I get a lot of people asking me how I organize and store my pictures so I'm sharing my SYSTEM with you.
1. Periodically I will remove my SD card from my camera and insert it into my laptop. I choose to move my picture this way because I think it is easier than using the cable and software provided by my camera company.
2. On my computer I create a folder titled with the year, for example 2010, and I create a new folder for each year.
3. I then create a folder for each event, always titling it with first the month and year and then a description. For example, 03-10 Spring Break. This ensures that my pictures will for the most part be in chronological order.
4. I move the pictures off the card onto my laptop one event at a time. I simply go to the directory that shows what's on the card and select the pictures I want to move. Then I drag and drop those pictures into the new folder I just created for them.
5. I only print pictures when I am ready to scrapbook them and then I only print a very manageable number of pictures. No reason to print 2 years at once since I can't possibly get to them all in a reasonable time.
6. Each year in January or February I take all of the pictures in the previous year folder and copy them onto a CD. Only once has an entire year not fit on a CD (but we took 3 big vacations that year). I just did a disc 1 and disc 2.
7. If I accidentally print more pictures that I end up needing to scrapbook I file those chronologically into a photo file box. These can come in handy when they need a quick picture for a school project. I also store my CDs with pictures on them in the same box. However, it isn't a bad idea to keep back up CDs off the premise, in case of fire, like at your office or your mom's house.