I am not a natural born crafter. In fact, sometimes just walking into a craft store can make me dizzy at the sight of fake flowers, walls of tiny beads, and scent of hot glue wafting through the air. Under normal circumstances, I would turn around and walk out the door.

Yet having a young child has made me see the powerful value in creating a memory book in the wake of loss. These books can be a portable altar, reminding the child of memories they shared with their loved one. My daughter has slept with hers under her pillow and taken it on trips. It has helped remind her of details she might not be able to recall as time goes by.

Whether you create a memory book online or with old-fashioned scissors and glue, putting a book of special memories together can be tremendously healing.  Plus, it can give family members an activity to do together.

Reminder: Do these activities gently and perhaps even over a period of time. There is no rush. Some I have done right away, others I keep coming back to. The memory book can evolve with you.

Ideas For Individuals:

  • Create a book of favorite images of you and your loved one.
  • Keep a Memory Journal
    I found this very helpful in the first year because there were so many things I was afraid I would forget. Writing the memories down, as they came to me, took away the panic and made me feel calmer. 
  • Keep A Memory Box

Ideas For Children and Families:

  • Create a Book of Favorite Photos with space to write memories.
  • Write a “Cartoon” or “Graphic” Journal of Memories
  • Decorate Memory Tree
    This can be a simple tabletop, plastic tree from which you hang decorative pieces of paper with memories on them. 
  • Create A Memory Box
    Let the child decorate the outside with paint or collage. Then together you can fill it with written folded notes, each one with a memory. Perhaps include small items that remind the child of their special person.
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