• Claire Gell

Making memories

Eddy's mum bought me this notebook a while before our 2017 trip, it says "Second star to the right and straight on till morning!" on the front. Some time before our holiday I found it and knew it would be perfect to turn into a journal of mine and Eddy's first Walt Disney World holiday together. I also love videoing bits of our lives and adventures, no matter how big or small, on my little video camera, so I also edited together a film of the footage I recorded while we were there. You can capture so much more of a moment with video!

One of the brilliant things about Walt Disney World is that they have a huge team of cast members called Photopass photographers. They are located all around the parks, especially at the most popular photo spots. They're there waiting and ready to take your photos so that you don't have to fight with your own camera to try and get yourself and your party in the same photo as well as whatever it is you're standing in front of! If you're from the UK your Disney tickets will almost always include "memory maker", which means that you get all these professionally-taken photos for free. It also means you get all of your on-ride photos for free. And, as nice as it is to just have these photos in a digital file somewhere on my laptop, I really enjoy making proper albums or journals with the photos, so I can add notes about what we were doing in the photo or what happened that day. That way when I look back on these memories in the future, I'll remember even more about them.

My absolute favourite way to record memories, though, is through film. My dad often recorded holidays or day trips we went on with his video camera and I was always asking if I could have a go at doing the filming. I've watched back the videos of our first two family Disney holidays so many times that I can basically speak along with what anyone says. I love how a video can capture so much more about a memory than a photo can.

If we're ever on holiday now or at an event, I'll probably have my little video camera with me. I do always try to make sure that I actually LOOK at what's happening, though, rather than only through the camera screen. I think it's really important to make sure you strike a nice balance between enjoying the actual moment while it's happening and recording parts for looking back on the memories. In this day and age of people feeling a constant impulse to document their experiences we need to try extra hard to consider whether we really need to film or take photos of every little thing – you may end up with millions of photos, but will you look back at them? Find your balance between having a nice amount of photos or videos that you can enjoy looking back at, but not so many that you don't properly experience what was happening in the first place.

My favourite thing to do is edit together upbeat montages. When we finished university I made a DVD for all my housemates of video clips and pictures I'd taken over our two years together, and at the end I did a montage with the Friends theme tune as the song. Our Walt Disney World 2017 trip DVD is over an hour long, but here's the montage I put at the end to the audio from the end of the Wishes fireworks. It's very cheesy, but I do love cheese.

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