Family Time Capsule: How to

Making a family time capsule is an activity that your future self will thank you for. Here are some items you may want to consider including.

What is a time capsule?

A time capsule is a collection of items that you seal up and store for a set amount of time, to be opened at a later date. Many schools have done this by filling up a box with items from students and burying the box to be dug up in the future. The idea is to connect people of the past with people of the future (or present, depending on your point of view).

Most often, time capsules are intended to be opened at some length of time that is so far in the future everyone who contributed to it has already passed away. For a family time capsule, you can choose any amount of time you want. Maybe when your child is 18 and getting ready to go off to college, or when they are getting ready to have their first child. Whenever you decide to open the capsule, be sure to set the date firmly and do not open it before then.

Items you might include in your capsule:

A family photo – Be it a casual photo or one from a special event, try to choose a picture that depicts everyone at the age you are when you bury or store the capsule.

Letters – Have everyone write a letter to their future selves. They can write about their hopes or predictions for the future or just some message they want to remember years later. You can also write letters to each other for an even more special experience.

An item with special value – Maybe it’s a toy or a little trinket. Give yourself a little gift in the future that means something to you now.

A list of current events – What movie is popular this year or won an Oscar? How much is gas right now? What is going on in the news? Write out all of these things and more, collect a few current newspaper clippings, or a popular magazine.

A floor plan of your home – You would be surprised how much your home may change in the next few years or what details you may forget if you move.

A list or cd with this years hit music – You can even label your CD with everyones favorite song at the time.

A list of favorites – Write out a questonair of favorites and have everyone fill one out. Think of things like “favorite tv show,” or “favorite food.”

Whatever you decide to put in your capsule make it you own with your own creative spin. There is no right or wrong way to do it, just think about what you might enjoy finding from your past and give that to your future self.


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