A record of your holiday can help your kids remember their holiday while the things they collect along the way make great show-and-tell and school projects. Imagine, years from now, your children flipping through the pages with their own kids and reliving the experience.
As the product of two school teachers I was encouraged to write a diary while I was growing up. It was probably a way for them to keep me amused but there is something heart warming about flipping through the yellowing pages, looking at my neat, childish handwriting, and reading what was important to me at a young age.
Times have changed. With Facebook, digital scrap-booking and blogs there are more ways to share your travel experience than ever before. Many digital methods need to be completed once you get home and that’s where a good old fashioned journal has the advantage of keeping little ones amused and engaged on the road.
A journal doesn’t need to be fancy or complicated. A big spiral bound sketch pad and a pencil case for each child containing a box of crayons or markers, glue, scissors and plenty of tape will keep them happy for hours. Encourage them to collect brochures, ticket stubs and mementos to stick in along the way and draw a picture or write a story for each day or event. If your child isn’t old enough to write, help them with a caption or a couple of sentences on the back so you remember what goes where. Remember that it’s their journal, so ask your child what they want you to write and be sure to add the date. The important thing is to let your children use their imagination.
Recording memories is not just child’s play. Why not create a combined family diary? Give each family member a stack of blank A4 paper on which to write, draw or stick things. This works best if the parents and kids all participate so you get each family member’s impressions. Don’t forget to date each page to make life easier when you get home. Then, once the holiday is over, it won’t take long to arrange all the best pages in a ring binder.
If your kids are young you may find that you contribute most of the written component. If this is the case, take notes along the way and type them up at home to save time on the road. Then print out digital images to disperse through your family record.
Whether you choose a high-tech method or just an old fashioned journal, recording your memories heightens the experience and makes a lasting record of childhood to treasure well into the future.