To pass on knowledge, possession or a skill to the younger generation.
We hand down stuff all the time. On a daily basis we hand down our advice, our thoughts, stories, memories our opinions.
Sometimes we are not in control of the things we hand down, they are part of the DNA makeup that we have passed on. From the way you smile or laugh to the skills and interests your children have, they have been handed down from you, from your parents, your grandparents. Whilst each person is unique, we are still sewn into a long line of design. From your inability to listen to music and productively work at the same time (I can’t do both and neither can my son) to your love for the outdoors, often we like what we like because of a genetic passcode that has been handed down to us.
Passing down things is a big part of EsmeLoves. The notion that we want to connect with people who have gone before (and will come after us) is inherent to how we place ourself in the world. We live in a world where everything is moving online and become tidier and more compact. The things I remember from my childhood, looking at photo albums in my Grandparents loft, sifting through my Dads old school text books all gave me an insight to the family and generations that went before me.
How will our grandchildren in the future gain insight into our lives?
Below is a top 7 list of things we are known to pass down.
1: Nursery rhymes
You might not remember many of the nursery rhymes sung to you as a baby but your mum and dad do. It was only when I had my own children that my mum had a chance to remind me of the songs she would sing to me. She sang them to my children and I will no doubt sing them to my Grandchildren (just writing that has aged me) but it is so lovely to pass on little rhymes and songs.
What was your favourite meal growing up? Perhaps it was a cake your Grandmother would make? Taste is one of the big 5 senses and so we associate taste with memories and moments. It is not just about liking the food, it is the memory that goes with it. The Sunday afternoon tucking into your Mum’s best roast potatoes or visiting your Grandmother and eating her amazing cake (and loving the fact she sneaks you an extra big slice). You will have a dish that brings up memories, think about the food your children will remember.
3: A piece of jewellery
Jewellery is such a personal thing. It can often have very little monetary value yet be the most precious thing you own because of the person who wore it before you. Jewellery is such a wonderful thing to hand down because it can be timeless and a way to carry a little reminder with you everyday. Of course there are the big pieces like engagement rings and diamond sets but it can also be the simple everyday pieces that your mum or Grandmother wore that can mean the most.
4: Your parenting skills
Do you ever find yourself talking to your children and thinking ‘gosh, I sound just like my mum‘ I usually find this when I am in the middle of breaking up a sibling bicker or telling my children for the umpteenth time to put on their socks. Whatever comes out of my mouth sounds very familiar to how my mum would speak to me and my sister as children. They do say we eventually turn into our parents but how we parent our children can influence how in turn, your children will parent their own offspring.
We live in such a consumers world and fashion has become cheaper and cheaper on the high street, however it is worth becoming more conscious about what you buy and how much you pay for it. If you are anywhere in the age bracket of late 30’s (coughs loudly) then you will no doubt find yourself saying when you see latest fashion trends ‘oh i used to own a pair of those when I was 14′ or ‘ I wore that in my 20’s’ What goes around, comes around and it is the same with fashion. Invest in some really classical pieces that you know you can hand down to your daughter or son at some point.
I am worried for books, truly. I am scared that books will soon lose their place on the shelf. I am a ‘book’ person. I have tried to read on a device but I can’t. I love books and will always keep a good book. Passing on books to your children that you have read or played an important part of your life is a way of connecting with them. Perhaps it is a hobby you had an interest in or a book that shaped the way you lived. Perhaps a children’s book you loved or it was the first book you read to them. Keep books. Pass them on.
Do you keep a journal? Darwin, Einstein, Da Vinci were just a few of the huge historical names who kept journals and we have been able to determine so much about them over the years from the notes they kept. You might not think you have anything to write but daily or weekly journalling can allow you to write down the little things which you will forget over the months and years, which can be so lovely for someone special to read in years to come. Perhaps you can write letters for your children to read when they are older. Include lots of lovely things about them as they are now, which can be an amazing trip down memory lane for them when they are grown and something they might want to pass on to their children.
The act of passing something on is timeless. In world where we are bombarded with so much information and advice from everyone and everywhere it is so important to remind ourselves of the really important things we want to remember and what we want to be remembered for.
What are you passing on down?
What can you add to the list?
I would love to hear so please leave your comments below.