Kirsty Prankerd is Managing Director of the keepsake retailer Write From The Heart. Here, she shares her top tips for things to do with your children during lockdown and creating a fun and sentimental time capsule with your kids.
Most of us have been spending a lot of time at home with our children over the last few months, so it’s understandable if you’re running out of ways to keep them entertained. But have you considered spending an afternoon creating a time capsule?
Not only will this be a lot of fun for the whole family, but it’s also a project that you’ll be grateful for in the future. You can encourage your kids to think about what life will be like when they’re all grown up and ask them to reflect on the memories they’ve already made.
Here, I’m going to give you my top tips for putting together a time capsule with your family, so you can have fun and create a sentimental gift for your future selves.
Start with a sturdy box
Before deciding what to put in your time capsule, you need to choose the box that’s going to house it. Which type of container you should choose depends on where you’re going to store your time capsule until it’s time to open it.
One option is to just keep it in a cool, dry space like your loft or a cupboard. This is going to be the best option if you’re planning to open it yourselves and you’re only going to leave it closed for a handful of years.
If you’re going down this route, a sturdy cardboard box will do the job. But, if you want to make your time capsule extra special, you could opt for something more robust and a little bit fancy, like a wooden box you can decorate.
Alternatively, if you want the true time capsule experience, you might wish to bury it in your garden. Perhaps you plan to dig it up whenever you move, or you could even leave it for someone else to find in the future. In this case, you’ll need to choose a container that’s air- and water-tight. You may even want to double up with boxes to keep your notes, photos, and trinkets properly protected.
Encourage your kids to reminisce and dream of the future
The most exciting thing about creating a time capsule is imagining what life might be like when it’s opened. If you’re planning to revisit your keepsakes, notes, and photos in 10 or even just five years’ time, so much could have changed. Depending on their ages, your kids could be at different schools or even starting their careers.
Encourage your kids to dream about what their lives will be like in the future. You could even get them to write notes to themselves, which they can read in years to come when you decide to open the capsule.
It also gives your kids an exciting opportunity to reflect on what they have right now, and the memories they’ve made so far. They could add photos, little toys, and even diary entries to the time capsule so they can look back on their younger years when they’re older.
Choose what to put in your time capsule
One of the most important (and fun) steps in creating your time capsule is choosing what you want to put in it. Here are some ideas to get you started:
• Notes to your future selves: Ask your family to sit down and write a letter to themselves in a few years’ time. You could all talk about your favourite things, what you hope your futures will look like, and what life is like right now. These will be really fun to read when you come to open the time capsule.
• Photographs: Photos can say a lot about a certain moment in time. And, in years to come, you’ll really enjoy looking back on the outfits, hairstyles, and home décor of today. Include photos of your whole family, including your pets, so everyone is involved!
• Newspaper clippings: It’s always interesting to look back on the news from a certain period of time, but the last year, in particular, has been very eventful. So, make sure you include website and newspaper clippings that show what life was like in 2020 and 2021.
• Receipts: Over time, the prices of basic groceries like milk and bread can change a lot. So, include a recent receipt in your time capsule. Then, in a few years’ time, you can take a peek at it and see how your weekly shop compares.
• Toys: If your little ones have recently grown out of some toys that they loved, why not include them in your time capsule? When it’s time to open it, they’ll be so excited to be reunited with their toys, and they’ll be able to reminisce about all the good times they had with them.
Creating and hiding a family time capsule can be a lot of fun, and you’ll be able to reap the rewards in a few years’ time. Take these tips on board and you can put together a collection of notes, photos, and trinkets that paint a picture of what life is like today.