Thanks to the advent of the Internet, the world has gotten much smaller, and an online baby book is the ideal way to share photos of your precious little one with loved ones from far and near.
What Is an Online Baby Book?
An online baby book is your own personal space on the Web-- a place to share photos and videos of your little bundle of joy. Some baby websites also have space for a personal blog, diary, or journal. Depending on the site, some are password-protected for extra safety.
What You Need
There are a few things you'll need to create a baby website:
- Computer or access to a computer
- Internet access
- Baby photos, either on a digital camera, photo CD, or print
- Way to get the photos online-- digital camera, video camera, scanner, or a photo CD. If you have none of the above, you can take print photos to a copy shop, photo shop, or some drugstores. The photo techs can place your prints on a CD.
- Web design software or a premade template
Creating a Baby Book Online
While you can create your baby book from scratch, buy your own domain name, find a hosting company, and launch your own site, the fastest and easiest way to make an online baby book is to go to the experts. There are many companies specializing in online baby books. These offer premade, customizable book templates. Simply add your own photos and text, and you're ready to go. Prices range from free to hundreds of dollars. Features and customization options, naturally, vary depending on price. There are many, many companies to choose from, but here are a few LoveToKnow Baby favorites.
Baby Sites offers a basic site free of charge. Since the company has to make money somewhere, free sites do have advertisements, but these are not overly obtrusive. You can choose from over 25 templates, with themes including Bees, Sports, Sunflowers, Dinosaurs, and holidays. All sites include the following fun options:
- Growth charts
- Baby albums
- Family albums
- Space for up to 100 photos
If you need to add more photos or you desire more options, there is a "Premium Site" offered for less than $50 per year. With the premium site, you get the following additional features:
- Video sharing
- No ads
- Upgraded themes
- Multiple children/family sites
- Option to order prints
If speed and ease-of-use are of utmost importance, you might want to try Tot Sites, a company that promises to have you up and running in under five minutes. This site offers a free online journal in your choice of fresh, fun designs, including:
- Rain Forest
This site's blog-like interface allows you to update daily to keep family and friends up-to-date on all of your cutie pie's progress and milestones. Other fun features include growth charts, polls, guestbook, gift registries, and fun facts.
Like many other baby sites, you do have the option of upgrading to a premium membership for added features and more options.
Baby Jelly Beans
Baby Jelly Beans is not free, but it does offer a 30-day free trial. With a price tag of just under $10 per month, Baby Jelly Beans is definitely more expensive than some of the other companies, but its easy interface, creative themes, and fun options make it worth a look. All templates feature a polished, well-put-together look, with themes including:
- Little Angel in Blue
- Cool Beans
- Journey East
- Secret Garden
- At the Zoo
- At the Movies
Another thing that sets this company apart is it's option of an online adoption baby book, which includes pages such as "Journey To...," "Adoption Journal," and "Homecoming".