Make a Memory a Year

As we are now in summer vacation season, sharing a great idea from Jack Canfield, author of Chicken Soup for the Soul books and The Success Principles, seems appropriate. And Jack was happy to let me share this idea with you.

His idea is for a family to create a Memory a Year, a memory so big and memorable that your family will remember it forever (it works with friends also). This memory could be on an incredible vacation idea or an unforgettable local event and it doesn't need to be a huge financial burden … just make it big and outrageous and memorable! The example that Jack used was of a family who planned a car trip across the country. They decided to pull the car over whenever they saw a body of water and jump in! Out of the car they'd hop and into the water they'd jump. Whether it was a pond, river, lake, or pool, the family jumped in. How fun, and what a great memory! Since I live in Florida with countless alligator-inhabited lakes, this wouldn't be my first idea of a great plan, but what the memory is doesn't matter. What matters is that an outrageous memory for each year is created, a memory that you can reminisce about forever. These memories can be made with your spouse, kids, girlfriends, or anyone you'd like to reminisce with.  

Much of the fun is in the planning of the outrageous memory. How fun it would be each week to give the kids an assignment to come up with ideas, start the planning, get the maps put together, etc. 

When Jack shared this story, I immediately thought of how wonderful an idea this was for traveling wives and moms.  The guilt we load up on our shoulders over not being with our family at all times is heavy. Yet this idea is so easy and so fun and such a great way to focus on the anticipation and carry-through of an annual event, the guilt load may possibly lighten up. My adult kids and I can reminisce over past vacations or family events, but hearing this idea makes me wish I could relive the years when my kids were younger so that we'd have special great memories from each year. 

Some ideas to get you started….

  • A charity walk for the entire family to train, fundraise and walk in. Get t-shirts for everyone in the family.
  • A trip to a city based on the alphabet … Year 1, select a city beginning with the letter 'A', the next year select a city starting with 'B', etc …
  • A different mode of transportation each year (hot air balloon, helicopter)
  • A friends-weekend with several couples, with lots of game-playing with our childhood favorites (Parcheesi or Twister, anyone?)

Be sure to put together a photo album (online or print) for each year's outrageous memory. Use the photos in family calendars that you create for the new year. Have 'reminiscing' talks frequently to bring back the memorable feelings, and start planning the next Memory a Year!

Thanks, Jack, for letting us share this story with our members.

Traveling women, please share your stories with us of your outrageous annual memories!

Jack Canfield is the founder and co-creator of the billion-dollar brand Chicken Soup for the Soul. The New York Times #1 best-selling book series has more than 200 titles in print and over 100 million copies sold in 41 languages. As an internationally recognized leader in personal development and peak performance strategies, Jack has spent the last 35 years teaching millions of people how to up-level everything they do. His bestselling book, The Success Principles: How to Get From Where You Are to Where You Want to Be contains dozens of the most powerful secrets to success used by top achievers from all walks of life.

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One Comment

  1. I so totally agree with this idea/point of view. As a working and traveling mom I also agree with your PoV that it’s even more important for those of us who carry guilt about our availability of these moments.

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