This is a really fun project for the New Year! Even though we are about a week and a half into 2016, it’s not too late to start this! You can put it together in an hour or less, and it’s never too late to count your blessings, so let’s get started….
I have been seeing Journal Jars and Joy Jars all over the internet, Facebook and Pinterest. I thought it was a wonderful idea! I really want to document the good things and blessing in my life- but how many times have I started a journal, only to fall off track just a few days or week into it, simply because I didn’t have time to sit and write a page or even or a paragraph? Or didn’t feel like pulling out my journal and making a “big thing” of writing stuff down? This is a great way to note and acknowledge the good little things (and sometimes really BIG things) that happen in our everyday lives. Anything that brings a little joy and light into your life can go into the jar. It doesn’t require a big commitment- just grab a piece of paper and jot things down as they happen or as you think of them. I look forward to seeing my jar get fuller and fuller through the year! And as you do this more and more, it’s amazing how much easier it becomes to find the good things in life, little things that we tend to take for granted. As you start noticing these things, you become more at peace and happy. You will start to LOOK for good things to put in your jar!
Some things to jot down for your jar might include: finding a good parking place at the mall, a sunny day, a chirping bird, an affectionate pet that brightens your day, safe travel for you or a loved one, finishing a project, starting a project, finding the perfect fabric, a phone call from a friend, discovering a wonderful new café, getting new shoes, getting the promotion, winning the lottery… lots of things, big and small….
I really wish that someone had come up with this idea (or that I’d known about it) when my kids were little. What a fun way to teach our children about gratitude and positivity!!
I’ve created a FREE printable sheet for you to make a tag for your jar- choose the one that speaks to your heart!
You will need:
- *A quart sized jar (you could also use a special box, basket, or other container). I had a vintage Mason Jar with zinc lid in the cupboard just waiting to be put to good use!
- *Cute cup, box, or basket to hold your pieces of paper
- *White paper or cardstock
- *Scrapbooking papers (not necessary- but really fun)
- *Twine or string
- *Double sided tape
- *Scissors, colored pencils, black marker, hole punch, paper cutter (optional)
Print out the tag sheet onto white paper or cardstock. If you want, you can color it with colored pencils. Cut out a tag just outside the line. Hint- you can use a black marker to darken up any white edges left on the tag after you cut it out.
You can leave the tag like this if you want. I used double sided tape to attach it to a piece of scrapbooking paper and then cut out the scrapbooking paper, leaving a little border. Punch a hole in the tag.
Cut several pieces of paper (either plain white paper or scrapbooking paper) into rectangles using scissors or a paper cutter. This is important- you want those pieces of paper easily accessible and ready to grab when you want to jot down something for your jar. The idea is that this is a quick and easy way to add special memories to your collection- if you have to hunt for a little piece of paper, you will put it off and not do it! Place them in a cute cup or other container.
Use twine or string to attach the tag to the jar.
Try to add at least one thing to your jar every day. This will help you build a “gratitude habit.” Some days will be easier than others! Some days you will have many things to add to the jar, and you may have days where you struggle to find one thing to add to the jar. That’s OK- remember, the smallest things still deserve gratitude. If all you can come up with is that you managed to get out of bed today, write it down :)
At the end of the year, take some time, either by yourself or with your loved ones, empty the jar, and reflect on all of the GOOD things from the previous year. You can put all of the pieces of paper in an envelope and label the envelope with the year.