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Preserve Your Family Memories
11/1/2018 11:25:57 AM
Preserve Your Family Memories

Today, we primarily have only historical records of politicians, famous artists or musicians, or those who otherwise stood out from a crowd. But what about everyone else? What about the unsung heroes who contributed to families, businesses, and communities? If one doesn’t purposefully document his or her story, it’s eventually lost forever. 

How much of your own family history is recorded? Do you know where your grandmother spent her childhood days playing or where your grandfather traveled during the war? Do you know what attracted your parents to each other? If you don’t know the meaningful details of your loved ones’ lives, chances are, fifty years from now, no one will remember those stories. 

The solution? Document your family’s history. The holidays are a perfect time to do this, as families come together for gatherings. Invite your parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, or other relatives to share their memories. Ask them direct questions about their life stories and preserve their answers. Here’s how: 
  1. Turn on your phone’s video camera and shoot the storytelling live.
  2. Use your phone’s recording app and record verbal stories.
  3. Use pen and paper to write stories as you hear them.
  4. Type up responses on your computer and print them for the whole family to cherish.
Now you know how to document family stories. But how do you actually unearth those stories? Try using the list of prompts below to build a framework of your loved one’s life. Remind them how crucial it is that they share their sentimental memories, since their memories are worthy of preservation and capable of inspiring the family in the future.
  • What’s your full name and date of birth?
  • Were you named after anyone?
  • What home, neighborhood, and town were you raised in? Describe each. 
  • What are your parents and grandparents’ names and years of birth?
  • What did your parents each do for a living?
  • What are your siblings’ names and years of birth?
  • What did you and your siblings or close friends like to do together as children? Describe favorite toys, activities, and outings. 
  • Where did you go to school? How did you get to and from school? What kind of student were you? 
  • What were your teenage years like? Describe jobs, activities, school, friendships, and dating.
  • How did you meet your spouse? What kind of dates did you go on? 
  • When and where were you married?
  • What are your children’s names and years of birth? 
  • What were your jobs and what was your ultimate career?
  • What home, neighborhood, and town did you raise your family in?
  • What are your greatest accomplishments? 
  • What are the most memorable places you have traveled to?
The above list is merely a starting point. You can come up with dozens of more prompts to help get your family’s history shared and saved. Now is the best time to save your family’s stories of yesterday for your family of tomorrow. 

For more information or if you’d like help preserving your family’s stories, contact Olivia Savoie, Raconteur Story Writing Services, raconteurwriting.com.
Posted by: Olivia Savoie | Submit comment | Tell a friend

Categories: Parenting  |  Relationships

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