Sunday, February 28, 2010

Family Memory Game

A few weeks before last Christmas I decided that I absolutely NEEDED to make Family Memory Games for my kids AND the kids in our extended family.

You know how when you are just going along, minding your own business, and all of a sudden an idea hits you and you HAVE to do it? And there's just no getting around it?
That's what happened. I wish this idea had struck me in July, because then I would have been able to complete the project at a leisurely pace. Instead, I was up all hours of the night figuring out all the little details and printing and cutting and gluing and laminating and cutting some more. But I'm so glad I did it. I absolutely love my finished products.

I customized each family's game so that it matched them.

It's like this:
For Peyton and Ella's Family Memory Game I included pictures of us, all their grandparents, all their aunts and uncles, and all their cousins. I tried to have Peyton and Ella in as many pictures as possible - like a picture of Peyton with his cousin Jack instead of just a picture of Jack. To bring it on home, you know?

But then for cousins Noah and Hayden's Family Memory Game, I had their mom, my sister-in-law, email pictures of her side of the family. So she sent me pictures of Noah and Hayden's grandparents and aunt and uncle from her side. And then I combined those with pictures of grandparents and aunts and uncles and cousins from our side. Because this game is all about each child's family, not just my side of the family.

And I tried to make sure that each person was equally represented - I didn't want five pictures of Peyton and only one picture of Ella, that sort of thing.

I made 16 pairs of photos for my games. I wasn't thinking about how to make a perfect game square with all the finished laid out cards. So if you want a perfect game square, you will want to make 18 pairs. And the picture below only has 15 pairs because my kids have stolen a couple pictures for their rooms.

Here's what you will need:

18 Sets of double-printed pictures

Pretty scrapbook paper

2 Colors of matching cardstock

Paper cutter
(you can use regular scissors if you want to be a cutting martyr)

Regular scissors

Scalloped-edge scissors

Glue stick

(what? how did that get in there?)

Acrylic box
(mine is 4" x 4" x 2" from Hobby Lobby)

An extra little photo of each family member
(for the game box lid)

4 Glue dots

The Memory Cards:

Cut with Paper Cutter:
Pretty scrapbook paper to 2.5" x 2.5".
One color of cardstock to 2.5" x 2.5".
The other color of cardstock to 2.25" x 2.25".

Drink a glass of wine while you cut your paper. Because you will most likely be cutting for HOURS. (optional)

Glue Stick:
The 2.5" cardstock squares to the back of the scrapbook paper squares. This will make the memory cards sturdier.
The 2.25" cardstock squares onto the 2.5" cardstock squares.

Cut with Scalloped-Edge Scissors:
The photos along the outside edge. You just need to trim enough so that you can see the smaller cardstock underneath when you glue them together.
(I used my iphoto program and printed my pictures to size 2.25" square. If you can't do that, print them as small as possible and cut them into 2.25" squares. As you choose pictures, remember that you'll be cutting them - super big faces won't work - unless you want a memory card with two eyes and part of a nose.)

Glue Stick:
The photos to the small cardstock squares.

Here's the front (large blue cardstock, small green cardstock, picture):

Here's the back (scrapbook paper):

Comparison Shop and Travel:
Find the cheapest laminating service around. I found that the companies that used large laminating machines (at least 3 feet wide) were more inexpensive than the companies that used smaller machines (8.5" x 11" laminated sheets). For all the cards for the multiple families that I had laminated, it cost me about $12. All of these are on a single laminated sheet:

Cut with Regular Scissors:
The laminated memory cards. Laminated corners can be sharp, so I recommend rounding them a little with your scissors.

The Box:

Print from Computer:
Some sort of title. I used "Peyton and Ella's Family Memory Game" for ours.

One color cardstock to fit the inside of the lid.
The scrapbook paper a little smaller than the cardstock.
The second color of cardstock a little smaller than the scrapbook paper.

Cut with Scallop-Edged Scissors:
The title a little smaller than the second color of cardstock.

Glue Stick:
It all together.

Drink a glass of wine because you are almost done! Yay! (optional)

Cut (A 1-inch circle punch works well, but if you don't have one, just use scissors):
The extra little photo of each family member.

Glue Stick:
The photos to the top of your title.

Glue Dot (Notice how I totally made that into a verb? Awesome):
Stick the glue dots in the corners of the inner part of the lid. Stick the title in.

All done! Time to play and have fun!

Happy Crafting!


Ali Richardson said...

You forgot to put the "wine drinking" step in there somewhere. I was waiting to see where you were able to fit it in during all of the hard work :)

Amy said...

I would probably use a smaller-print or solid paper to keep my nerdy kids from memorizing the backs ;-)

Darcy said...

Ha Ha Ali! You pay attention! I'll go back and revise it. :)

Kimara@weefolkart said...

I love this idea. I use to do this with my preschool classes. Children loved it when they would turn over their own pictures... it was always part of the quest. I'll be linking on Facebook :)

Eli said...

Can't wait to do mine!
great idea indeed and I got here thru weefolkart

Dena Davis said...

I got here through weefolkart, too. Love this idea! Thanks for the detailed step by step directions and accompanying photos. Great gift idea!

4kidsgrandma said...

The cards are awesome, Darcy, and will be cherished by the kids forever!

Tiffany said...

How awesome! I love this idea. I found your blog from Parent Hacks and I am subscribing to your feed today! You have such great ideas! Thanks for sharing!

Carla said...

I can't stand are truly amazing! When do you sleep, clean your house, do your laundry, cook and all the other chores of life???? Are you secretly Superwoman? What a gorgeous idea! I wish I lived near you so I could hire you for the preschool I want to open one day!

Darcy said...

You are all so sweet - thank you!

Carla - wait, I'm supposed to clean my house, too? Seriously, you made my day! :)

Jenn said...

Hi! Just wanted to say that I love your blog & I especially like this project for Easter. I’ve featured you on my blog here:
I hope you’ll stop by. You can get my new featured button on the top left hand side of my blog. I also have a McLinky party called Tot Tuesdays if you'd like to join.
Cheers, Jenn

Match The Memory said...

There is a similar game that you can build yourself on a web site called You upload your pictures and choose fonts and colors, and the site does all of the work to create cards with your personalized text.

But it's not just for printing your custom memory game -- anyone can also play the game online. There are cute sound effects, and you can add a specific message that pops up with each match. My young daughter loves to play the games and find the photos of her friends and family members.

Evie's Tool Emporium said...

I wish we would have had this fun game when I was a child! It would have helped me remember all my cousins names! There are so many of them! Wonderful idea!

TMCPhoto said...

great idea! I did something similar last summer for our road trip. Because the Peanut was still 2 I made the cards using magnet sheets and the matching game was for bugs, we put it in a little tin that opened up and made a game board so the cards didn't go flying whenever we turned a corner.

Paula said...

What a great idea!

Nettie said...

Fabulous idea ... i'm starting one for my nephew today!!!


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