Checking Up

Time Capsule

Do you ever wish your grandparents had documented the events that shaped their lives? Wouldn't it be interesting to understand the entrepreneurial links between you and your determined, refugee great-grandmother or the wacky great-uncle who invented odd gizmos in the basement? Here are several ways to turn your parents' memories into a family legacy:

1. Ask your parents to write about 10 or so turning points in their lives. The finished stories can be duplicated, bound and given to family members.

2. Organize letters and memorabilia in a scrapbook or a series of folders, separated into categories such as "Special Letters," "Cherished Pictures," "People Who Influenced Me as a Child" and the like.

3. Let them tell their stories on audiotape or videotape. You'll not only get memories but sounds and images you'll treasure. Grandchildren can get involved by interviewing their grandparents on tape.

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This article was originally published in the March 1997 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Checking Up.

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