Summer’s here and the kids are home and you’re looking for some things to do. Parents have a great opportunity to make some fun memories with the whole family. Having your kids look back fondly on this time in their lives is important, so give them the best things to remember and the best ways to preserve those memories. Here are some ideas that will help you and your kids keep memories alive. They’re fun, unique and you can customize them any way you’d like.

12 Fun Ways to Help Your Kid Hang Onto Memories

1)  Make a Time Capsule

Collect a handful of things from your kids’ lives and put it in a time capsule. All types of receptacles could work. And you can put anything in the capsule: ranging from everyday items, like a small toy or a label of their favorite cereal, to vacation memorabilia, like ticket stubs or sand from a far away beach.

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2) Take Pictures of Things You’re Getting Rid of

This might sound a little strange, but think of it this way. Everyone wants to get rid of clutter, but perhaps some of the items have nostalgic value for you or your children. While still being selective, take pictures of the things you are getting rid of, so you have a manageable digital copy of what you’re tossing. You can even group common items together to photograph: like old baseball gear or worn ballet shoes. In the end, you’ll have a sweet album to look back on and show when the kids get older

3) Start a “Trip Fill-in-the-Blank” card 

Ever come back from vacation and have pictures and other items that you don’t remember taking? An idea to keep all the memories fresh is to try a “fill in the blank” card. Essentially it is a fun, quirky short-hand list that notes every detail of your trip. Attach a picture, say where you took it, where did you stay, what was that funny line Dad told the waitress that one time: the memories are endless. This is a chance for your kids to get crafty too; you can have them make the card and write out what they remember and so on.

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4) Save your Travel

Vacation photos are nice, but what about the journey there? All those car songs, games, snacks and stir crazy moments driving or waiting in terminals can get lost in the mix of your vacation. So capture those moments by saving travel tickets, photographing the kids sleeping in the back, filming one of your family games on the road: basically, anything that’s unique to you and your family.

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5) Photo Memory Game

Make a game out of your collected photos. Take some of your favorites and make a matching game. Your kids can even help out by choosing their favorite photos and participating in the game. See how well they know who’s who.

6) Photo Scavenger Hunt

This can be a year round thing: but if you want to do this just for the summer, you’ll have to keep the list shorter. Have a list of things you want to photograph your kids doing. Some past examples include your kid holding his or her favorite toy, wearing their favorite outfit, your kid inside their childhood bedroom or their first classroom and more. It all depends on what you and your kids want to remember. The kids can participate too if they want; they can photograph their favorite things without adult assistance. This will give those photos a genuine childish feel to them that will make you smile.

7) Interview your Kid

This is more of a video project. Ask your child questions about what they like or dislike or what they’re thinking. Doing this on their birthday would be perfect, but even on days such as the last day of school or the last day of summer can work as well. You can even have more fun with this project by having your child act as their favorite person or celebrity: see how much their taste changes from year to year.

8) Hand-print Poster

Put a spin on the typical paint hand-print poster or tapestry. This is a messy project, so why not pair it up with fun pictures of your kids being messy! Have your child’s hand-print and have a small collage of your kid at his or her silliest, messiest or anything that will get a lot of laughs.

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9) Get Creative with your Display

Having some company over for a midsummer barbecue? Have some fun showing off your family photos with unique frames and displays. A neat craft is to put one of your photos in a glass mason jar accompanied with small collectibles—that will be sure to get some nice compliments. And your kid can help out by choosing what collectibles go with each photo.

 

10) Polaroid Wall

First you have to find a blank wall that you’d be willing to fill up with Polaroid pictures. Then you would have to acquire a Polaroid camera, which is difficult but not impossible (and if you really can’t find any, then printed digital photos will work just as well). After, spend time finding the right moments to capture on Polaroid and post them on your blank wall. You’ll have a unique mural to show off.

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11) Indoor Camping Adventure

Is nature not really your thing? Or are you too far away from it to begin with? Bring the fun of camping inside your home! Collaborate with the entire family to create the ultimate fantasy campsite right in your living room: with all the necessities, including cool pajamas and fireside treats. Simply attempt to capture the essence of the great outdoors.

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12) Be Natural

Sometimes you don’t even need a prompted idea or activity to make memories. Every day is your chance to make memories. Keep your life exciting: always have something ready to capture the moment and enjoy your time with your family.