DEAR ABBY: My parents are approaching their 80s, and I'd like to recommend to seniors that a cherished gift to their children and grandchildren would be a journal or family history book written by them describing their childhood memories and early married years. So many funny stories and historical markers of an earlier time -- before computers and fax machines -- will be lost if they're not shared.
Children and grandchildren can be given the chance to see through your eyes and your memories what their aunts, uncles and grandparents were like, and you can laugh together at the silly things that happened when you were young.
The family history can be passed from one generation to the next, and I cannot think of a more special gift. -- CHARLENE IN CAMARILLO, CALIF.
DEAR CHARLENE: That's a splendid idea. However, I would urge children and grandchildren to not wait for the family history, but to interview their parents and grandparents now, with pencil in hand. Better yet, if possible, use a video recorder.