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Capturing Memories – Making a Time Capsule

October 29, 2012

There are endless ideas of how to capture the past to one day share with future generations.  From paper, to digital, to online archiving and beyond!  When my son was just a few weeks old we created a cement stone with his feet imprints (easier said than done).  We also captured a 3-D version of his foot and hand with a mold and that turned out to be the neatest thus far!  I made a shadow box that has his coming home outfit and other various newborn items.  I’ve also been doing a monthly footprint too and plan to create something from that as well.  However, one of my major ongoing projects has been creating a time capsule of memories which we plan on sharing when little man is an adult (probably as he’s finishing high school before leaving for college).

Back around my son’s first birthday a friend of mine mentioned the idea about making a time capsule and I loved the idea!  I started shortly after that and still have yet to consider the project completed.  I’m still waiting on a few people who are procrastinating terribly on writing a letter to him, then I can put the box away in storage to be forgotten about for a long while.  I’m not making the type of time capsule that you bury in the ground – just a plastic bin that I’ll eventually tape or seal some how (just in case anyone finds it and gets curious).

What I’ve included in the time capsule thus far are:

  • Letters from Mom, Dad and other close family & friends
  • Various memorabilia from his first year, like his receiving blanket, hospital bracelet, rattle, shoes, ultrasound pictures (on disc), decorations from his 1st birthday, etc.
  • Coins minted from his birth year
  • Birthstone (I haven’t decided how I’m going to include this yet…)
  • Various items from the past like his Dad’s craft project from when he was little, a magazine from his Great-Great Grandma, pictures of Mom and Dad when they were munchkins – the list in endless!
  • Newspaper/Magazine clippings from around the time when he was born
  • Definition of his name, zodiac sign, birth stone, etc.
  • Hand/Footprint laminated
  • Predictions of what he’ll be when he grows up (created by attendees of his first birthday party)
  • Current Technology and trends from year of birth
  • A collection of pictures which were displayed at his birthday party
  • Birth plan & story
  • Family tree (our family is too small and confusing but I may include one eventually)
  • Slideshow on DVD (will include once I figure out how to make one!)

And I’m sure I’ll find other items to include over time.  I’ve had a lot of fun creating and thinking of fun things to include knowing that someday we’ll (hopefully) get to watch him discover the time capsule and go down memory lane together!  It’s also the perfect way for the Grandparents and other family to share their own memories too.

I’ve also created a table of contents containing brief explanations of the items included.  With regards to the personal letters, I had each person seal up the letter in an envelope and label the outside.  Since the letters are so personal, I wanted each person to know that whatever is contained in the letter is personal between the two of them.  I’ve had to write some pretty difficult papers in my life but nothing compares to writing a letter that will be read far in the future yet not knowing if you’ll still be alive!  (I know it’s morbid but being a parent doesn’t make you exempt from the reality of life’s ultimate event.)

There’s only so much one can commemorate from childhood so a time capsule is the perfect way to pass on and share items in one place.  I’ve also ensured to keep on top of his baby book, as well as various online archives and hard discs of photos [as mentioned in previous post – Pictures].  I’m sure most would think I’ve gone a little overboard but he’s my first (and only, thus far) so I find it to be quite  therapeutic for me as well.  🙂  Have fun with it and be creative – you can’t go wrong!

What are some fun ways you’ve captured your child(rens) memories through the years??  Please feel free to share below, thanks!  🙂

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