October marks Family History Month, a time to celebrate those closest to us.
But how did Family History Month come to be? According to Family Tree Magazine, in 2001, Congress passed a resolution introduced by Senator Orrin Hatch, who wrote:
“By searching for our roots, we come closer together as a human family.”
Since then, people have continued to celebrate their family roots throughout the month of October.
From sharing old family heirlooms passed through generations to creating new family traditions, there are many activities to spend time with your family this October. Below, we outline ways you and your loved ones can celebrate Family History Month with these fun-filled family activities.
1. Ask Questions and Tell Stories
Each family has its own unique history. A simple way to honor your family history and bring all members closer together is to ask questions. Not only will this bridge the generation gap, but it will allow younger family members to understand what life was like for those who came before them.
Some questions to spur conversation, include the following:
- When and where were you born?
- How did your family come to live there?
- What’s your earliest childhood memory?
- Did your family have any special traditions?
- Are there any heirlooms that have been passed down to you?
Once you’ve exhausted this list, brainstorm your own—or check out these family conversation topics for around the table. This is a simple exercise to kickoff Family History Month on the right note and uncover facts about loved ones you may not have known.
2. Share Photos
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. This October, take time to preserve and protect old photos, memories and keepsakes.
Scrapbooking can be a fun and easy activity for the whole family. Have each family member design his or her own page(s). With each passing year, you can add to the albums for future generations to cherish.
Or, simply sit down with family members to look through old photo albums and keepsakes. This can help uncover old wedding photos, relive family vacations or visualize loved ones you never met.
3. Cook a Favorite Family Recipe
Nothing brings people together like good food. Whether dining in or out, some of life’s fondest memories come while enjoying a meal with the people we love.
This Family History Month, cook a favorite recipe passed down from generations or a traditional meal from your heritage. Ask yourself, what makes this dish so special? If there’s a reason for this dish being a family favorite—other than it being delicious—share that story with loved ones.
If there’s a compilation of favorite recipes, create a family cookbook for loved ones to enjoy well after October.
4. Plan a Trip
Nothing says fun like a family adventure, so plan a trip this October.
Whether you go out of state, or around the corner, be sure to visit sites of importance to your family. This could be the place where you grew up or the country where your extended relatives reside. Wherever it is, incorporate meaningful family traditions throughout.
Tip: Road trip? Pack a deck of conversation cards to pass the time!
And when the end of October nears, take time to reflect on the memories made. What was your favorite activity? What’s something you learned in the last month? Share with us in the comments below.
As a fourth-generation family owned and operated funeral home, we believe that family matters. All too often, life gets the best of us, and we forget to engage in important conversations with our loved ones that teach us what makes them so special. That’s why we invite you to request a deck of conversation-starting cards to keep a rich conversation going with your family.
Image credit: Pixabay