I call this a Spring project, but you can make this any time of year. If your kids are anything like mine, they do not want to wait for the ground to thaw so they can bury their time capsule. That is one reason why I feel Spring is an ideal time of year for this project. The other is that I like the idea of Spring representing new beginnings and growth so at the same time as we are celebrating the renewal of life, we are also preserving a little piece of the past. Looking back is truly an excellent counterpart to looking ahead.
First you must decide what container you would like to use. It must be something durable. Any tin container will do. My family uses a clean, recycled coffee can. Simple, right? This serves my family’s purposes well, but you can use something larger if you like. Decorating the outside of the container is fun for the kids. We like to put the year the time capsule was created and our names on it.
The first thing we do is write on a piece of paper a little something for each member of the family. We each pick something short and sweet that we would like to remember about the year. My youngest daughter likes to write her special interest of that time. My older daughter who is a voracious reader like myself likes to write the title of her favorite book that she has read recently. We roll the paper into a scroll and tie it with a pretty ribbon.
Next you must decide what items are to be included in the time capsule. Now is the time to get really creative and have fun! Picures, award ribbons, drawings, poems, whatever you like. Including what represents you and what was really important in your life at the time is the key to making it meaningful. I would recommend not putting anything in the time capsule that is too valuable. You never know! That is why I use doubles of pictures and photocopies of certain things so I will not have to worry about something that is irreplacable getting damaged. It does not take anything away from the project and gives you peace of mind.
I use ziploc baggies and plastic wrap to encase everything. We then take turns placing everything in the can and troop off to the backyard to pick a place to bury our time capsule. My husband picks a good spot in the yard and we all take turns placing the dirt over the can. If weather or any other factors prevent you from actully burying your time capsule, that’s ok. You can hide it in your attic,or the back of a closet. Your family must decide how long to leave the time capsule buried. At my children’s age, a year is forever. I know as they get older and develop more patience, we will be able to pick a date to dig up our time capsule farther into the future. For now, one year seems to be the perfect timeframe for them. All parents know that children grow and change so rapidly , you will be amazed at the sentimental feelings you get as you look through items of their life from a year ago.
We have done this two times already and we really love it. It is a wonderful family project.