April is National Letter Writing Month, and there is nothing we love more than a good old handwritten letter. In fact, our Me + You journal was created to be a correspondence journal - for collecting and sharing letters.
We try hard to value people and experiences over things, but sometimes it’s the things we have that sustain our memories, that help keep them very much alive when time has weathered them. These journals can be a treasured thing, an artifact of a life well lived.
This week I’d like to share a few new ideas for collecting moments for your children in our correspondence journal.
Since the moment we found out we were expecting I have been keeping journals to document the seemingly fleeting time. I have them all saved in hopes that one day our daughter will go back and read about how loved and anticipated she was. But as she gets older I start to recognize the old saying “it takes a village” couldn’t be truer. There are so many people who are helping to shape and grow our precious girl, and while some will be temporary figures in her life I still hope she remembers what they brought to the table. As parents I think we all value those who rally around us to help raise our babies.
• a collection of letters from each teacher/coach/mentor your child has ... at the end of each school/season year you secretly communicate to your child’s teacher/coach that you will would like for them to write him/her a letter in their journal. (This gets a bit trickier in middle school and high school with the multiple teachers so just picking the one or two from each year who your child connected most with would be best.) This is also a great place to paste in some of their important letters or photographs to add to the letters. By their graduation day you will have a wonderful collection of letters to send them off into the next chapter. The love and support within those pages will encourage and comfort them as they navigate a new life away from their safety net.
• a collection of weekly letters for a year ... each week brings something new. A new milestone, a new experience, a new challenge. Writing a letter to your child each week can be a beautiful way to highlight and capture the most significant memories and moments. Whether you write one letter to all of your children or create a special journal just for them, it will be a wonderful artifact of a life well lived as they grow and have their own children some day. I also find it is helpful for me as a mom who feels like the days seem to fly by with just a blink of the eye. Creating volumes of letters will be a beautiful gift for your child to cherish for the rest of their lives, and will become a tangible legacy of their life well after they leave this side of heaven.
• a collection of letters between you and your children ... traveling parents know just how significant the time away can be, and just how tricky it can be for children. Using our Me + You journal as a way to stay connected while you’re traveling. It can ease some of the sadness, and add some excitement to the process. Not a traveling parent? That’s ok! Sharing these pages can be just as fun when you get to kiss your children good night each day. Children of all ages can write letters or draw pictures, and there’s is value in taking the time to read and truly listen to what they have to say. It’s even more powerful to see how special they feel when a letter is written back to them.
• a collection of letters between siblings ... this is a fun way for children to reconnect and create an artifact of their stages of life as siblings. I can still remember vivid moments growing up with my brothers and then what life was like when our younger siblings arrived. Collecting letters to share in a ‘penpal’ format will allow all your children to be a part of sharing their perspective on life as it happened through their eyes.
We’d love to hear how your ideas!