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Family History Blocks

Last year, I made some cute wooden blocks (pictured on the left) for my mantel to spell out the word Harvest for my fall decorating. It was a simple task using a 2×4 cut to different sizes, scrapbook paper, mod podge, paint, and vinyl letters. It quickly became one of my favorite holiday decorations. So simple and easy.

I recently ran across a similar idea here that can be duplicated easily using these same simple supplies, a little creativity, and not a lot of money. The best part is, the idea is taking wooden blocks and displaying family history on them! The link above provides a template if you sign up for their site, but you can also use this same idea and create your own template or think of some variations of this same idea.

I have blogged before about creating an ancestor wall in your home where you display pictures of ancestors. But, what if you don’t have the space? Or, what if you want to create a gift for someone that they can display in their home? This is a perfect solution. One advantage to creating these family history blocks is that you can make as many as you want and display them at different times. Pack them away, or leave them out all year. Another great advantage to these blocks is that you can add dates, names, and information to them right along with the photo. This is not done as easily on a wall display.

Start by thinking about what kind of information you’d like to put on your blocks. Grandparents are a good start. Usually, you have the most information on them. Pick scrapbooking paper that either matches your home decor, or fits well with the photos. After getting the blocks cut to the sizes you want (many hardware stores will do this for you), all you need is some mod podge, copies of the photos (never use the originals), scrapbooking paper, and the information you want to display.

While the blocks in the link I posted are made from a template, you don’t have to use one. If you have good handwriting, you can easily write names and dates on cute scrapbooking paper, and mod podge this to the blocks as well. If you have a cricut, or similar vinyl cutting machine, you can simply cut vinyl letters and add them to the blocks. Mod podge will dry clear, so don’t be afraid to take a paint brush and spread mod podge right over the pictures and paper!

If you don’t want to spend all the time cutting out scraps of paper for all sides of the blocks, think of using a coordinating paint color and painting your blocks like I did on my Harvest blocks. Just concentrate on the front of the blocks to save time.

Think of making a set of blocks for your baby’s room of yourself as a baby with your parents. Any child will love handling these blocks and you don’t have to worry about them getting messed up!

Or, think of making some blocks featuring wedding pictures of yourself, along with a block with your wedding announcement to display in your home, or give as a wedding gift to someone else with their announcement and photos.

I just love this idea and can’t wait to make some for my own home. The possibilities are endless!

Meredith Ethington is the author of this blog. To learn more about Meredith, and her history with Scrapbooking and Genealogy, go here.

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