October 18, 2015

Repairing the potholes in memory lane

When the kids were little we had a video camera. It was one of the first Sony Handicams and it recorded on 8mm tape. Sometime in the late 1990s I spent hours editing these tapes into just one VHS tape for My wife for Christmas, or Mother's Day or her birthday. I cannot remember, but I made the tape, Okay? Anyway, the camera died years time ago, but the original tapes remain. Recently the VHS greatest hits tape resurfaced. I will now digress.

My wife is a pack rat, but is in remission. When we moved to this not so top secret location she threw away, gave away and sold a huge amount of stuff. I took the opportunity to rid us of things I felt we no longer needed that she had previously insisted we keep. One of the items I decided was unworthy of going to the new home was our no longer used VHS player. With the exception of the Disney titles, we had rid ourselves of our large VHS collection and replaced the movies with DVDs and Blueray discs. So, to summarize, we have these home movies of the kids, but we cannot play them. When I was at the oldest boy's house a few weeks ago he mentioned he still had his VHS player. He let me borrow it.

Back to yesterday. After running the head cleaner tape through a half dozen times I was able to make the old VHS greatest hits tape play. I intended to just watch a few minutes, but the sight of my children transported back in time more than twenty years mesmerized me. I called in the wife and we watched the whole thing. While the tape focused primarily on the kids, there were glimpses of my long-dead grandpa, mother-in-law and grandma. I laughed, I cried, I was reminded of stuff I had long forgotten. I saw my youngest the day he was born, saw him crawl and walk. I saw my two oldest grow up again right before my eyes.

We have to get all of those tapes copied over to disc or digital.


hey teacher... said...

Copy it onto add and save the DVDs to a thumbdrive or portable hard drive. Do it now before you forget.

Ed Bonderenka said...

E-mail me.
I'll do it free.
Or pay a service.
I bought a VHS to DVD unit for $150 or so.
I also burn video off the cable DVR with it.

Dan O. said...

Just bought a device from Amazon for $20 to record VHS to computer. RCA jacks or S-video to USB 2.0. Only at the mercy of the quality of the VCR playback.

Dan O. said...

Here's the link, Joe: TOTMC Video Converter Also got 50 Verbatim DVD-R for like 9.95.

Joe said...

Thanks guys. If we can't get the 8mm and Super8 tapes copied then I will at least do the single VHS tape.

Dan O. said...

Joe, several years ago I used homemoviedepot.com to convert all of my dad's 8mm to dvd. It was easy and they also do Super 8 & VHS. Again, the quality is entirely at the mercy of the source. It was nice because we ordered extra copies so everyone in the family could have their own.

Joe said...

Thanks Dan

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