Create a Gift Memory Book
A memory book is a great gift to help celebrate a birthday or other momentous occasion. Here are few tips and ideas to help get you started.
A memory book is a great gift to help celebrate a birthday or other momentous occasion. Here are a few tips and ideas to help get you started.
Gather Your Material:
For your memory book, the first thing you are going to want to do is to enlist the help of as many friends and family of the guest of honor (GOH) as you can. Get an email list together and send a list of questions out to all of them, or ask for great stories that involve the GOH. Some examples of questions might be: tell us about how you met the GOH, what is the funniest thing he or she ever said or did, how he or she helped you through a rough time, etc. The idea is to get as many different anecdotes as possible, and if there is one great story, get some different perspectives on it. If the GOH has children, see of you can get them to do a drawing or write a poem.
The key here is to not be to rigid in what you expect from your contributors. Those who have a natural bent for writing should given free reign to contribute whatever they would like to, whereas those who busy or are hard to pin down can just give short answers to specific questions.
You should also ask for some great photographs from the past and present. You may have to encourage some people to scan photos that are not already in a digital format, or to send them to you via snail mail.
Putting it Together:
There are a few different ways you can go about this. You can either put the stories and pictures in chronological order of the GOH's life, or you can let each contributor have his or her own page, or you can divide the book into sections that were contributed by friends, family, children, etc.
When you are designing your pages, it might be a good idea to include clip art of the GOH's favorite hobbies, or items that are representative of what the story on that particular page is. If, for instance, someone is telling a story about a fishing trip, you can include clip art or images of fishing flies and rods, etc.
When you are putting your memory book together, keep fun in mind. Your GOH is going to be totally surprised, so depending on his or her personality, you may not want to do anything too embarrassing or tear-jerkingly poignant. Then again, you might. It all depends on the person. Just keep in mind that the book you are creating is something that you want the GOH to keep forever.
Printing and Binding:
When it comes to printing, you will probably want to make the pages as high quality as possible, so use a digital color printer if possible. There are lots of options for binding the book. "You can take it to the print and copy shop, send it away to one of many online services, or for less than one hundred dollars you can get a machine that will allow you to bind the book yourself. Thermal (hardcover) binding machines are really easy to use, and allow you to make as many copies as you want at a moment's notice. They are great to have around for other projects too, as well as repairing your old and worn out books.
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