Thursday, November 29, 2007

Christmas Help

My dad called me last night quite upset. He was worried about Christmas. My sister died earlier this year (at 26,) she left behind three fairly young daughters. He needed me to come up with something for remembering her before the presents are opened. He wants this to be something we do every year, and as others pass (I have some very old grandparents) we can add to it. I suggested hanging special ornaments on the tree. Not when we hang the rest, but at a special time. He didn't sound very keen on that. I suggested a candle, and he seemed like he liked that better. My original thought was to put her picture on the candle (I've done this before,) but I'm afraid it would get too cheesy and difficult to find great pictures of everyone as they pass away. And pictures always look dated in a short amount of time.Do any of you have special things that you do? Do any of you have ideas. I think it needs to be something that the kids or whatever physically do.I would love to hear any and all ideas.


KMAD said...

Maybe you could have a journal/book that you pass around and write letters or notes for the person(s) you are remembering? Or if the kids want to draw pictures or even add pictures or other scrappy memorabilia. Then each year you can revisit the previous year(s) prior to starting the new one. When those involved get used to this tradition, perhaps everyone will think ahead and prepare their addition to the book prior to the book-passing time.

Perhaps there's a special place (a stand or something) next to your tree where the book can sit through the holidays. The kids can pick the book up and look through it when they want to connect to those featured in the book.

Craftybernie said...

I'm sorry to hear that you lost your sister earlier this year. I can't begin to imagine how difficult it must be for all of you.

Lighting a candle is always a lovely way to remember someone. But personally it would upset me if I lit a candle which had the photo of that person on the side. It might be more appropriate to light a candle alongside a photo of the person being remembered.

I like the idea of a journal. Or maybe even making a memory album or scrapbook that celebrates your sisters life. If you look after pictures and use archival quality papers and albums you'll find that photos should last for a few generations at least.

In the case of your sisters children, would it be appropriate for them to pick out a favourite photo or write down a memory of their mum which could then be added to the album? And as they grow somebody could record photos and journal items about their lives.

Each child could have their own wallet or envelope in the book in case they wish to keep their thoughts & feelings private....

Planting a tree or a flower garden is a good way to remember someone. Maybe a commemorative bench in the garden or favourite park?

Take care...Bernie

Rebekah said...

A friend was telling me what they do to remember a nephew that died 2years ago of cancer. They find a needy child who has cancer and they buy that child a gift and say it is from the nephew that way they get to buy their nephew a gift keep his memory alive and help someone out who needs it.

I like planting a tree.

For us when someone has died we end up telling stories about them all year and at Christmas we donate money to cancer research since all of my Family has mostly passed away from cancer.

I hope this helps and you find something to suit your family.


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