Carpe Diem! Leap Year Day

1184183_spot_light_starsFebruary 29… what an exciting elusive day!  Because I like to celebrate everything, this whole extra 24 hours is the perfect set-up for intentionality to shape the day.  Don’t worry if you have to do a few “normal” things, just try to squeeze in as many opportunities as you can to remember this is no ordinary Wednesday!

When our kids were at home, we marked the uniqueness of each Leap Year Day by letting  everyone  order their favorite item for dinner…what a spread!  Afterwards, each of us filled out a brief questionnaire (parents helped the pre-writers) to create a Family Time Capsule, a written snapshot of the present.

Questions like:

  • What is your favorite activity?
  • What are you most grateful for?
  • What do you think you’ll be doing in 20 years?
  • If you had unlimited money to give away, where would it go?
  • If you had unlimited money to buy something, what would you buy?
  • Favorite food?
  • Favorite song?
  • Favorite TV show?
  • Favorite movie?
  • Favorite book?

We also added the front page of the newspaper, best seller list, top ten music charts, church bulletin, or anything else relevant to the family or the current culture.  The capsule, which can be a sturdy envelope, small box or chest, was then hidden away in a small unused cabinet behind our fridge and not disturbed until the NEXT Leap Year Day.  Four years later with much excitement, the fridge was pulled out, the door opened and the Time Capsule was retrieved, read, and then refilled and hidden away again.

My children are adults now and last night I emailed the questionnaire to them so they could use it if they wanted.  They may or may not be carrying on this tradition but I still am and will eagerly fill out my sheet and read the old ones starting with 1988.  Can’t wait to see what we all wrote 24 years ago!

Last Leap Year I decided to make the day memorable by visiting some of my favorite Chicago places all in one day.  Started at the beach, dropped by the Shakespeare Garden at NU, lunched at Chicago Botanic garden, and spent the afternoon at the Art Institute.   My fun tank overflowed!

This year I still have a bit of a gimp knee and will be an on-call Chaplain part of the day but I am heading somewhere to catch some beauty, see something extraordinary and create my own adventure.  If not now, when?

Hope to see you out there creating your own celebration!

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2 Responses to “Carpe Diem! Leap Year Day”


  1. 1 Kelly February 28, 2012 at 10:13 PM

    I love your thoughts on making the day special. Excited to make some memories with my family!

  2. 2 Karla February 28, 2012 at 10:43 PM

    I remember your time capsule! I guess I was around for 2 of them! Boy, I don’t know if I’m up to it, (been thinking tomorrow is March 1st!) but I think I will do some special food for everyone. I’ll make one of my famous King Cakes. After living so close to N’ollins (New Orleans,) we were in the habit, but this year I didn’t make one before Fat Tuesday. Lily said that since we’re not really Catholic, we can have King cake during Lent. (Just our family.) I used to make one for each child’s class and bring them hot. Not this year. But I’ll seize the day and make one since at least it’s still February! Thanks, Tish!


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