That's why I make love letters for my children; one per year of their life. I take a piece of square scrapbooking card stock and fold it to make an envelope (I can post a tutorial if anyone wants more details), and then I decorate it to suit their personality and interests at that time.
Inside each envelope I add a variety of things including;
- a short note explaining why I designed the envelope the way I did,
- photos with explanations on the back of why I loved them in that moment,
- 'your favourite things' notes that showcase who they are,
- 'why you're so naughty' memos as long as they don't sound too mean,
- full letters that I write on their birthday remembering their birth-day,
- notes about what they did for their party & copies of their invitations,
- special messages on important days, such as first day at preschool, and how that day went,
- a small gift card with a Christmas message in it,
- a written note from Daddy,
- small drawings they have done,
- random thoughts that I write at odd times throughout the year when I find a peaceful moment or when I realise it's 'been a while' and so on.
Heaven forbid they grow up without me, and I'm not there to tell their grown-up selves how precious they have always been, I'm pleased to know that they'll always be a little treasure trove of goodies for them to look back through, sift through, laugh over, cry over... each one is like a tiny little time-capsule of that year of their life, filled with all my love.
I thought about sealing the envelopes up so they could be opened on a special day (they might open their 0-1 year on their 10th birthday for example), but then I like to occasionally sift back through the contents from time to time when I'm feeling nostalgic... just today while putting the finishing touches on Mimi's 5th birthday envelope (which will record her year from 5 to 6) I had a peak inside Mimi's 2-3 envelope (pictured above) and found a note I'd written which said something along the lines of "you're so naughty: you always snatch your baby sister's toys then put them up high so she can't get them... but then you make me laugh so hard... when I asked you what you wanted to be when you grew up you looked confused and then said 'a big Mimi!?!' and I think that's the perfect answer; I hope you always want to be you!"
If you've never written a Love Letter to your children - then do one for this Christmas.
They don't have to be as elaborate as mine, simply buy a nice writing set, sit down and write (don't type!) a letter to them, recalling the day they were born, how far they've come since, all the reasons you're so proud of them, note their quirks and phobias, and especially tell them the difference they make to your life and why you love them to the moon and back. Seal it with a kiss and tuck it away somewhere safe but obvious, and then one day, when they're old enough, hand it to them to read.
Sending love to you all,