Ask Aunt MO about Time Capsules

I have a question about making a time capsule. I want our family to make a time capsule at our family reunion this year but I’m not sure what we should put into the time capsule. Can you give me some more ideas for what to put into my time capsule?

Julie N.

Thanks for your question, Julie. I think you’re family will enjoy making a time capsule at your family reunion and I really think they will enjoy opening it in a few years. In my blog about time capsules I suggested that you add a newspaper to your time capsule. I think you’ll be surprised when you open the capsule to read what was going on in the world or your community at the time you made your time capsule.

You can also ask family members to write down their goals for the five years or ten years that will go by before you open the time capsule. Or write a letter to the future and tell the people what life is like for you now. Be sure and include your favorite family traditions, your worries and your joys too!


Memorabilia from your family reunion is another fun thing to put into your time capsule. Include your family reunion invitation and schedule of events. If you have contests such as a family reunion 5K be sure and list the winners.

Add photos to your time capsule. You can ask every family to bring a family picture or if you are close to a one hour photo developer you can take a family group picture of everyone at your family reunion and put that into the time capsule.


If you will only be storing your time capsule for five or ten years you may want to include a video messages from your family. Be careful about including a DVD for a long term time capsule, as fast as technology changes you may open the capsule and have nothing to play it on.

Get the children at your family reunion involved by cutting pictures out of a magazine showing the hottest toy of that year or the latest fashion trend. Just as we look back at the popularity of Strawberry Shortcake, Clackers, Tickle Me Elmo, Beanie Babies and Pokeman, these are items that are sure to be left behind in a few years and will be fun to remember when the time capsule is opened.


Leave out any substance that could decay and damage the other contents of the box. This includes rubber, wool, wood, PVC, and any perishable, liquid or edible item.

Mark everything clearly so you or others will know where each item came from and who included it when the time comes to open the capsule. Don’t assume you will remember all the details.

Good luck with your time capsule, Julie.

Aunt MO

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