It’s early morning, so early it’s not quite light yet. I’m sitting outside on our deck with a fresh cup of coffee. The birds begin to wake up and talk to each other. I start to see the outline of the trees in our backyard, and then I see all the flowers we planted last spring. They’re growing beautifully and reaching for the sky, ready for the sun. There is a purity in this moment. I close my eyes and enjoy it to the fullest. In my mind, I put away everything I should be doing and take just a few seconds to enjoy this moment.
The only thing missing is my loved ones, who are still sleeping. It occurs to me that not only do I want to share this moment with them, but that I could design moments like this specifically for them. Intrigued by the thought, I start to explore it. Why not do something intrinsically special for the people I love the most? I was on the verge of being a Memory Maker.
I wanted to create some wonderful moments for the most important people in my life—my wife, my two children, and my mother. It would mean making significant changes in my own schedule, but I realized I didn’t mind.
A special moment doesn’t have to be complicated—creating moments of time that not only were special by themselves, but also were the stuff of great memories. Simple is sometimes best.
I would not make any announcement, nor any grand declarations at a family meeting. No, I would just start being a student of my loved ones. What is it that would be special to them?
I had to start with my mother—she’d lived with the worst of me for the longest. I know she loved flowers, but ordering a bouquet of flowers and having it delivered is not a Memory Maker. It’s nice, but not nice enough. Her favorite flower is the daisy, and her favorite drink is lemonade. Somehow the two seemed to go together. We had daisies growing in our yard, and I could see a bouquet of daisies in some kind of lemon vase. I headed for the thrift store, where there was a plethora of oddities. While I didn’t find any vases that were lemony, I did find a lovely milk glass vase. She collected milk glass and I know she didn’t have one like this.
I gathered my daisies, filled the vase with water and then tied a note to the stem of one flower.
“I’m so glad you’re my mom.” Well, I never proclaimed to be a poet, but her being a mom and all, I knew she’d love it. I set it on her porch, rang the doorbell and ran away. Not as quickly as I liked, but then, she didn’t answer the door as quickly as she used to either. We were even.
After that, I began studying my wife and my children. I made notes. I made plans. I even made reservations. The more I studied them, the more I learned and I wondered how I’d never known these things before. These people were fascinating!
I started to invest myself in the people I loved, and as I started doing that, I found I was happier than I’d ever been. Happiness doesn’t just appear because we exist, happiness needs to be cultivated in order to grow. In fact, the happier they were, the happier I was because everything I invested in them, came right back to me plus interest. I didn’t know that was going to happen. I put it to you today—become a Memory Maker and create some happiness, for yourself, and for the those you love.