The perfect heartfelt gift – 20 minutes a day

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The Olsen

The Olsens

The perfect heartfelt gift – 20 minutes a day

My baby sister has been driving her siblings nuts this year as she prepares a special gift for our parents.

For the past few months, she’s been “encouraging” us to write down our childhood memories so she can add them to a photo book she’s creating. It’s a great idea – but also hard work. To me, it’s a time-consuming emotional process to go through your memories, put them down nicely on paper and share them with the world, or at least with the family.  But what better present could there be? You on paper for your children, parents and relatives.

I’d like nothing more than to have my siblings, parents, our only surviving grandparent and more of my extended family write their stories and share them. As I delve deeper into our family history I realize what great knowledge we hold in our minds. It all dies when a relative passes and has not recorded his or her memories, or caring relatives had not succeeded in prying out those memories.

Although possibly an arduous process, what a great gift it is to record your personal history. Instead of always looking to your parents and grandparents, perhaps it’s time to understand the importance of recording your own stories as well as those of your family.

In reality, I’m preaching to myself as I realize what a great gift it would be to share the stories in my head with my children. I’m still young, but getting older by the minute. I may as well record my stories now and avoid having my grandchildren insist that I immediately start talking while they stare and record.

As the holidays get ever closer, I’ve come up with a plan of action.  My goal is to sit and write for at least 20 minutes a day – not more – to record my memories and stories. From there, I’ll adapt and adjust it, but what’s important right now is just to begin. Whether or not I give this as a gift this year is yet to be seen, but the real gift is the security of knowing that – no matter when I go – at least my past will remain for my loved ones.

I’d like to invite my readers to join me in this 20-minute goal from now until Christmas Day.  Write what you want – but write something — so that your family will have this special gift when you are gone.

2 Responses to “The perfect heartfelt gift – 20 minutes a day”

  1. So far so good. I’ve been writing 20 minutes each night since I posted this. Okay that’s only two times – but its a start.
    My first entry was about TV – and how its changed for the worse and for the better since the days of Little House on the Prairie. The second entry was memories of where I grew up. California, Connecticut, and where I spent most of my Life – Irving Texas – the shot above was taken in front of our Irving home.

    I’d love to hear from anyone who is writing for 20 a day and find out how its going.

  2. [...] year ago I wrote my goal to spend 20 minutes a day journaling, so that I would have a good history to pass on. I did badly! [...]

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