Beyond the Baby Book: 5 Creative Ways to Preserve Memories
Baby memory books are traditionally used to preserve special memories, especially during your baby’s first year. They come with pages for you to jot down their birth statistics, their first word, and all the other milestones that pepper the childhood years. There might be little pockets built in to tuck in a lock of hair or a hospital bracelet.
However, not everyone is a fan. Maybe you’re juggling a busy household and don’t plan on keeping up with a baby book. Or maybe you want another way to commemorate the milestones through the childhood years, and not just the early ones. Perhaps you’re just not that sentimental. In any case, if you’re opting out of the baby book, you can still consider more modern and creative alternatives to preserve special childhood memories.
- Email Your Baby
Hey, it’s never too early to create an email account! Once you have a baby name, go ahead and create an account for your child. You can use one of the free email platforms like yahoo or gmail. Some people may want to pay for their own email hosting. Either way, set up a name and start writing your baby!
- You can begin sending emails while the baby is still in the womb. Attach a photo of their ultra sound scan and describe how you felt when you found out about them.
- Write yearly birthday emails to your child and attach a photo from their birthday celebration.
- Send random thoughts and funny stories from their childhood. It’s much easier to get on your phone, type out a few lines, and hit “send”, rather than trying to remember to writing down amusing events later on in the memory book.
- Include short videos of your child’s milestones. Got a shot of their first steps? The first time they ate solid food? Their first vacation? Shoot a quick email and attached a video of the special event.
- When your child celebrates their 18th birthday, give them the password and let them share in all the special memories you have saved over the years!
- Keep a “Kids’ Journal”
Sometimes people just want to have something tangible to look through. In that case, keep a journal just about the kids. This gives you more freedom in how you want to preserve memories. Forget the pre-labeled facts you need to input—simply jot down whatever adorable tidbit comes to mind! Some tips on ensuring that you make the most of the journaling experience:
- Place the kids’ journal in a high-traffic area to ensure that it gets the most use. Don’t tuck it away on a shelf!
- Place it where you spend a lot of time. On your desk, or on the kitchen counter, or even on the coffee table next to the remote controls.
- Just jot down whatever you find meaningful whenever you have moment. Kids do say the darndest things!
- Tape little notes and drawings from the children onto journal pages.
- Write Inside a Children’s Book
Take a children’s book you read a lot to your baby, or one that meant something to you in your own childhood, and transform it into your own personal memory keepsake. Not only will this particular story book remain special, but it will also be filled with personal memories.
- Write a note inside the cover about why you chose this particular book. If you can’t think of a favorite yet, consider something whimsical like a book featuring Mother Goose nursery rhymes or Dr. Seuss’ “Oh the Places You’ll Go”.
- Start at the beginning and fill every page’s margins with notes to your child, funny things they say, and milestone memories.
- Lend it to your child’s elementary school teacher at the end of each year to “sign” with a few thoughts about your child.
- Fill a Keepsake Box
Sometimes parents will have every intention to preserve precious memories, but can’t seem to find the time to organize their thoughts. If that’s you, a keepsake box could be the solution. You can fill the box with special items so you’ll know exactly where to look if you want to take a trip down memory lane, without needing to organize a thing!
- Use something interesting like a decorated photo box, a beautiful hat box, or one of those sturdy cardboard trunks.
- Every time you come across something you’d like to keep, like a lock of hair from their first hair cut, drop it in a labeled Ziploc bag and add it to the box.
- Tuck away special birthday cards with meaningful messages.
- Hold on to sweet keepsakes like ultrasound photos, baby announcements or shower invites.
- Explore the box together with your child on a rainy day; young kids love touching and handling physical objects.
- Print Your Social Media
Are you the type to use social media as a journal and as a way to update friends and family? Do you wish you can have something tangible to show your child in the future, or perhaps even just for yourself to flip through and enjoy? If so, look into getting your posts and photos made into printed books.
- For Facebook and Instagram, check out sites like Chatbooks, blookup.com, My Social Book or Artifact Uprising
- Compiling your social media uploads into books is not only a great alternative to a baby memory book, it can make great gifts for grandparents as well!