Remember when you were a child, sitting around with your parents, or grandparents, listening to all their stories? How they had it so tough, uphill, there and back to school? In 6 ft. of snow? I loved listening to the stories that my family members would tell to one another; they brought my imagination to life! As well as my curiosity with one million questions, mostly ‘why?’.
November is National Family Stories Month and I encourage you to relive your childhood memories with your children. You don’t have to stop there though, create new traditions, this month, that will be unique to your family.
We’ve been participating in a movie night every Friday evening, but not these new Pixar movies, movies/television shows I enjoyed as a child. It’s great because it reminds me of my parents and childhood friends, and I get to watch my own children enjoy it. Making treats together also transforms movie night into so much more than simply watching TV; the kids are learning new recipes they’ll someday make for their families.
Spending time with family and friends always sparks a “remember when” moment. The kids especially love when my childhood is brought up by relatives and hearing how I was a “tough cookie” or that “no” was my first word. Having the children’s grandparents over always gives the children a different perspective on how life used to be.
Breaking out the old family photo albums is a great way to bring up some memories and stories. Seeing printed pictures in today’s technology filled world is a memory all its own. My kids love to see how we dressed, styled our hair and even the furniture I lived on, growing up. They’re always asking “who is that”, “what is this” and it’s often amusing to explain how these people were part of my life. I’ve started to print the pictures the kids take, for them to set in their own albums. When they see the photos they took weeks before, they always relive the moment, and want to talk about what was happening (more elaborately of course).
With the Holiday’s fast approaching, it’ll be a perfect time to share stories of your past with the kids. Think about the recipes your making, who taught you? How did you feel when you were the helper and not the chef? What was your favorite part of Thanksgiving? Christmas? There are also a lot of sports on at this time of year; football and basketball, to name a few. Did your dad have a favorite team, and did you watch the game, together, with the family cheering for the team? You share these traditions with your kids while telling them about your past.
If you’re looking to incorporate some history into your stories, you can always visit the local library and pull up the archives. Look at special dates to your family, in years passed, and see what was going on then. Find old birth announcements, events you or your family were part of and read the articles. Visiting a retirement community provides excellent stories for the children and entertainment for the individuals who live there. Your children may have a special friendship with someone who may not have family around to visit them.
This whole month is about sharing stories and spending quality time with those you love; friends and family. Creating lasting memories are easy when you’re surrounded by the people that matter most in your life.