Preserving the Chaos:: Creating Your Family’s Coronavirus Time Capsule

Preserving the Chaos:: Creating Your Family's Coronavirus Time CapsuleI would be telling you a gigantic lie if I denied the fact that I have spent the past few months of quarantine wishing away the year 2020 entirely. With each new month that greets us, another unexpected threat or worry presents itself and adds to the growing list of things that consume my thoughts at times. {What ‘cha got for us, September?!} But I keep telling myself that there are real life lessons to be learned during these trying times for us all and that not everything about 2020 has been terrible.

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine mentioned the idea of a memory box that she was putting together with her family to remember this unique time in history. It got me thinking about how cool it was to find letters from my grandfather during WWII after he’d passed away along with other cool pieces of historical memorabilia like newspaper clippings from that time, war stamps and photos. When my grandmother decided to keep those items for safekeeping, the world around her wasn’t exactly the epitome of calm and peace. There were both visible and invisible threats all around, just as we are experiencing right now with the Coronavirus and she, too probably couldn’t see beyond those trying times on the dark days when worry set in.  But she had enough forethought to save those pieces of history so that one day she and her family could take a stroll down memory lane to remember that time in history.

So I started thinking…what would I put in my own family’s “Coronavirus Time Capsule”? Here’s what made the cut with my family::

Coronavirus-Related Items::

  • Masks:  1 adult size and 1 child size
  • Hand sanitizer:  An empty mini size bottle of hand sanitizer to remember the true “liquid gold” during the ‘Rona.
  • Disinfectant wipes:  An empty container of disinfectant wipes to remind us of the days when we either wiped down our groceries, used them to assist us when opening doors, or used them to scrub down foreign objects while in public.
  • Bicycle figurine:  A mini “finger bike” to remind of us of the days when we weren’t wasting time each day commuting to and from work and extracurriculars and had time for nightly bike rides as a family.
  • Puzzle:  A mini puzzle to remind us of the days when we passed the time doing puzzles as a family.
  • Kitchen utensil & favorite recipe cards:  A small kitchen utensil of some sort {such as a mini-whisk} and recipe cards to remind us of the days when we cooked all of our meals at home and gathered around the table as a family each day.
  • Toilet paper:  Who could forget America’s strangest and most hoarded item of 2020?  We had to include a roll of it to remember just how weird the shortage was during the ‘Rona.
  • Alcohol:  Empty mini-bar bottles of wine and whiskey to remind us of the days when we got a little extra help from our friends, Robert Mondavi and Johnnie Walker to face the world.
  • Memes:  Who doesn’t love a good meme?! I think most of us can agree that the internet has been on fire with Coronavirus related memes in recent months. Our family printed off copies of some of our favorites to place in our time capsule. It will be interesting to see if the humor stands the test of time when we decide to open up our time capsule in the future. 
  • Photos: Several photos of our family taken during this time, including our “front porch photos”.

Companies and Brands We Relied On::

As a whole, my family has relied on so many different companies and brands to keep us going throughout quarantine.  So I decided to include all of them on a piece of paper with their logos and a quick one-liner about why our family relied on them during the ‘Rona.  The top few from our list include::

  • H-E-B:  Those of you who know me will not be surprised by this, but H-E-B has emerged once again as a true disaster relief organization that knows how to keep Texans going during times of great need.
  • Shipt:  We still do not go to the grocery store and rely 100% on grocery delivery for our weekly food supply.
  • Amazon:  Needs no explanation.  If it’s not on Amazon, you don’t need it.  Period.
  • Netflix & Disney+ Yeah, I know.  That’s two different companies, but they both served as part babysitter in the early days of us working from home and part mental escape from the heaviness of the world. Both highly valuable.
  • Home Chef Thanks to Home Chef’s meal delivery kits, we were able to keep cooking from home EVERY.DAY exciting and interesting instead of falling into the same ol’ rut of overused recipes each week.
  • Zoom: The video communication platform that became an overnight sensation in the world of education…and quickly wore us parents out!

Coronavirus Headlines::

2020 has been a year of Coronavirus headlines, and it was hard to narrow down to just a few.  So we decided to focus on the ones we found to be most interesting and relevant to our family, and printed out hard copies of the news articles for our Coronavirus time capsule.  They include:

Influential People Throughout the Coronavirus Pandemic::

Love them or loathe them, the individuals named below have a spot in Coronavirus history for our family. So we printed off pictures of them, wrote their names and why they were influential {either in a positive way or a negative way} and placed them in our Coronavirus time capsule.

  • President Trump
  • Vice President Pence
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci
  • Dr. Deborah Birx
  • Dr. Robert Redfield
  • Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
  • Governor Greg Abbott
  • Governor Andrew Cuomo
  • Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson

So there you have it…the complete contents of my family’s Coronavirus time capsule. When will we open it, you ask? I once had a college professor who said it takes at least 50 years after major events for history to be accurately written without political bias or prejudice. By my calculations, I’ll be 88 years old 50 years from now so I’m not sure that’s the wisest time frame for my family to use for this situation. So we have decided as a family to open it on the 25th anniversary of our family’s first day of quarantine from the Coronavirus, which will be March 13, 2045

Let me leave you with this insightful quote from the beloved Dr. Seuss as you consider what your family might include in your own Coronavirus time capsule. “Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory.”


Check out our COVID-19 Time Capsule for Kids for a great printable to add to this time capsule! 

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