Serving Western Wisconsin
Ways to Remember and Honor

Ways to Remember and Honor

By Chaplain Julia Rajtar, MAPS, BCC

A woman’s mother recently died, and she was asking for some ideas on ways to remember and honor her mother, on her birthday.   We discussed her mother, who she was, and what she valued.   Based upon the daughter’s description of her mother, we developed a few ideas, one idea was to make a donation in her mother’s memory, toward an activity that was meaningful to her mother and would allow other young women to learn.   This idea seemed to capture the essence of her mother, and in death, her mother’s memory and spirit, could care for, educate and assist others.   Another person created a scholarship in their father’s name, to go toward high school graduates in the community where her father lived and where she grew up, who were interested in pursuing the trade her father found most meaningful.  He was never able to finish school, in his death, he could assist others to do so.

Purposefully Remembering and Honoring

Here are some other ideas for purposefully remembering or honoring a loved one that has died – for their birthday, special holidays, the anniversary of their death, or whenever you feel like it!

  • Plant a memory garden
  • Make a memory CD of their favorite songs
  • Engrave their initials or photo into a piece of jewelry or keychain
  • Take and frame photographs of their favorite things or places
  • Write a poem or lyrics
  • Have their clothes made into a quilt
  • Journal
  • Consider having belt buckles inserted into wood for a memory box
  • Make plans to do something they enjoyed (biking, baking, picnic, attend a concert, play or sporting event, karaoke, etc)
  • Get a tattoo (henna or real) in their memory (remember if you put their name, people will likely ask you about them)
  • Make or bake their favorite food
  • Carry a small treasure of theirs in your pocket
  • Name a star in their honor (
  • Make a memory stepping stone
  • Create a key chain from things that were meaningful (jewelry, fishing lures or bobbers)
  • Paint pottery (
  • Create a memory book with photos, poems, quotes, etc
  • Have a bottle etched in their memory
  • Volunteer in their honor

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