I Forgot That You Existed

Why I Keep a Memory Box, How You Can Create One

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I Forgot That You Existed

Before I decided to buy a memory box, I kept all of my objects in the drawers of my desk and dresser or in folders. After a while, it piled up and for a couple of months, my intention was to buy a box of some sort to contain them all. Finally, after an impromptu trip to Michaels and an offer for photo boxes that I could not resist, I bought a memory box. 

Before I decided to buy a memory box, I kept all of my objects in the drawers of my desk and dresser or in folders. After a while, it piled up and for a couple of months, my intention was to buy a box of some sort to contain them all. Finally, after an impromptu trip to Michaels and an offer for photo boxes that I could not resist, I bought a memory box. 

photo by Estefani Rios

Before I decided to buy a memory box, I kept all of my objects in the drawers of my desk and dresser or in folders. After a while, it piled up and for a couple of months, my intention was to buy a box of some sort to contain them all. Finally, after an impromptu trip to Michaels and an offer for photo boxes that I could not resist, I bought a memory box. 

photo by Estefani Rios

photo by Estefani Rios

Before I decided to buy a memory box, I kept all of my objects in the drawers of my desk and dresser or in folders. After a while, it piled up and for a couple of months, my intention was to buy a box of some sort to contain them all. Finally, after an impromptu trip to Michaels and an offer for photo boxes that I could not resist, I bought a memory box. 

Estefani Rios, Editor-in-Chief

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I am a very forgetful person, lately more so. My memory range is strange. There are times that I remember random moments from my childhood, like the time I lied to my classmates and said my mom knew how to make Takis when she actually did not and there are also times in which I do not remember what I had for dinner. 

I am also a very sentimental person. I have always liked to keep knickknacks and mementos from different events in my life. For example, I have the need to keep every single, birthday card, Valentine’s Day card, Christmas card, etc. that has been gifted to me since the fifth grade. But the problem was that I always ended up losing them. 

The solution? A memory box. 

I have only used a memory box for about a year or so, but as I previously said, I tried to keep objects and cards that mean something to me for a couple of years. 

Before I decided to buy a memory box, I kept all of my objects in the drawers of my desk and dresser or in folders. After a while, it piled up and for a couple of months, my intention was to buy a box of some sort to contain them all. Finally, after an impromptu trip to Michaels and an offer for photo boxes that I could not resist, I bought a memory box. 

Traditionally, memory boxes are wooden, carved with a beautiful design or text and very expensive, but I’m an unemployed high school student, so that was not going to happen. I opted for a $5 box instead. 

This very inexpensive box took over my life very quickly. A couple of days after I bought the box, I gathered all of my cards, past school projects, ticket stubs and wrapping paper, yes,  old wrapping paper, and stuffed it all in the box. After that, as much as I wanted to continue adding things I stopped, did a bit of arranging to keep only the things, that truly meant something to me in that box, the rest would continue to reside in drawers, and proceeded to hide the box in my closet. 

Every now and then I take it out, open it and simply look through it. When I have a rough day or need some extra motivation, I immediately find the need to open it. 

Recently, I have outgrown the box, it reached its mass capacity and to be honest that is no surprise, so after another impromptu trip to Michaels and a deal that I could not resist…again, I bought my second memory box. 

Overall, my main reason to keep a memory box is NOT to hide my hoarder tendencies, as my dear sister likes to call it but to have a secure and accessible place to store cherished memories. I don’t need to ponder and try to remember memories from years ago or scroll through an endless sea of pictures on my phone, I simply open it and the moments come flooding back to me. 


Now, if a memory box sounds appealing, follow the next steps, it may sound somewhat intimidating, but it is really easy.

1. Buy a photo box, a traditional wooden memory box or use a shoebox. If you have a lot of mementos and things you want to keep, maybe consider a clear storage bin. 

2. If the cover of the box is plain, I would recommend creating a design on it. Paint, draw on it, create a collage with aesthetic pictures, whatever floats your boat.

3. Gather all your mementos, photos, cards, ticket stubs, awards and any other random stuff you want to include in the box. 

4. If you find that you have a lot of stuff, downsize a bit. Keep the things that you seriously cannot live without. 

5. Now place them in the box. It sounds simple, but I like to be thoughtful about the placement. Find a layout that works best for you. For example, I keep the objects that truly take me down memory lane and less fragile items towards the bottom. At the top, I usually have the most recent and fragile items. This way, when I look through the box it is set up in reverse chronological order. 

6. From this point on, you keep adding items and memories until the box is full. When it reaches its capacity, you make an impromptu trip to Michaels and start again.