When I take a vacation, I love to have a few notes jotted down about what we did each day. I write down the places we saw, things we did, even what we ate, because nine times out of ten, I CANNOT remember all of my favorite details of a trip as soon as we get home. After making memory books and keeping journals about some of our special vacations, I realized how nice it would be to make little notes about each place my family has been stationed. Like many military families, we will only be stationed in places a short amount of time. Why not think of the different places we move and go as an extended vacation?! Here are some ideas to help remember your favorite things you did and places you went for each duty station.
Add details to a calendar:
I already have a calendar hanging on the fridge with birthdays, appointments and important dates, so, I began adding fun tidbits to it! For example, Friday October 5th, hiked in Yosemite, August 8-11th trip to San Francisco where we ate the best food at The Slanted Door and had a great time trying a deep fried crab, Tuesday had a fabulous lunch with new best friend, ANYTHING GOES! After chronicling the fun events and memorable moments (first days of school, first lost tooth, etc) at the end of the year, you can go back and look at everything you have done! This makes GREAT New Years day discussions, or family dinner time chats. Then, you can conveniently use your notes when matching up pictures you have taken or creating a photo album or memory book.
Take lots of pictures:
We are lucky that we can snap a quick photo with most of the phones these days and on a digital camera! There is no need to worry about developing pictures and the disappointment none of them will come out (am I the only one who remembers those disposable wind cameras?)! This is even more reason to snap away. Take more photos than you think you will need so you can choose your kids favorite one of them playing soccer in the front yard, or snap a few in the next FRG meeting you attend. The best way to jog your memory about things is seeing a photo. Then, you can use these photos (I am still making ones form vacations years ago, better late then never right?) to make a photo album!
Create a Photo Album, Scrapbook or Memory book:
During college I was an avid scrapbooker, then life got busy so I switched to photo albums (the kind you slip the picture into a plastic cover) and then I became even lazier pressed for time, and found online memory books to be the fastest and easiest way to preserve memories! You can make these photo books at many different locations; Walgreens, Winkflash, Shutterfly, Snapfish etc! (I never order a photo book without a coupon code; you can find some great deals on Retailmenot.com, Livingsocial.com and Groupon.com)
I got these ideas from Pinterest (so many good ideas on this thing!)
FREE colorful state printouts These would look great framed in a family room. A discussion starter for anyone who visits and sees 5 states hung on the wall (you mean you have moved THIS many times!!)
FREE printable US map This printout gives you the options to add state labels, capitals and colors. This would be great to blow up and hung on kid's bedroom wall. You could use push pins or stickers to mark each place they have lived!
Use a map of the town you are stationed in as a matte in a photo frame with a picture of the house you lived in, or a favorite memory of the duty station.
How do you remember all the places you have lived and been stationed!? Please share your ideas in the comments!
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