No matter where life leads you, you will always remember your high school years, especially your senior year. As your children approach their own graduation, encourage them to preserve their memories to look back on later. It's important to begin sometime before graduation, as the time directly before and after is usually pretty busy with other things.
There are many ways to preserve high school memories, and photo albums and scrapbooks are popular choices. Pinterest is filled with pictures, tips, and links to inspire, begin, and complete various scrapbooking projects. Many stores, such as Wal-Mart and Walgreens, allow you to upload pictures online and pick them up in store. Don't worry if most of your pictures are on a cell phone. Most photo printing kiosks have slots for many kinds of memory cards, even those tiny ones that live in your phone. You can even access, edit, and print your Facebook pictures from many kiosks as well.
Stores with craft sections and craft stores carry scrapbooking supplies and have staff knowledgeable in that area. You can add your own pages, borders, stickers, stamps, or fabric swatches to your album or scrapbook. Although a scrapbook gives you more room for those types of embellishments, albums are best for collecting pictures. Don't forget sports, play or musical programs, as well as ticket stubs or even fabric scraps from old uniforms or costumes. The scrapbook can be as ornate or as simple as you want just as long as you and your teen enjoy the process.
If you feel you are not crafty enough, or you lack the time, you can always let Shutterfly or similar websites create a photo book for you. Many websites that print your pictures often create more than albums, but coffee mugs, framed prints, or even blankets using your pictures. Shutterfly and Wal-Mart are two such sites. All you need to do is choose the pictures and the final project, and they will do all the rest.
If your teen has collected ticket stubs from sporting events, plays, or movies, an easy way to store and display them is to put them in a clear glass jar or vase. You can just lay them in the jar or use Mod Podge or glue to stick them to the outside or even the inside.
Another idea is saving uniform or club shirts and making a t-shirt quilt, scarf, tote bag, or pillow case. After all, the shirts will not fit forever and will eventually wear out, but that doesn't mean you need to throw them away. Making them into something useful will not only preserve the memories but is environmentally friendly as well. Pinterest is loaded with ideas on how to upcycle old shirts into many items. It's also a good place to find instructions, though an easy trick for a t-shirt quilt is to take an old comforter and sew the squares cut from the old shirts on. It's a simpler alternative to actual quilting and a good way to ease into sewing. The same technique can be used for making pillows; use an old throw pillow and sew the t-shirt square directly onto it or a pillow case. Just remember to make sure the stitches are sew tight, so the items can be washed and used.
Whatever projects you and your teen choose, remember to have fun and let them express themselves. Having tangible reminders of the friends they made in high school will encourage them as they go forward in their future plans. Congratulations, Class of 2018, we wish you all the best!