Three weeks of an epic summer adventure in Europe are now organized into a lovely Blurb photo book. I enhanced each page with a little narrative and collaged photos. I had the freedom to design the book to my liking through a variety of page template options. It’s really beautiful.

And, the book was completed within two weeks of landing back at home. This is definitely a personal record for me. My new goal going forward is to capture vacation adventures in a Blurb book within the same time frame.

Why? Because what I know now will make the process so much easier.

See why I prefer Blurb books for organizing travel and other memories. I've been using it for years.

It’s Not My First Blurb Book

This actually isn’t my first Blurb book. One night, a few years ago, I heavily researched which photo book service would best fit my needs. I wanted freedom to include as many photos as I saw fit along with the option to type in more than a few sentences here and there. I decided on Blurb.

During this time, my father was dying and I began to contemplate my own mortality. The disorganization of my photo files weighed heavily on my mind. Without me, my daughter and husband would never find them all. And would they organize them? It would be too hard. And what about all of the stories that pair with each life event?

In an emotional panic, I tackled the first two years of my daughter’s life which were spent in Hong Kong. Being born there plays a bit role in her self-identity and I wanted to capture our adventures there. We lived in a beautiful hotel, I pushed her up the hills of Central and she learned Mandarin before English. Things like this.

The book is almost 200 pages long and while I’m pleased to have it done, I was—and still am—tremendously surprised by the peace of mind I feel knowing it exists.

My Blurb password is included with our important documents. This book, like others, is still in my account and ready to be printed again on a moment’s notice should the original become lost or damaged.

I’m telling you this, because capturing adventure and special moments in a photo book have impact that transcends far beyond the pages.

How I Use Blurb Now

A peek inside a new Blurb book made from travel photos. Here, I give a full review of how I did it.

We started traveling again after my dad passed. My photo files have again accumulated and it’s time to make more books.

However, until I looked into making my Europe book, I didn’t realize there was one feature I unintentionally ignored during the three or so years that I’ve been using Lightroom to edit photos.

You can create books in Lightroom and send them directly to Blurb with one click. 

Use Lightroom to upload books directly to Blurb.

I never bothered to dive into the Lightroom “Book” tab because there is so much to know about Lightroom as it is. What a mistake.

Make a collection in your Lightroom sidebar. Drop in any photos you’re considering using in a book. When it’s time to make the book, drag and drop the ones you like into a page template. Type text into designated areas. It’s possible to edit the photos before or after placing them into the collection as well as while working on the book. So easy.

Lightroom also shows the cost of the book based on the paper chosen and cover wrap. And, if you’re not sure what kind of paper to use, order a swatch kit. The cost is $7.95 which is then credited toward the cost of your book.

Blurb book review - order a paper swatch kit

Tips for Using Lightroom with Blurb

Completely excited by this option, I watched one six minute how-to video on and dove right into building my book with Lightroom. But, then I discovered a great hour-long tutorial on, a photography site that I have a membership to. I suggest you either start with a short book to get the hang of how it works or watch a more in-depth video for a longer project. This will help you better understand the process and really maximize the bookmaking process.

A review of Blurb books. I chose a large landscape book with a hardcover wrap and love it!

When working on the book in Lightroom, be sure to select the text safe and page bleed guides which will display where the margins are so that everything prints perfectly.

You may also use Adobe InDesign.

More Summer Memories to Archive

A review of Blurb books. I chose a large landscape book with a hardcover wrap and love it!

My next book is about the really epic family vacation to Grand Cayman we took last week. It will be full of crystal clear and blue Caribbean water, swimming horses, tropical fish and more.

What memories would your summer photo book include?
(Another cool option is to take vacation photos and make a nice travel magazine using Blurb! Follow the hashtag #CaptureAdventure for more inspiration.)
See why I prefer Blurb books for organizing travel and other memories. I've been using it for years.
Katie Dillon headshot

Katie Dillon is the managing editor of La Jolla Mom. She helps readers plan San Diego vacations through her hotel expertise (that stems from living in a Four Seasons hotel) and local connections. Readers have access to exclusive discounts on theme park tickets (like Disneyland and San Diego Zoo) and perks at luxury hotels worldwide through her. She also shares insider tips for visiting major cities worldwide like Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Shanghai that her family has either lived in or visits regularly (or both).

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  1. I so agree with you that making photo books from your digital pictures is a wonderful way of making them accessible. Lying in a file on your computer, they are never watched. I did a book from a trip I did with two of my kids visiting the third one (who was working abroad at the time), and the small adventures we had there. It’s lovely to have, from tome to time I look in it and can cherish the moments again. I want to do many more, but just haven’t gotten around to it. When reading your post however, I feel a new determination to kget on with it. It doesn’t have to be that time consuming, but gives many happy moments when done.

    Thank you!

  2. Thanks for the motivation. Creating photo books out of my old photos was one of those goals I just have not gotten around to.

    I will definitely check out Blurb!