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You have finished filling out your family tree just in time for the holidays and are eager to share it with the rest of your family at the big get-together. But you want to offer a grand reveal more exciting than just papers sprawled across the kitchen table. You may even want to give your relatives their own tree to study, potentially encouraging further research.
Family trees are more than visual tools that illustrate who your ancestors were and to whom they are related. They are also often nice to look at, making them perfect for sharing with others. Below are some gift suggestions that not only allow you to share your family tree with those most likely to cherish it but also to preserve it for years to come.
1. Custom Wood Slice Family Tree
Sure, a family tree may not literally bloom, bear fruit and be lush, green and earthy. Nonetheless, this beautiful keepsake allows you preserve your family tree as though it had come directly from the earth. You can customize it to include ancestors’ names, birthdays and death dates. Who knows? You may even pique a relative’s interest to the point they embark on their own family research project, starting with just a name or two from the wood slice.
Keep in mind: just as is the case with families, no two trees are the same. As such, your wood slice might be knotted, warped and discolored in places. Consider that its own unique and imperfect story!
2. Create a Family Tree Book
Every person on your family tree lived a rich life, filled with joys, sorrows, struggles and triumphs. You may even have pieces of ancestors’ lives tucked away in boxes and photo albums—old wedding photos, hastily written recipes, introspective diary entries. All of these small artifacts offer a glimpse into the past. When brought together in one cohesive book, they can tell a wonderful story. And what better time to share that story than during the holidays, when the entire family gets together to reminisce over treasured memories?
There are several ways to approach organizing and creating a family tree book. You might dedicate one page to each generation represented on the tree—or you may give all ancestors their own pages complete with photos and personalized biographies. Your approach may depend on the materials you have to work with and the size of your family tree. For example, if you don’t have many photos to share, you may opt for a more narrative-driven book. If you are looking for inspiration, consider looking at our guide to creating a family history book. You can present the final product to your family in an elegant family history binder. That way, you can keep your sensitive photos, documents and other valuable materials in one archival—safe place.
3. Family Tree Picture Display
Perhaps you want to celebrate with your gift the expressive photos that your family has collected over the years—from the black-and-white snapshots of your great, great grandparents to the sleek digital prints of your own grandchildren. This practically designed display allows you to showcase your favorite photos however you see fit. Best of all, it would look great standing on a fireplace mantle or bookshelf all year long!
4. Custom Printed Family Tree
Finally, a printed family tree is a simple but excellent gift for sharing the gift of genealogy with those you love. Best of all, there are several ways you can go about printing a family tree; you can choose the option that best suits your budget, your needs and the nature of your tree. For example, if want to stick with homemade gifts this year, you could print the family tree at home. If you have accounts with the “Big Genealogy Sites” like Ancestry.com, FamilySearch.org, FindMyPast or MyHeritage, you can print a PDF of your family tree simply by logging into your account. You can then “beautify” your family tree in any way you desire—you could put together a posterboard display, create a wall poster or simply tape it together.
If you don’t want to undertake an entire project, you can always leave it to the professionals are order a family tree from one of many printing services available today. While a Google search will surely yield many viable options, we provide a list of printing companies in our own guide to printing a family tree.
We also offer some beautiful templates that you can easily download on your computer with Adobe. There are over twenty different template designs to choose from, so you may enough to gift to the entire family!
Last Updated: December 2023