What Should I Do With My Deceased Parents' Photo Albums? | Ask the Rev. | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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What Should I Do With My Deceased Parents' Photo Albums?


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Dear Reverend,

Spending so much time at home during lockdown has caused me to go on a decluttering kick. I came across a big box full of photo albums that belonged to my deceased parents — mostly scenic photographs from trips they took. I don't really want to keep them, but I can't bring myself to throw them away. What should I do with them?

Shutterbugged (female, 51)

Dear Shutterbugged,

I'm ridiculously sentimental, so I feel your pain.

Here's what I would do. Look through the albums and take out any photos of your parents that you want to keep. Take another fast pass through them and pull out anything that grabs your heart. Don't think about it too hard, or you'll get bogged down. Put everything into one album as documentation of your parents' adventures.

As for the remaining photos, is there anyone in your family who might be interested in them? Know anybody who does collage? If not, send those albums on their own adventure and donate them to a thrift store. They might just turn into the treasure someone didn't know they were looking for.

I'm fairly certain those who have gone on to the other side are no longer concerned with the worldly goods they've left behind. They've got more important things to do. Hang on to anything that holds special memories for you. If the only reason you're keeping something is because it belonged to someone who passed, it's time for it to go. You won't be hurting their feelings.

Good luck and God bless,

The Reverend

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