Keep all special thoughts and memories for lifetimes to come. Share these keepsakes with others to inspire hope and build from the past, which can bridge to the future.
~ Mattie Stepanek (b.July 17, 1990 – d.June 22, 2004)
Did you notice the dates in the quote above? They are such wise words for one so very young.
Do you ever wonder how your memories would replay in a movie of your life? I do. As I age (gracefully?) and particularly at this time of year my mind goes into overdrive, my life is divided into two sections – before my father’s death and after his death. It is this massive marker of when my life changed. There are times when I think everything in my life was good before that date and everything since has been awful.
But the evidence doesn’t hold up that statement, I had a serious road accident when I was 15 which was pretty bad and definitely happened in the pre 2004 section. I met & later fell in love with a wonderful man in 2006 and that is clearly in the post 2004 section. I just think that at times we are very selective with our memories.
For instance, I really struggle to recall good times in my marriage, yet I know they are there somewhere they have just been buried under all the rubbish and hurt of the last 10 years.
One of the most therapeutic things I have done over the last few years was to compile a book for my daughter’s 18th birthday. Collaborating on the book with our family and her friends, mentors and teachers made me see that despite many challenges I had made quite a good job of bringing her up. My attitude to myself as a parent changed a little from then on and I have more confidence in myself now (as a mother) and I think as a family unit we all benefit from that now.
This whole blog has been about my thoughts, memories and keepsakes, hoping not to inspire others but to inspire myself to hope, build from the past and in turn, bridge to the future.
18th October 2004 (father’s death), 18th October 2006 (met my previous partner), 18th October 2015 (mind your own business) all have special significance to me and for very different reasons; do you think it strange that one particular date can have such significance? Who knows!
So here’s a bit of news for you…
I have met someone who I hope I am going to move forward with and build bridges to the future. The future could be as short as tomorrow or as long as forever but nobody can possibly tell. I know for sure that making memories is so incredibly important and that with every moment that passes we have far less time in front of us than behind us. So with that in mind we (yes WE) made a conscious effort, put our heads together and have drawn up a plan for memory building.
Would you like to see it?
To build memories we should…*
…Climb a tall hill
…Sleep under the stars
…Skinny dip in the sea
…Bake a cake
…Ride a tandem
…Fly a kite
…Choose each other’s clothes for an evening out
…Plant a tree
…Build a snowman
…Have a picnic in a field &/or in a wood
…Make a sandcastle
…Paint each other
…Row a boat on the Thames
…Visit one castle/stately home every month for a year
#1 Corfe Castle 12th December 2015
#2 Hurst Castle 17th January 2016
#3 Bishop’s Waltham Palace 14th February 2016
#4 Old Sarum 6th March 2016
#5 Kingston Lacy & Badbury Rings 30th April 2016
#6 Maiden Castle & The Nine Stones 29th May 2016
#7 Wolvesey Castle 25th June 2016
#8 Porchester Castle 3rd July 2016
#9 Stourhead 23rd August 2016
#10 Southsea Castle 24th September 2016
#11 Old Wardour Castle 22nd October 2016
#12 Mottisfont Abbey 26th November 2016
…Make a bucket list
…Kiss in a haystack
…Collect Sea Glass whenever we can
…Share a shower
…Plan & go on a holiday
…Go for a ride in a horse and carriage
…See the Northern Lights
…Kiss passionately on a beach at sunrise &/or sunset
…Visit Lake Como
Share a hot tub 9th July 2016
Share an ice cream 7th November 2015
Visit Stonehenge 23rd January 2016
Go to a Rugby match 29th April 2017
Have a go at stone balancing – I tried & succeeded on 23rd January, the challenge is ON! 12th August 2017 record so far is 18!
…Complete a jigsaw together (1000+ pieces)
…Design a dream home
Create a playlist that we both love 20th July 2017, our wedding playlist.
Kiss under mistletoe 24th, 25th & 26th December 2015
…Create a memory book/blog/photo album
…Write a love letter to each other
…Go star gazing
…Go to the ballet
…Have a snowball fight
Take a selfie 31st October 2015, this has developed into Selfie on a Bridge (wherever in the world we are).
…Have afternoon tea
…Visit a European city that neither of us have visited before
Grow vegetables to eat August 2017, an amazing tomato plant with bigger plans for the future
…Spend the whole day in bed
…Do a fire walk
…Learn a circus trick
Go for a bike ride 24th January 2016
Play a board game 28th November 2015
…Watch each other’s favourite film
…See a musical
…Kiss in the pouring rain
…Visit a temple
…Redesign the garden
Revisit the bench in the garden at Mottisfont 31st October 2015
…Make Elderflower Cordial (this looks like a good recipe)
Write our Wedding vows 20th July 2017
*All this has been compiled and shared with the kind permission of Mr Bojangles and some of it you will recognise from my own Bucket List.