What are the best things you remember from your childhood? Find a way to incorporate some of those memories into your current family. For example, when I was young, for Christmas we always had the Mary and Joseph figurines travel around the house on their journey until they arrived in the manger on Christmas Eve. My daughters have recalled that memory several times and smiled, as I carried that on to the next generation. Be creative.
What are the things you liked least about your childhood? Be sure you stay aware of your own actions as you begin to shape the minds and worlds of little ones around you. Be sure to reflect on how well you are staying away from creating those same memories for the next generation. If you find you are repeating that pattern, please seek help in making that correction before it is too late.
Observe and reflect on memories you have of other families you knew growing up. Think about your role models and the fond memories you have created with them. What can you take from those experiences and instill into today? You may have to adjust the technology of some of those memories though. When I was a child, it was a rule in my home that my Mom and Dad had to know where we were at all times. We could leave a note on the kitchen table or actually speaking to them to let them know where we were. I always felt safe knowing that someone knew where I was. Today, while my daughters do not live at home any longer, if they are traveling somewhere or they are leaving our home to go back to theirs, I always want to know when they have arrived safely. Rather than a note or an in person discussion, that has been replaced sometimes by a text. I hope I have instilled that feeling of safety for them, as I felt as a child.
Another exciting part of creating memories for others is developing new traditions in your family. I learned a few years ago about a German tradition that I thought was awesome. We never knew about that tradition in my family of origin but my girls now ask about it every year. In case you were wondering, the tradition involves my purchase of a "pickle" ornament for our Christmas tree. The German tradition is to hide the pickle ornament within the tree and challenge others to find it. The one who finds the pickle first gets an extra surprise gift from "Santa". Great memories for sure.
Memories do not have to necessarily involve holidays either. Memories created while sitting around the dinner table like special "Friday Pizza Nights" or always going around the table and sharing the best part of each day with everyone. Memories can involve special places that were visited every year or every season. They can involve special recipes that are shared each year. They can involve your household pets that you hold dear to your heart.
What wonderful memories will you create this year for yourself and for your family?
I wish you well this coming year and hope you are able to create memories with those around you that will be remembered for years to come.