The final chapter

Dear Fellow Journalers,

… so begins MaryBeth’s final chapter on the Maroney Time Capsule Journal:

The Dedication Ceremony

     As you have probably guessed by now, we don’t do anything small – we are always looking for ways to incorporate our family values, capture the wonder of childhood and show our love for each other. When it came time to hide our time capsule, we didn’t want to just find a spot and hide it. We decided to have a small, memorable dedication ceremony. Over dinner one night (close to completion of the Time Capsule) we asked some questions of our kids and ourselves:

  • What made you choose to include_____
  • What memories do you hope to share with your future self by including ____
  • What part of making the Time Capsule did you enjoy the most?

When we finished our dessert (Maureen had progressed to cake baking by now and had earned her badge), we presented our children with their sealed letters and then we discussed where to hide our Time Capsule.

The Hiding Place

     Tim wanted to hide the time capsule outside but we dissuaded him. It rains a lot where we live and even though the “Box” was a heavy plastic bin, the contents could mold or decay in ten years’ time. We decided on the attic and carefully placed it near a rafter. My husband had made a label reading ” The Maroney Time Capsule – not to be opened until 2026.”

Tim was a little upset with our decision as his Time Capsule had been a decorated Popcorn can my husband had received from a client at work. We had almost finished off the last of the candy corn type so I had put the last bits in a Ziploc bag and cleaned out the inside of the can. He had decorated his with stickers and put it in his closet. But he cheerfully helped the rest of the family when it came to our decoration of The Maroney Time Capsule. We decoupaged ours with a collage of family items, copies of family pictures, drawings, awards, first driving license and pay check. We’d show it to you but we would have to climb over a lot of stuff to access it. Oh, and one final thought: put a note to yourself in your safe deposit box about the Time Capsule. Write down its exact location and when it is to be opened.

Ok, I know the final question you’re dying to ask is “Where did she put the journal?” …. and the answer is Inside the Time Capsule of course! Hope you enjoyed our Time Capsule Journal stories – now go make one of your own! M.B.

Thanks MaryBeth for your great perspective on the Time Capsule Journal!


Tools and Included items in the Time Capsule

Dear Fellow Journalers,

Marybeth continues the writing journey:

“When I first started writing The Time Capsule Journal”, I kept an ongoing list of important things to remember in the front cover. I wanted the journal to be more than a step-by-step diary of our lives. “So boring,” Tim said of my early attempts. So I started thinking and I decided to change things up a bit.

I knew that to be successful, this journal had to be written by all of us. I know what you are thinking – unusual undertaking. But the time capsule was about all of us, so why not have all of us write about it. Our first step was to make lists of all that had happened during the week. We used my template from Tim’s journal as an example. One week’s events were: Maureen’s attempt at baking biscuits (Girl Scout Badge), T.J’s letters from college, making a new friend. Sometimes we just wrote the event and a word or phrase to describe it. I sometimes couldn’t resist writing a short poem or a snippet of a song that the event’s memory triggered. John drew a picture or two and my husband captured as many events as he could on his trusty camera.

One thing we did without telling the kids was to write a letter to each of them. We wrote about what they were like right now, how much we loved them and our wish for them to be happy in their future. We then folded the letters, slipped them into envelopes with their names on them and sealed the flaps.  ( I sincerely hope that if you ever decide to make a family time capsule, you will do this! We know it will be a rewarding experience for you, as it will be for us in 10 years’ time!)

Then we decided to expand our journal and our Time Capsule by including some of the following:

title of favorite songs, Game Nights, Top 10 Memories, Each child’s age, height and weight, dreams of the future, current nickname, best friends, piece of wisdom to their future self, what a perfect day looked like.

In addition to the writing material, we included pictures of the house and their rooms, price list of things they liked to eat (fast food also), the front page of the local newspaper.

By now, the small box we had chosen was over-flowing so we searched around the house for a new one. We debated about getting 5 boxes for each of the children, but in the end decided on one. But the Maroney Time Capsule still had to be found and decorated. More on that project next week.”  M.B.

This is getting exciting!

‘Til next week,


Writing the Weekly Journal

Dear Fellow Journalers,

MaryBeth’s saga continues:

“I made some brief starts at the beginning because I really like to write about events and how I feel about what’s happening or is happening, as the case may be. I discovered that I needed to write at the end of the week and to gather together my regular journal, my calendar and the kid’s calendar. I took it one-day-at-a-time and wrote a phrase or a word to describe the event.

Some of the things I wrote about were activities the children were involved in such as the Class Debate, science projects gone horribly wrong, sledding accidents, Christmas presents, and of course there were a couple of adult adventures as well (meeting my new boss and getting lost in a snow storm with no cell service really scary!)

Next time, I’ll tell you about some tools I used to manage the journal writing. M.B.

Time Capsule Journal – Maroney style

Dear Fellow Journalers,

It had been awhile since I had heard from MaryBeth, so I sent her an email – you know the type “What’s up?” And life at the Maroney homestead has been , well eventful (deaths, job changes, accidents, awards, holidays, life!) Anyway, when I responded with the journal post schedule for the rest of the year she suggested that the Time Capsule Journal fit in perfectly with the events of the last year. “We actually made a Time Capsule”, she wrote me. “It was a school project last December, but we expanded on the theme and made it a family project. Let me share our journey with your readers.” So here is the story:

” Tim came running into the house one day before Christmas break. He was so excited about a class project that the teacher had assigned. “Mom.” he exclaimed, “we have to make a Time Capsule for class. I need a can and a shovel!” Well, after I read the teacher’s instructions, I realized that it was going to be more challenging than just finding a soup can. I brought up the subject at dinner that night and as usual the whole clan decided to make a family time capsule. I do have to admit, I was the only one who decided to write about it.

I asked Tim to tell his siblings what the teacher had told them about what a time capsule was. The teacher had introduced a book to the class entitled “Cartboy and the Time Capsule” by L. A. Campbell. She had explained that people made time capsules at all times of the year: back to school, New Years, new baby etc. She had given them a list of things that might go in their time capsules.

We decided to help Tim with his project first, and make The Maroney Time Capsule later. I wasn’t sure how to write about the adventure because a time capsule doesn’t describe your feelings only facts. Since Tim’s project was going to be a short-term event, I decided to write a weekly time capsule journal. Little did I know, that when we finally started our own, it was to become much more complicated.  More later….”   M.B.

‘Til next time,



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