Making Memories: A Guilt-free Approach!

I am a little obsessed about the idea of making memories with my family.  I think it started when I was young. My mom and I would go out of town shopping for the day, and we would find some unique place to eat.  And while we were sitting there talking, she would say, “We’re making a memory!”  

And she was right!  I loved those little outings and finding unusual places to dine!

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photos of families making memories

The idea of making a memory carried over into my marriage.  My husband and I were on our way back from our honeymoon late on a Friday night, when we got hungry. So we stopped to eat.  Knowing that this would be the last meal of our Honeymoon, I wanted it to be special!  

So, I started trying to think of places that we could go that would be a nice way to end our honeymoon.  The problem was, it was almost midnight and we were in a pretty rural area!  

So, my new husband, more concerned with his empty belly than making a memory,  pulled into the Waffle House and I almost burst into tears! That was one of our first….. (ahem!)… disagreements as married folks. Let’s just say we definitely made a memory

Of course, making memories involves a lot more than food! (Although that is one of my favorite ways to make memories). We can find little ways to make memories with our family every day!

family huddled for photo

Charles Swindoll says, “ Each day of our lives, we make deposits in the memory banks of our children.”  This hit me hard!  

What kind of deposits have I been making?  Often I give my children a distracted, irritable mother with too much on her plate (my own fault!).  How can I change that?

Start With Your Heart

Well, for me, I believe it all starts with “Seeking first the Kingdom of God”! It’s really difficult for me to give my children a fun, memorable childhood if I am constantly stressed and unfocused!

Spending time with God is where this focus starts for me, but I struggle SO much to wake up, read my Bible and pray. This has been a lifelong struggle, but my need for Jesus has only grown as I’ve had children!

Starting my day with God makes everything else run a little smoother and sets my priorities for the day!  It sets my heart in a right place so that I can take on the day in the light of God and His guidance!

However, if I don’t get up early enough to read (which is sadly often the case), I can still start my day by praying and asking God to guide me as I raise these little humans! Check out my post about putting God first here!

Be Intentional

Having many young children, I often feel guilty for being distracted.  Distracted by making dinner, distracted because of money worries, distracted over a disagreement I’ve had with my husband…. And when I get really overwhelmed…. I lose myself in my phone or a TV program just to get away from my worries

Children don’t have to have 100% of our attention all of the time. In fact, I think it’s pretty important that they don’t grow up thinking that we will drop everything each time they want us to reach a toy that is placed up high or sit with them in the floor anytime they want to play.  

mom and son making memories by spending quality time together

However, it is important that we stop when they are talking & make eye contact with them.  (Sometimes this can be hard when you have a kid following you around the kitchen while you cook telling you, in great detail, about each of the Lego superheros!).  

It’s also important that we try to converse with them about the things that matter to them….. Even if it is legos! Being intentional can mean just taking a few minutes each day to be available to your children.  Or maybe, initiating a conversation as you drive along. I have found that even my big boys that are getting close to me in size, still like to sit in my lap and get a little mom-time!


Memory making doesn’t have to be elaborate!  I LOVE family traditions!!! But making memories is something that happens every day, it can be as simple as Taco Tuesday or the kids helping to  make the dessert one night a week!

mother and children making memories baking together

The more simple that you keep it, the more likely you will do it!  And what happens is you get overwhelmed and drop the ball?  Nothing… your kids will likely remind you!  And if they don’t?  Maybe that wasn’t something that wasn’t something worth putting your time into! Don’t try to add a lot of new activites or rituals to our routine, that will only cause stress!

Occasionally, my so will say, “Can we go sit on your bed and talk?” This started several years ago when he was upset about something and we retreated to my room to get away from everyone!  Now, with 3 other kiddos in the house, I see this as a request for some time with mom. This is a pretty simple activity, but I believe it’s one he will remember when he gets older!


In our world of social media, everything can turn into a competition!  Making memories is unique and special to your own family! This isn’t necessarily an idea you got from Pinterest (although there are many and I love looking thru them), or something that you would post to Facebook!

Making memories is doing something meaningful for your family.  And isn’t that what makes it special? What makes it memorable is what makes your time together different from every other family around.  

making memories quote

Don’t Forget Those Special (and Funny) Times

So making memories aren’t necessarily traditions.  Making a memory can be something funny that one of your children said that you treasure!  Like once, one of my boys started singing, “Mama’s don’t let your babies grow up to be pickles”!  We laughed so much at that and I knew that I wanted to remember it!

So I after several years of feeling like I was forgetting all of the memorable things that my kids had done, I started keeping a list that I keep on my phone of the sweet or funny thing that my kids say or do that I want to remember. One day I plan to make these fun quotes and some sweet pics into a photo book.

family photos on a table

Making Memories with our families should really be something that occurs naturally in our daily lives.  If we keep our mom hearts encouraged, plug into our lives instead of zoning out, and keep things simple and unique to our own family’s personality and likes!  And if the end, making memories has so much more to do with the relationships we build as a family and the love we show to each other!

What are some of the ways your family makes memories?  Please take a minute to share with us in the comments below! 

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