Holidays are a good time to make memories with the people we love. They are a built-in reminder that the most important things are right in front of us. They also give us a break from typical day to day activities and are an excuse to show our love with time, gifts, and baked goods.

One tradition in our family is to make raspberry butter as gifts for friends and family. For years my mom, grandma, and I would spend messy hours in the kitchen preparing jars and jars of this sweet butter. In the last couple of years my mom moved out of state and my grandma doesn’t feel up to the task of being on her feet that long to cook (it really is a tricky process). But still, as Christmas rolls around I get excited to go shopping for all of the ingredients and jars, and to set up my kitchen for a wonderful mess. This year I got to share the tradition with my daughter who is 8 months old. She wasn’t much help, but I’m hoping that the tradition of our house filling with the smell of raspberries and sugar will be a sweet memory for her in the years to come.

As we take time this holiday season for those that we love it’s important to remember that we can show that love in so many ways. And in the years to come what we will have left are the memories we make together. So how do we make memories worth remembering? Think of some of your most fond memories over the years. Were they planned and carefully orchestrated? Maybe. Did some of them happen without any planning at all? Here are some helpful ingredients for making memories worth holding on to.


When I was at Utah State working on my undergrad I had the opportunity to live with three talented, creative, ambitious roommates. As you can imagine school is busy, especially as Christmas rolls around and you have finals to finish up. One of these roommates had the idea to do a roommate Christmas card that we could all send to our families. We all had a lot to get done for our classes, so we quickly tore through each other’s closets to find clothes and scarfs and we piled in a car to head to our destination place; an old bus stop. This wasn’t planned ahead of time and we were racing the sunset to get there and take the picture. After we got there and posed we each had to run off to others tasks that we needed to get done for school and work. 

Years later I’m grateful that we took the time together to make that memory. It wasn’t planned, elaborate, or even a lot of time. But we all decided to put down what we were working on to be together. It’s a memory I will always have with these friends that I love.

A Sense of Humor

My mom raised my brother and me on her own. She was a great mom and a hard worker. We didn’t have a lot of money but we always had a lot of love. I have memories on Christmas mornings opening gifts from my mom and from Santa. My mom would usually save up to give us each a toy or something we were asking for and Santa would give us socks and underwear. I grew up thinking that this was what Santa gave everyone.

It wasn’t until recently that I asked my mom about this and she told me that after working so hard she didn’t want Santa to get all the credit! She laughed as she told me this. And it makes me laugh now to think of her preparing gifts each year amused with herself while she wrapped up our socks from Santa.

People You Love

The memories that I cherish are filled with the people I love and the people who love me. I truly hope that your holidays are filled with those people who make your life interesting and fun. The best gift you can give is yourself. Take some time to be together with loved ones, relax, and have fun making memories!