How To Create Lasting Memories in Your Sim’s World

Memories can transform houses into homes, save files into living-breathing worlds, and families into legacies. Sometimes the possibilities to collect memories directly in The Sims can feel limiting though. I’m going to share how to come up with new memory keeping ideas and explore creative ways to honor the passing of time in the worlds of our pixel people.

Listen to this episode if:

  • You want your Sim worlds to feel more alive and real.
  • You need inspiration on how to collect memories of your pixel people directly in the game.
  • You want fun ideas on how to use photography, art and books in The Sims.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

3 Questions to Ask Yourself When Choosing In-Game Memory Keepers

To determine how to collect memories within the possibilities of our favorite life sim games, I asked myself three questions:

1. What kind of moments would your pixel people or their community want to cherish?

There are plenty of milestones worthy of documenting in the game. Rites of passage, such as birthdays, marriages and deaths, are definitely Simmer favorites to collect. Of course, you’ll also want to keep record of growing families or personal milestones, such as starting a business or attending prom. Sometimes overlooked, but also log-worthy are community-related happenings, such as the opening of an important space or town gossip.

2. What craft-making skills or objects exist in the game that allow you to create fully customized results?

Woodworking is limited to pre-made objects, so not ideal. Anything that allows you to put your own spin on it, for example with custom text or an image, is what we need.

3. What can last over time in the game and is accessible to the Sims and can be passed on?

As a rule of thumb, look for objects that can be stored in the inventory of your Sims. These generally can be passed on. That’’s not all though. It’s also key that the items don’t deteriorate or disappear over time. Grandma’s famous pie? No deal.

These 3 sets of criteria help you brainstorm creative ways to save memories within the possibilities of the game, whether you be playing The Sims or another life sim game. In most cases, photography, art and books fulfill all three criteria and lend themselves well for memory keeping in the game. Here are some ideas to inspire you:

Create Everlasting Memories With Photography

Photography can capture treasured memories and create a visual narrative of your Sims’ lives. They are portable and – so long the game isn’t being buggy – last forever. Here are a few ideas to inspire you:


  • Photo of old home before moving
  • Photo of kid on their first day of school
  • Before and after photos for makeovers or room/home renovations


  • Photo for the (imaginary) family Christmas card
  • Photo of Harvestfest dinner with the entire family

Candid snapshots:

  • Have a Sim take a candid snapshot of another Sim in their element, for example their partner creating art, their kid playing, or grandma cooking her famous pie.
  • Take a snap of a meaningful object, for example a wedding cake, the microwave that unalived the dad or a broken toilet after an angry poo.

Use Artwork to Tell History

Art can beautifully encapsulate the essence of your Sims’ stories. I was a bit stumped at what is actually possible in the games. Feel free to comment below if you have anymore ideas.

  • In The Sims 3, your Sim can craft an ice sculpture in the likeness of another Sim. Pretty cool.
  • In most life sim games, your pixel person can paint a portrait of another Sim or a scene in the world. This is, next to photography, one of the most straightforward ways to capture a memory.

Memory Keeping With Story

Telling stories is at the heart of the Sims experience. Books are a great way to embed memories into the game. Storytelling mods also exist that can help you add significance to in-game items:

Book ideas:

  • Write a book series, for example an encyclopedia collection about the history of your Sim’s world.
  • Write a biography or autobiography.
  • User the Book of Life to save the essence of a Sim so they can be resurrected.
  • The Ink For Yourself Memory Keeper Mod by Ravasheen is an excellent way to collect memories in book form. This mod is a journal your Sim can fill with journal entries, including custom titles and descriptions. Here are some ways it can be used:
    • As a diary
    • To collect save file history (I made recolors of the mod that make the book look historical)
    • The little black book of a romantic sim
    • Burn Book of a gossip girl
    • Club notes
    • Keepsakes log with details about items and the safekeeper of a designated keepsakes box (If you don’t have the The Sims 4 Growing Together expansion pack, I recommend the Hoarders Sim-Nonymous Mod by Ravasheen, which lets you store objects in various containers.) 

Mods that can hold story:

  • With the Life Notes Mod by Lumpinou, you can save notes about a Sim during their life directly from within the Sim panel. Once they’ve passed, these notes survive and can be placed in any inventory or stored in a keepsake box.
  • It’s All Grave-Y by Ravasheen let’s you customize a Sim’s grave, add them to a plaque and engrave with an epitaph.
  • The Better of Birth by Ravasheen lets you add a Sim to a birth certificate or ultrasound.

There are quite a few possibilities for creating and collecting memories within the game. Considering the three questions outlined above, I’m sure you’ll come up with many more. Whether through photography, artwork, or storytelling objects, you have quite a few options. Let this inspire you to take the time to collect more memories in the game.


[00:00:00] Gloria from Yellow Llama Co.:

Welcome to Sentimental Simmer, a podcast made for emotionally attached Simmers and storytellers with wild imaginations. I’m your host Gloria and I run Yellow llama Co, a planner shop made to help Simmers play with purpose. Every week I talk all about things Sim life planning, storytelling and memory keeping. I’ll also brainstorm new ways to obsess over our pixel people, whether they be The Sims or another life sim game. And now let’s get into it. In today’s episode, I want to talk about how we can keep memories from within the game directly. So in the world of our Sims, to really honor the passing of time, memories can really turn houses into homes, save files into actually living like breathing worlds or at least make them feel that way and families into legacies. So I think it’s really fun to find ways to keep those memories in really the spaces in which your Sims reside to make it feel like those memories have actually happened.

Gloria [00:01:03]:

I mean, we know it right, we’re the Watcher but actually have it reflect in their spaces as well. I think if you can find a way to incorporate the history of your sims that they have within their world it can make playing their world so much more interesting and more immersive and make their lives feel even. More meaningful because on their walls or in their communities, you see that passing of time not only within the seasons, which is also, of course, a fun way to see how time passes, but also really in the things that they collect. So I’m going to share some ways that you can collect those memories and the history right within the game. So to figure out how to do this, I asked myself three basic questions to help me come up with these ideas and I’ll share these questions with you as well because I think it’ll help you find your own ways to collect history as well. So the first question I asked myself was what kind of moments would your SIM or their community want to cherish? Because once you know what you want to collect then you can further figure out how. But let’s say for example, you want to collect classic milestones. There’s rites of passage such as birthdays, marriages, deaths if your SIM gets a new job or is promoted whenever they move or buy a house.

Gloria [00:02:18]:

Whenever a SIM retires and goes into pension. If they’re building a family, whether that be a fur family like getting a new pet or getting pregnant or adopting a child or maybe the family, the Patchwork family and they’re joining up, that could be something that you’d want to remember or want or they would want to remember. So to say starting their own business is a big milestone. First prom night, things like that. But other things or happenings in their lives could be worth remembering. For example, important relationships, whether those be friendships, mentorships or enemies. I mean, why don’t we keep that? Wouldn’t that be funny if your Sims had a basement full of all The Sims? They cannot stand like portraits of them. Yeah, I don’t know, that’s ridiculous.

Gloria [00:03:04]:

But hey, it’s an idea, right? And maybe it fits to your SIM. Maybe they’re like some sort of evil SIM and they just get a kick out of that. And maybe if we want to think about communities on a higher level maybe the opening of a new neighborhood park is a reason to cherish a memory or a new recreation center or some sort of new community space. Maybe there are some fun scandals or town gossip that your Sims would want to hang on to and remember. So these are just some initial ideas and I’m sure you can come up with a lot more as well. Maybe also specific to your story or the worlds you’re playing. The next question I asked myself so what craft making skills and objects exist in the game that create fully customized results? For example, what can The Sims create and craft in a truly unique way that’s really key so that it’s customizable? For example, woodworking is a craft. They can create objects that are in the game but it’s limited to premade shapes and objects from the game.

Gloria [00:04:04]:

So a SIM can’t carve a statue of another SIM. So it’s not really something that could reflect the story or a memory of your SIM. So you need to be able to assign something unique to that object. For example text or an image. For example a painting. You can have your Sims create any box standard painting or I think they can also paint another Sims and that would be obviously a way to add a customized image so to say that image of that SIM in their story. And then the third question I asked myself was what can last over time in the game and is accessible to The Sims and can be passed on? So if you can customize something it’s related to somebody’s memory but you can’t actually pass it on then that’s not really something that makes sense to collect for memories. So for example, a wedding cake maybe it’s something you specifically chose for that SIM.

Gloria [00:04:55]:

It’s a pink cake because that’s their favorite color. It’s something you can bake so the SIM can make it. But it’s also not really can’t really assign anything custom to the cake. But either way the cake doesn’t last, right? The cake will go off. And maybe you don’t mind having a rotten cake in a keepsake box. I mean, whatever floats your boat. For the criteria I’m looking for for ways to collect memories in the game this needs to be fulfilled. So I want something that is suitable for memory keeping in the sense that it’s long term like it’ll last.

Gloria [00:05:27]:

So for example, if you have a SIM, create a song. Like you can have them write a song and give it a unique name but the song isn’t actually accessible anywhere else in the game, not that I know of. And this is also not a hard fast rule. So in general if you can put it in an inventory the item can be passed on and shared with other Sims. So that is something that I look for. Can it be put in an inventory? Obviously it also needs to last over time. Again, the cake not so ideal so grandma’s famous but I won’t do so. Now we have our three questions that we can ask ourselves to ultimately come up with gameplay ideas or objects that could work to help us collect memories in the game.

Gloria [00:06:02]:

So first, what kind of moments would your SIM or community want to cherish? So first off, let’s get that baseline and then the next two questions really determine whether or not it’s doable so without imagination or play and pretend which not knocking that. But we want to get focused on what’s actually doable in the games. And this is Sims, two Sims, three Sims for, you know, obviously upcoming games paralyzed Life by you, maybe you’re a Crusader Kings fan, whatever. These I think, can apply to different games. What can your SIM actually make in the game that can be customized so specific to that memory or story or SIM? And can that item actually last over time and can it be passed on so it won’t deteriorate over time so it won’t just go missing and disappear and it can actually be passed on from Sims to SIM. And so all these things considered I have found some fun ways and ideas to collect memories in the game. Of all The Sims games currently out in most you can create truly unique and long lasting artifacts of your Sims stories with photography, art and books. There are also some storytelling mods that can help you attach significance to items your Sims can put in their inventory for example and would want to cherish as well.

Gloria [00:07:17]:

So I’ll share some of those too. So starting with photography we of course have our milestones that we like to collect. We have our family photo wall, that’s the obvious thing. But what else can you take a photo of apart from The Sims themselves that could be worth remembering? So you could for example, take a photo of the old home before The Sims moved to a new home. I see often a lot of people taking photos of the new home, their families in front of a new home, which is of course important memory as well. But why not also take note on what The Sims are leaving behind? I mean, that home did them well, it served them well and I think it’s worth capturing in a photo because it’s also just as an important part of their history. Or why not take a photo of the little kid before they go to the first day of school. I asked on Twitter, who actually celebrates this day? And I’m surprised.

Gloria [00:08:09]:

I think a good percent, like around over 70% were for not celebrating that first day. But okay, I guess we’re focused on marriages and births and stuff, which is all good, but I think that’s a great opportunity to keep a memory of the child. It’s obviously in their young life stage. But also it’s an important day for that little sims. You can also take photos of before and afters, whether that be a makeover of a SIM that could be the renovation of a room, for example, you’re changing an office to a nursery. That could be a fun before after photo, something like that. Or another photography or thing. You can, how do you say, collect or take a snapshot of with photography would be traditions so you could have your family every year.

Gloria [00:08:58]:

They create a family Christmas card. There’s nothing that can actually be sent in the game to any other people. But you can just imagine you take a family photo in front of a tree or a snowy background or I don’t know, maybe in Solani because they’re having their family Christmas in Solani this year. But that’s their tradition. They take a family photo and you can imagine that it’s their Christmas card that they share with friends and family every year. Or you could take a photo of harvest dinner with the entire family or with friends. You can have a New Year’s Eve photo. Something that plays on any traditions that families might have in their lives.

Gloria [00:09:34]:

Something small, like a weekly movie night or a big occasion like something outside of the ordinary that you wouldn’t usually take a photo of but could be interesting in general. Candid snapshots can also be a good way to just a simple way to take photos of your Sims that can be meaningful memories. So it could be one SIM taking a photo of another Sims in their element. For example, taking a photo of Grandma baking or another other partner creating some art or their kid playing instead of those posed photos, which are great, but maybe just switch it up and create a photo that actually shows the essence of that sims a hobby that they have or in their favorite outfit, I don’t know. And you can also snap a photo of a meaningful object. So a Sims doesn’t always have to be in a picture to make it important to their history. So you can of course take a picture maybe of a wedding cake. You can take a photo of that microwave that unalived, dad.

Gloria [00:10:34]:

You can take a photo of the broken toilet after an angry poo. Get creative with it. What maybe would you normally not think to take a photo of but you actually enjoyed that moment, you thought it was funny for whatever reason. Make a photo of it and then you’ll remember it. The sims will remember it. They will have a higher skill the next time they use that microwave and also explore different formats when you’re taking photos. So obviously we have the selfie. You could have your SIM maybe take a selfie every day.

Gloria [00:11:01]:

And this SIM doesn’t change very much if they’re in the same life stage every day, hair doesn’t really grow, they don’t get taller. Okay, that’s okay. But maybe their outfit changes every day. That could be motivation to you to actually change their outfit. You can also use the photo booth. So in high school years, there’s a photo booth. I think in the Generation Pack, a photo booth was included. I’m not sure in sims three, but there’s definitely the sims three.

Gloria [00:11:24]:

There’s also a photo booth and it gives you just a different look and type of photo. You can use the photo studio that comes with the Get to Work expansion Pack or the Machino Kit. In The Sims. Four. You can use cross stitching. That’s a craft where I mean, I have never used it before, to be honest. But I think you can actually cross stitch an image of another SIM. So that’s kind of a way I categorize UnderPhoto because it is an image, basically.

Gloria [00:11:52]:

Next up, with art, you can also collect memories in the game. So I couldn’t come up with a lot here. Maybe if you know more, please let me know via my newsletter. You can reply. You can write a comment under a YouTube video. You can draw my community on Heartbeat and let me know there. But I came up with two. So in The Sims Three, you can create ice SIM sculptures, which is super cool.

Gloria [00:12:15]:

This is definitely something I did when I was playing the game. I don’t remember which skill it was. It was probably sculpting. It must have been Sculpting. In The Sims Three, you can sculpt and I think you can yeah, probably. I think with clay, wood and ice, you can sculpt with and if you had a high enough skill, you could sculpt a Sims. And that’s just really cool. And it doesn’t look like exactly like them.

Gloria [00:12:34]:

It is an eyes sculpture, so it doesn’t have that many details, but it is a sculpture of that particular SIM. So I think that’s a super fun way to create art in the game that would represent that SIM. Obviously, you can also create a painting of that SIM. So that’s in The Sims, I think in all of them, except maybe Sims One, you can create a painting of the SIM and you could probably also, I think in most of them, choose a style like a filter. So that’s a way you can get a bit more unique with it. But, yeah, you can create a painting of that SIM. You can obviously also, if you create like, make a screenshot and you can convert it to CC, that’s also a possibility to whether it’s a photo or maybe make it into a you edit the screenshot to make it look like a painting. That’s also a way to bring art or a photo of your SIM into the game with a mod, so to say, because you’d be converting that image to CC that you would bring into the game.

Gloria [00:13:33]:

But there are tutorials online for that. I totally recommend it if you want to have more options because I think in the game it just depends on what angle the SIM can get when they’re taking a photo, but it’s not really super specific. You can get more creative if you create your own edit of a screenshot. But last but not least, books. So with books you can definitely get creative to collect memories. So I think you have to be careful. In The Sims Four, I think you should make a copy before publishing your written book to make sure it doesn’t disappear in the ether. There are different ways you can collect those memories.

Gloria [00:14:07]:

So you could write a series. So for example, a serial killer, it’s always where my mind goes. Sometimes it’s in between wholesome and serial killer. Maybe serial killer talks about his crimes, writes some details about that. I think it’s really fun. So I think in The Sims Three, you can only write the title of your book and in The Sims Four, you have the title and you have a description area, so you can actually get really detailed. I mean, I’m not saying like gory with it, but the serial killer can name the SIM and maybe the circumstances and the reason why. Or you could write a series that is actually an encyclopedia series, a collection about maybe the history of Willow Creek, and this collection is stored in the community library.

Gloria [00:14:55]:

You can also write an autobiography of your SIM. One special tool or book you can write is The Book of Life. This is in The Sims Four and you can use this book to resurrect Sims. So I had no idea about this before I started researching and thinking about ideas to collect memories. But you can use this to bring a SIM back to life. And that could be funny for storytelling, not only for memory keeping, but I guess this is more so I mean, it’s keeping the essence of the SIM literally because it can be resurrected with it. But you can use it. For example, if your Sims is a vampire and they fall in love, but their lover passes away and they can use the book to bring back their partner, that’s maybe a storytelling aspect, maybe less for memory keeping on hindsight when I think about it, but still fun.

Gloria [00:15:46]:

And my ultimate favorite way to collect memories in the game with a book, sorry, console players. It’s a mod. It’s called the ink for yourself memory keeper. Mod by Ravishin. It’s basically a journal that you can use to collect memories or anything you’d want, really. So you can use it as a diary, obviously, or you can use it to track the save file history. So if a book that’s kept in Willow Creek in maybe the community museum and important events that happen in that world or maybe in all of the worlds, are collected in that book. So it’s really great.

Gloria [00:16:26]:

You can add a title and a description whenever you create a journal entry. And I think you can also add an icon, like a random icon from a collection of icons and later a SIM can actually flip through that and read. So I think that’s fun. So a diary, a safe file history, a little black book, maybe of a romantic SIM, a burn book, so maybe some juicy gossip. You can keep notes for a club in the Ink For Yourself mod. You can use it to log keepsakes with details about those items in the safekeeper. So when you have a keepsake box, which was introduced to the game, to the Sims Four game with the Generations Pack and growing together, it’s called yeah, it’s really cool. You can add items into the keepsakes box, but you can’t actually annotate them.

Gloria [00:17:12]:

So you can’t give them a caption or anything like that. And so it’s like there’s a random object in this keepsake box and you kind of have to remember what that was all about. But with a keepsakes log with the Ink for Yourself journal, you can actually keep track of those details. Like you can give it a title, mom’s hat or whatever and then details about it. And that’s how you can keep track of those keepsakes. Some other mods that I think are really great are less so books, but they’re more like storytelling mods objects. But that would be, for example, life Notes by Lumpino. This is a mod that can be used to collect notes.

Gloria [00:17:49]:

It says in the mod life Notes about a SIM while they’re still living. But when they pass, the beautiful thing is this life notes is an object that can actually be put in inventory. So it can be stored in a keepsake box or wherever you’d like. So it fulfills that last criteria that it can be passed on and it actually has longevity. So I think that’s a really great way to collect the history of an individual. Sims and actually keep it stored somewhere. What I think is also fun is the It’s all Gravy mod by revashin. So this is a mod that lets you transfer like sim’s Soul Sims essence from maybe a gravestone to a plaque, for example, a memorial plaque.

Gloria [00:18:27]:

And you can engrave it with an epitaph so with some more details. And I think that is really great if you want another way to display your past. Sims there’s also a mod by Ravishing called Better or Birth, which lets you add a SIM to a birth certificate or an ultrasound picture and lets you therefore customize that further. So we’ve talked about how we can collect memories with photographs, art and books storymaws and now I want to talk about keepsakes in general. So with the new expansion pack growing together we were introduced to a keepsakes box and I think it’s fun to think about apart from customizable things that really truly can hold the story of a Sims in an object, what are other things that a SIM could put in that keepsakes box that could still have meaning? Because like I said, we can keep a log of that with the Ink for yourself journal so maybe it’s not so bad. So we can think what are maybe milestone markers that a SIM might want to hold on to? Photos obviously, but maybe they want to keep their bouquet from their wedding. That would be fun to keep in the keepsake box that would truly have meaning. One could also collect postcards or mementos from traveling and you can come up with probably a gazillion more ideas.

Gloria [00:19:43]:

I think it really comes down to how familiar you are with the game and what can be actually moved around into a Sims inventory but I think there’s probably a lot more than we can think of off the bat that you could actually keep in a keepsakes box. Like we said before, maybe granny’s old pie that goes rotten but it had meaning. In regards to the keepsakes box we can also ask ourselves how can the mods that I’ve mentioned before how can they be used to collect memories? So for example you can pop the Life notes object into the keepsakes box, you can use the Ink for Yourself journal and you can put that in the keepsake box. That’s something that can be dragged and dropped so you can use it as a family history book to collect info about the legacy of that family, their traditions and any important events. You can also another mod from Ravashin is the family portrait maker where it lets you create a super easy snapshot of the family and you can use that mod to create that snapshot at each generation and you can keep those photos in the keepsake box. Ravishing just now came out with this new mod called SIM Portraits which the name is on the tin, basically lets you create SIM portraits with the click of a button. A fun way to use that is just create a snapshot of that SIM at every live stage. So I thought it was fun.

Gloria [00:21:06]:

She showed in one of her previous screenshots that you can add like the date and more information like in the description that’s a way you can chronologize their growth and their progress. If you don’t have growing together you can still use her Hoarder Synominus mod by Revashin which can also be used for storage and actually she has a large collection of different ways like old boxes, old cardboard boxes, a plastic box you could use really fun ways to store items. So, to summarize, there are many different ways to collect memories in the game. If you were first getting there and you’re thinking, okay, how can I do this? You can ask yourself, first of all, what kind of memories would you want to collect? So what do your sims want to remember? What do they want to cherish then? What can they create that can be customized to that sims memory? And then also, can that item be passed on, and does it have longevity? In the end, I shared different ways you can collect memories with photographs, art books, and some mods. So I hope that helps you see all the possibilities they are. So I hope these ideas help make your spaces in your sims lives feel more real, feel more immersive, really feel the passing of time, because your sims are surrounded by evidence of that. In the next episode, we’re going to talk about how to memorialize your sims and take these mementos that we’ve collected in this episode and build monuments of their history in their worlds. And until then, Happy Simming!

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