in the South, events revolve around food. Family reunions, holidays, barbecues and low-country boils. Weddings, showers, and even funerals. Every time we get together, there is going to be some good food and people eating until they can’t leave the table because they are so full! It is almost always in this time when the plates have been scraped clean, most of the young kids have taken off to play with their cousins and there is a lull between the meal and the desserts that the old folks start talking. At least that’s how it always was in my family. Many times I would wish I had a way to capture it and preserve it, but may have not had the equipment to do such on the fly like what I wished for.
All that has changed with the digital age, with cameras that are also video cameras, but also with smart phones enabled with voice recorders. Now you can take your smart phone one step further with the Saving Memories App, available for iPhone and Android.
When first asked by Mosaic Reviews to review this app, I had a little bit of trepidation Not because I didn’t have stories to record myself, but because all the family that I know had stories perfect for this app are gone now. Where was this when I needed it?! One Christmas I bought all my grandparents a tape recording machine with plenty of tapes and big buttons for them to see, with a microphone so they wouldn’t have to lean in too close. Those tapes were never used, and I found that when my Grandad died, all of what I had given him was still in the box! I was so upset, all his WWII stories were gone. How I wish there was an app for that back then!
|My Grandad, the shoe exec that fought in WWII. I wish I had his stories on this app!|
Saving Memories Forever was founded by Harvey and Jane Baker when they realized after spending a long period of time developing a family tree, that there were holes missing…the family story! It was then that they got to work developing this app.
There are two parts to the system, a website and an app for the smartphone. With the app, you record the stories, and in the website you can manage them. There are prompts to get you going if you need them and you can set up different storytellers. You can even share the stories to Facebook or email them, which I think is pretty cool. It is very simple to use and with all kinds of tips and helpful information in both applications, even the youngest kids with the most basic knowledge of asking questions and holding a phone (which starts at about walking age these days, it seems) can be an ‘interviewer’.
They have made it virtually goof proof with a How-To video, manuals, guides, etc. There are educational guides, games, a newsletter and a blog, too.
There are two different subscriptions: Free and Premium. They both have some of the same features, but with the Premium subscription you can have unlimited number of Story Tellers, Story Listeners and Unlimited stories you can hear each day where on the Free version you have limits to each. You also can get a zip file of your stories for free on the Premium subscription, where on the Free subscription that zip file will cost you $12.95. You can decide whether free or fee is right for you here. For me personally, Free is fine, but if I found later I could use the Premium, an upgrade would be simple to do.
I find that there really are so many ways to use this app. Finally have your cousin telling you how to make her pecan pie? Use the app! Have a parent in the military and stationed away from the family for months? He or she could use the app and relay a story and it could be sent home for the kids or other family members! (I love that!)
While I don’t have a lot of use for the app right now, that doesn’t mean I won’t ever. I can be a virtual storyteller and re-tell some of the stories my family members told me over the years. I can add my own recipes, recipes of my grandmother and recipes my husband comes up with (which I need a lot because when he wings it, we often have a hard time remembering what he did and how to recreate it!). I can also talk about my kids. I’m a mom, I love stories about my kids (that they love to hear over and over again), and I also have stories from when I was a kid. So, even though I haven’t got a lot of family members to record, I do have tales to tell!
|My Mom and her aunt, my grandmother’s identical twin sister. They may be gone but I still have their stories!|
I do think this is a great app and I think for some families, it could become invaluable! Go, download the Free version to get started, and start recording!