Two Memory Projects: Wedding Idea & Daily Calendar Journal

If you asked me what I did last Friday, you’d probably have to stare awkwardly at me for about ten minutes while I racked my brain to figure out what in the world I was doing a week ago. I admit it, I’m horrible at remembering things, big or small, and that’s part of the reason I started this blog. I can remember big life events pretty well, but when it gets down to the details, I simply just forget (maybe I need to eat more blueberries –aka brain food, or something). Luckily my friends and family are pretty good a remembering things, so they fill me in whenever I need a little extra hint. Lately I’ve been trying to take a few more pictures in an attempt to at least document the memories in a series of images, but I’ve also created a few more memory keepers along the way that I’m going to share with you today.

Wedding Ceremony “Love Letter Box”

Wedding Photos by Fresh Photography

The idea came about when Steve and I were brainstorming about the unity part of our wedding ceremony. We’d seen many weddings where the bride and groom lit a candle or poured sand into a vase to represent “coming together as one,” but we both had a few worries about those ideas. I had nightmares about the wind at our outdoor wedding blowing out the candles mid ceremony or having the vase of sand spill or break while we were out of the house and coming home to find Socrates finishing up a gritty, memory filled meal. After doing a bit of research and finding some unique ideas ranging from tying an actual knot to broom jumping to a salt and water ceremony, we finally stumbled upon an idea of a “love box” and sat down to put our own twist on it.

Here’s how it worked:

Steve and I wrote love letters to each other before the wedding, saying why we were getting married, what we loved about each other, and all that sappy stuff. We had a very talented member of our family make us a beautiful wooden box that was perfectly fitted for a bottle of wine, two wine glasses, and our letters. The box was placed on the altar before the ceremony, and already had the wine and glasses in it. The love letters were residing safely with the maid of honor and best man.

During the ceremony, the minister told everyone about the love letters that we had written to each other and about the wine and glasses that the box held. He explained that if we were ever having trouble in our marriage, before we did anything drastic, we would need to sit down and open the box, pour ourselves a glass of wine and read what we wrote to one another to remind us of why we wanted to marry in the first place. We hope to never have that problem, so he also explained that we will open the box on our 50th wedding anniversary. The thought of opening that box with Steve as a little old married couple in our 70’s is the reason I fell for this idea immediately. As a surprise, our parents also wrote letters to us that they put into the box before the ceremony, so when we do open the box, not only will we have the love letters that we wrote to each other, but we’ll also have the words and memories from our parents letters.

Okay, back to the ceremony – once the minister explained what we were doing, we took the letters we’d written from our MOH/BM and placed them in the box and that’s where the symbolic gesture came into play, just like you get with the unity candle or sand. After everything was in the box, we took a nail and hammer and nailed the box shut – basically sealing the deal :). Being the not-so-handy-girl that I am, it took a while for me to nail my part and after an extended amount of time and giggles from our friends and family, I finally had to have a little help from my almost husband and we eventually got it nailed down.

This part of the ceremony was one of my favorite things about our wedding and it’s nice to know that we have a little piece of our younger selves to look back on when we get all old and wrinkly (but still cute!).

A Lazy Persons Daily Memory Journal

Adapted from Design Sponge

I’ve tried what seems like a dozen times to write in a daily journal to have a keepsake of my thoughts and adventures over the years, but it never fails that after a couple of entries my interest fades and it becomes one of those awkward yet highly amusing things that you find years later while digging through a closet. I love writing about news or food or adventures, but writing about feelings and deep inner thoughts just isn’t my thing (and I generally remember feelings more than actual events anyway). So that’s where this project comes in; pretty much the lazy girl’s version of a daily journal.

I cut up some index cards and used a date stamp to make a card for each day of the year and separated the months with cut pieces of pretty paper I found in my desk drawer. Each day I write a few words (really, like 5-6 words max – hello, easy!) about what I did, things like “had lunch with mom” or “went slacklining with Steve.”  Next year on today’s date, I’ll start on the next line of the same card and write 2013 along with something I do that day. It doesn’t really pay off much in the first couple of years, but once 3-4 years pass, and eventually even 20 years, it will be such a treat to reminisce about what I did on that day however many years ago. It’s an easy project to make and requires 10 seconds at the end of the day to jot something down, so that’s definitely a worthwhile memory saver in my book.

This is also a great gift to give at a wedding or baby shower. I actually put a box together to go along with the Crayon Monogram Frame that I gave to friends of mine and their sweet baby boy. It’s a nice way to document things for babies since they learn and do so much within those first years, and how awesome would it be to be a 16-year old kid filling out your card for the day and looking back to see that on that day 14 years ago you potty’d in the toilet for the first time or something (okay, maybe I’m just weird).

So, those are a couple of ways I try to compensate for my lack of a good memory. What about you, do you have any fun ways of saving your memories?

And one more wedding photo, just for good measure!

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