Islander Carey Moncaster launches Lifolio, a modern system for preserving family memories

September 18, 2016 | by Erin Sirianni

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To put it simply, Mercer Island resident Carey Moncaster cares what happens to a family photograph – whether a digital iPhone photo or an actual print photograph, perhaps carefully stored but forgotten in an album or photo box.

Moncaster has dedicated her education and career to the art of historical archives. Influenced by her grandmother Marion Post Wolcott, a renowned, pioneer documentary photographer in the 1930s, Moncaster focused her studies in historiography (the curation of history) at Stanford University. She also worked at Stanford as a curriculum developer for the Stanford Program on International and Cross-Cultural Education and the Executive Director of Pacific Village Institute. For decades, she professionally framed ideas, events, experiences, and multimedia documentation in ways that shed light on culture, community, global trends, and individual life stories.

lifolio-2Now Moncaster is using her experience and education toward helping you preserve your family photos and history. Together with her husband Ian Moncaster and a full Seattle tech team, she has just launched Lifolio, a new system – think digital scrapbook meets Facebook – to help parents organize all different forms of media (not just photos) into a life portfolio thereby capturing the stories of family and kids’ lives.

“I think many of us are overwhelmed about how to organize and manage all the photos we take of our kids and what to do with the artwork and hand-written notes and special assignments that come home from school,” Moncaster said. “The photos might get downloaded to a computer but then forgotten on a hard drive. We all have plastic bins filled with school work, but they sit forgotten in storage.”

This is why Moncaster has created Lifolio.

“Instead of losing life memories amid mass storage, Lifolio enables both parents and kids to access and enjoy them in the present and for generations to come,” she said.

Moncaster designed Lifolio recognizing that old-school scrapbooks are outmoded and that busy parents need a mobile system that is simple to use in-the-moment yet designed with an entire lifetime and family legacy in mind. The result is a digital media archive that captures memories in heirloom quality and provides a customizable framework for organizing day-to-day moments (photos, art, etc.) into life chapters.

“Whereas on Facebook people post happy highlights about their kids, Lifolio is designed for parents to post real life moments and history for their kids,” Moncaster said. “Parents can create a life timeline for their children, sharing in a secure social network while ensuring privacy.”

Lifolio is a free website with an iPhone app on its way. If you like Lifolio’s Facebook page, you can follow updates and receive quick prompts to help you get started in a fun and relevant way. Lifolio just had a back-to-school campaign to encourage parents to post that “First Day of School” photo on a timeline for their kids so that it was not lost in their phones or posted to Facebook where their kids won’t see it.

“It just takes one post to get started. Most parents are already saving all sorts of media, they just need an easy place to put it all together for the sake of their kids. Kids love looking at their Lifolios, and they do better when they have a sense of self, family, community and history,” Moncaster said.

Learn more about Lifolio at