Creating a Memory Jar


The beginning of the year seemed like a great time for us to try out an idea that I’m hoping will become a family tradition.  I got the idea when I pinned this image from Inchmark: a jar for collecting the many funny things that children say.

Image from Inchmark.

I didn’t have to go out and buy anything for this project, I just took an empty glass jar that I got a few months ago at Hobby Lobby for under $5, and then I asked my husband to make a label for it.

Then, after that, we started randomly writing on some small Post-it notes that have been hanging around in my junk drawer for years.  We’ll likely take a cue from Inchmark and start using scrap paper when the Post-its run out, since it seems like a pretty good way to reuse the flaps on envelopes.   We did add a small twist of our own, in that we are not only writing down funny things that the kids say, but also funny moments that we share.  Then, on New Year’s Eve 2012, we’ll read them together, and hopefully have some laughs remembering the year that passed.  It’s just a simple way to try to remember the little moments that fill our days.

So far, we’ve got a handful of entries.  Christopher wrote about how when we went to get His Majesty from his crib on New Year’s Day, we saw that he’d managed to remove his pajama top, which made us laugh, since we were greeted with a view of his chubby, round tummy.   Is there a better way to be greeted in the morning than by a chubby topless toddler wearing an ear to ear grin?  I tell you, the boy can be so cute, it’s unreal.  I wrote about how when my husband told Christopher to put on a “play jacket” instead of his new jacket, Christopher’s response was “This fabric doesn’t get grass stained”, with his expression as serious as if he had personally performed qualitative analysis on the fabric, at which point my husband and I cracked up laughing.  Christopher wrote about walking in on a goofy dance I was doing in the kitchen while cleaning the cupboards. I’m sure there will be many more funny moments and quotes to keep track of.

You can expand on this idea by doing your own vacation keepsake memory jars, like this idea from The Inspired Room (P.S. Have you SEEN Melissa’s site, The Inspired Room?  It is an amazing resource full of ideas on how to create an “authentic” home, not just something that looks pretty but lacks character and functionality.  Check it out, but be sure you have some time to spare… I could easily kill a few hours over there).

You can fill the jars with shells, post cards, a favorite photo, magnets, keychains, sand, whatever you collect during your adventures, label them with dates and locations, and then display then in your home or office.  I think this is a really fun idea, full of character, and great conversation pieces.  I only wish I had remembered this idea in time to try it on our vacation last month. Oh, well, there’s always next time.

Do you have any new traditions that you’re trying out?  Any old traditions that you’re continuing?  I’d love to hear about them…


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