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Tip of the Week - Family Time Capsule

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*Presented by Pauline Williams, USU Extension Agent***Containers


When choosing a container, consider the following:

  • Size, how many items do want in your time capsule
  • Storage, will you be burying the capsule outdoors? If so choose a metal rust resistant container. If you plan to store your capsule inside, plastic will work well.
  • Durability, how long does your container need to last?

Ideas for the container include:

  • #10 metal cans
  • Plastic ice cream containers
  • Metal cookie tins
  • 5 gallon buckets with lids

If you are not burying your container, you can decorate the container with paper, stickers, paint, or markers. Be sure to include a "Do Not Open Until _____" date on your container.

**Items for your Time Capsule


The items you put in your time capsule should reflect the time period when the capsule was created, your family’s activities, and an idea of what day to day life is like.

Here are some ideas:

  • Local newspaper
  • Photos of your family, home, car, possession, pets, etc.
  • Current music, movies, DVD’s, CD’s, tapes, or sheet music
  • Electronic devices such as PDA’s, cell phone, and disk drives. Note: the batteries on electronic devices may leak over time, so a picture and description of the item might be best.
  • Games your family likes to play together (Skip-Bo, UNO, monopoly, etc.)
  • Toys
  • Receipt for groceries to show the price of common foods such as milk and eggs; a letter showing income, mortgage, price of gas, etc.
  • Favorite family recipe
  • Ticket stubs from family vacations or outings
  • State quarters or new $20 bill
  • Items that reflect your religion
  • U.S. flag
  • Letters written by each member of your family sharing information such as age, your hope for the future, ideas for new inventions, where you think you’ll be in 10, 20, 50 years, your favorite activities/food/music/game/pet, etc.

Be sure to include the names and possibly signatures of all members making the time capsule. And don’t forget to include the date and time.



Your time capsule can be buried in the back yard, kept in a closet, or even built into a new wall of your home. Just make sure you leave information on how to find the time capsule and when to open the capsule.

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