CLTT Episode #10- How To Make Family Video Slideshows

Posted on Oct 20, 2015 | 0 comments


Photo Credit – Sam Lytle

Making video slideshows of pictures may not be as popular as it was 5-10 years ago but it is still a powerful way to capture stories and history in a creative and fun way. With the smartphones, tablets and cameras we all carry around now it is even easier to get a good group of pictures with which to make a great video from. Additionally, the apps available on these devices as well as computers and laptops make it possible for almost anyone with any level of expertise to make video slideshows.

For 6 years I made video slideshows for my extended family each year before Christmas. It was a ton of fun to do and especially to enjoy together when it was all done. And now that the videos have had time to age they are even more precious to all of us.

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Lessons Learned During the Penzu Upgrade

Posted on Oct 1, 2015 | 0 comments

Important Note about Apps that are Upgrading.

If you have been a part of the Easy Journaling community for a while you have probably seen a post or two about the most popular online journal, Penzu. Not writing about it would be similar to a tech blog not writing about Apple — possible but not realistic.

This journaling service offers many features for free and even more for $19/year including syncing Penzu on Android and iPhone. A year ago, we posted a personal review on the subject titled Why I’m Switching to Penzu. In short, the author of the article was tired of Wonderful Days for the iPhone and wanted the best option available. Being the world’s digital journaling guru, we wanted experience with the best of the best! So we made the switch, and documented results.

It was clear from the beginning that it was the right decision. The author of the review basked in the magnificence of feature overload for months. You are able to customize to your heart’s desire (including notebook titles, colors, font type and size), write from a keyboard or touchscreen and sleep in the comfort of knowing that your journal was backed up, password protected and encrypted. Maybe overkill, but nice nonetheless!

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CLTT Episode #8- The Top 5 Android Journals

Posted on Jun 10, 2015 | 0 comments

About 8 months ago I switched from team iPhone to team Android. While both operating systems are fantastic in their own right, I feel that Android has passed Apple in many aspects that are important to me and that is why I use a Galaxy S3 in my daily life.

This episode of the Capturing Life Through Technology covers the 5 best journal applications for Android. If you have been reading Easy Journaling for a while you won’t be surprised by number one, which is the journal I have been using for about 5 months (it is fantastic). Listen to the end to see what app it is!

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CLTT Episode #6- Modern Journaling- Part 1

Posted on May 27, 2015 | 0 comments

Modern Journaling Kindle2Episodes 6 and 7 of the Capturing Life Through Technology Podcast are going to be a little different and (hopefully) a little special. Soon after I finished Modern Journaling in late 2011 I recorded an audiobook version and sold it along side the PDF for about a year. Eventually Easy Journaling went through a redesign and I got a new computer and the Modern Journaling mp3 got lost somehow in the shuffle. Okay, it wasn’t lost but I was having a hard time finding it.

Fast forward to about a week ago and I found a flash drive I had been looking for. Luckily it had a fresh copy of the Modern Journaling audiobook and I was left with the decision as to how it would be most beneficial to you, oh Easy Journaling reader. I thought about just making it available for download on the website for free, but ultimately decided against it as my web host would probably frown at a 40 MB file being downloaded over and over. The next best option was to just release it as a podcast (podcast hosting is separate and set up for multiple large downloads). Thus I decided it to release it as a podcast and since it was too long for one, I am splitting it up into two. 

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CLTT Episode #4- Using Facebook the Right Way

Posted on May 14, 2015 | 0 comments

Photo Credit

Photo Credit

Perhaps the number way that the world is capturing their life today is through a little thing called Facebook. Over a billion humans are now posting status updates, sharing (usually annoying) cat pictures, pictures and much more. Are you one of them? More importantly, are you using Facebook the right way?

In episode #4 of the Capturing Life Through Technology podcast I show you step by step how to take control of your Facebook account by creating lists and checking the settings on a regular basis. 

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CLTT Episode #2- 10 Ways I Am Capturing My Life Using Technology

Posted on Feb 26, 2015 | 0 comments

Photo Credit -

Photo Credit –

There are a plethora of ways to capture your life using technology. Some people purposely use as many as possible, and others avoid it! But I’m sure you are using many of them, whether you know it or not. In episode #2 of the CLTT podcast Sam shares 10 ways that he is currently capturing (and sharing) his life using technology.

Did I miss something or do you have some suggestions or ideas of your own? Please add them in the comments below!

Also, this podcast is now available on iTunes! Please subscribe by clicking on the link below:

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CLTT Episode #1: Introduction and My Picture Process

Posted on Feb 19, 2015 | 0 comments

Capturing Life Through Technology

Finally, the Capturing Life Through Technology Podcast is updated and restored!

As mentioned in a previous post, there are two broad reasons to keep a journal: improving your life or capturing your life. As I indicated, this site tends to be more passionate about the latter, and we feel there just isn’t enough succinct information on the best ways to capture your life… using technology.

This is why we are re-releasing this podcast series. It is not exclusively focused on journaling. As you will learn in this first episode, CLTT will include topics such as: amateur photography, picture/video storage and backup, social media, analog to digital conversion (VHS to DVD anyone?), digitizing printed materials (scanning scrapbooks…), digital journaling and much more.

Your feedback is very valuable in this process. I am a podcast junkie when it comes to listening to them, but I’m still learning the best ways to create them. Be patient with us, as we figure out how to make this a dynamite show, with updated content. The first few episodes are re-releases of prior conversations with our founder, but we have many more things lined up, soon to come.

To listen, click the Play > button above this post, or you can actually subscribe to it using iTunes or other podcast catcher software.

The show notes are below and please leave your feedback and questions in the comments.

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What Happens When You Miss A Month of Journaling?

Posted on Nov 17, 2013 | 0 comments

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Photo Credit –

Although I’m probably an above-average journal keeper, I never pretend to be perfect. I confess that I only score a 4 out of 5 on my own digital journaling scale. I believe in it and I try to faithfully keep up with it, but I could still do better.

Well, today I have some more confessions to share.

I basically missed the month of October with my journaling.

Oh, and most of September as well. 

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Why You Should Keep a Gratitude Journal

Posted on Oct 31, 2013 | 0 comments


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In today’s world, it can be very easy to focus on the things we don’t have rather than pay thanks to the things that we do have. Indeed, that’s when keeping a gratitude journal comes in to play. Not only does it take the focus off our unnecessary wants, it gives us a reason to reflect on all of the good things in our lives. And you shouldn’t limit the project to just yourself. Instead, involve the whole family and let the gratitude journal your children keep become a way to show them what is truly important in their lives.

Keeping a gratitude journal makes it easier to focus on priorities. It shows us how our past wants were achieved or dismissed and it gives us an idea of what areas of our lives are good and which areas need improvement. For example, we may have created a good career, but haven’t kept the friends from our past as close as we would have liked to. The gratitude journal can help us find a way to reconnect with our old gang and find ways to let them know how much that part of your life meant to you.

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Six Tips for Better Journal Entries

Posted on Oct 29, 2013 | 0 comments

Journal - Bev Sykes

Photo Credit – Bev Sykes

Journaling regularly is a very satisfying act.  It’s the type of pastime with numerous benefits.  Not only does journaling give you a private place to record your thoughts, it gives you the opportunity to revisit different times in your life and reflect upon the growth and progress you have made as a person.

Your journal can enhance the quality of your life, help you pinpoint your dreams and aspirations, and strengthen the relationships you have with your family and friends.  So, how can you improve your journaling practice?  What type of things can you do to enhance the quality of your digital journal entries?  Is there a way to make things look, feel, and read better?  Are there any tools you can use to safeguard your most private thoughts?

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Thoughtree for iPhone (iOS 7)

Posted on Sep 22, 2013 | 0 comments

photo 1You may have read on, our mid-summer review of Thoughtree (the Beta) but I’m pleased to reevaluate my recommendation now that it has hit the iTunes App Store, all tweaked and tuned for iOS 7 and free for the taking.

Developer, Jude Abeler, offers journalers his “personal thought network” for practical productivity, with a classic user interface in black, white and green. Its charming tree logo reminded me of my children’s’ book collection, which included The Giving Tree. Both are delightfully unfussy.

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10 of Today’s Most Famous Journalers

Posted on Aug 31, 2013 | 0 comments

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Ten of the Most Creative Journal Keepers

When it comes to keeping a journal, these people are pros.  In fact, there’s a lot that can be learned from them about the process.  With modern technology being what it is, it’s easier to share, engage, and even keep journals.  In fact, the digital journal is what we promote heavily here.

Some of the most creative journal keepers of all time include:

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Private Diary for Android – A Complete Journaling Package

Posted on Aug 19, 2013 | 0 comments

pd2The handheld version of Private Diary along with its online version make quite a complete journaling package that will suit most anyone’s journaling needs. Let’s take a look at both and see how they may fit into your daily journaling life.

The handheld version has most of the necessary features you would expect to find in most top of the line journaling apps. These include a timeline view, calendar view, photo capability from within the app, auto location insertion, tags and categories as well as a host of other features. In addition, the timeline view can be customized as to fonts and color background. It has an attractive user interface as it stands however two components I wish I could change are the orange color used throughout and also the capability to remove the dotted lines that the developer has used to separate the title, entry, date and tags. The free version that I originally tried didn’t have the dotted lines. As a result, I personally think the free version’s timeline UI is much cleaner looking.

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6 Places To Mine Material For Future Journal Entries (Journal Prompts)

Posted on Aug 17, 2013 | 0 comments

Journaling causes you to push your edges. It has you exploring the confines of your comfort zone. It makes you question things and draw conclusions. It gives insight about the past, identifies areas of improvement, and helps your dreams take flight.

With that being said, if you journal on a regular basis, you’ll find times where you need inspiration for your posts. The creative well may have run dry and you look for things outside yourself to fill it once again. If that is the case, and it certainly will be from time to time, there are a number of different sources that can help you write freely once again.

Here are six places where you can mine material for future journal entries:

  1. The news. What’s going on in the world around you and how does it shape your perception of yourself? What concerns or excites you the most? How do you predict today’s events will shape the future?
    Photo Credit

    Photo Credit

  2. Other people’s blogs. Do you read other people’s blogs regularly? What type of ideas do they bring to the table? Do you agree with what they have to say or do you have a different viewpoint on a matter? Take a complex matter and argue for it and against it. It doesn’t make a difference what your opinion is. Doing an exercise like this helps you see both sides to every story written.
  3. Photographs. Flip through a magazine or glance through a photo gallery online. Select a picture and tell a story about it. What was happening behind the camera when the photo was shot? Who was standing in the background but away from the lens? What did the moment feel like for the subject? Where did it take place? Chances are you’ll get very few of the details correct, but you’ll have a great time picturing the events unfolding right before your eyes as if you were the one taking the photographs.
  4. Past events/old journals. What did you learn from your experiences? How can you prevent making the same mistakes in the future? What moments defined you as a person? Which things do you seek understanding of now? The past offers answers for the future.
    Photo Credit - Wikipedia

    Photo Credit – Wikipedia

  5. Your Facebook feed. What types of posts do you consider thought-provoking? Are there certain types of status updates or photos you respond to most? Did a Facebook friend bring up a valid point in one of his or her posts? How would you respond to what they’ve said? Record it in your journal.
  6. Your children, parents, and grandparents. Our family holds the key to our past, present, and future. Tap into their wealth of knowledge and insight to help create topics for future posts. Although situations may remain fresh in our memory banks today, there will be a time when details blur and conversations are forgotten. Don’t let all the wisdom go away before you document it.

You can draw journaling inspiration from your daily life. Remember that in order to keep subject matter fresh and interesting, you need to think outside the box from time to time and mine material wherever you can find it. This will keep you from becoming bored with journaling and provide you with an influx of subject matter you may have never written about before.

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My Capturing Life Report- June 2013

Posted on Jul 11, 2013 | 0 comments

Photo Credit - Nevil zaveri

Photo Credit – Nevil Zaveri

As you may have heard in the most recent podcast, our family has made some major life decisions recently. These have spiraled us into an exciting direction but has also given us low stability as we have been basically living with family and out of suitcases for a month.

I say this to give context to the type of month that June was; not your typical month. Still, we managed to capture our life significantly along the way and have had some great moments together. This included our big move, several family gatherings and a vacation/reunion in Utah.

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