Friday, January 21, 2011

the new year...

i feel that our family has been shown much love over the years & has been blessed in so very many ways, by so very many people around us...both in our own local communities and online.

each day people show us kindness...whether by passing along a bag of clothes that their child has outgrown, by holding open a door, by asking "how are you doing today??". these "little things" that we can sometimes overlook if we aren't careful.

enter the "gratitude jar" may seem a simple oatmeal canister covered in magazine photos, but it symbolizes so much more...this jar symbolizes our family's commitment to be more mindful of the everyday blessings that we are shown.

each saturday @ one of our everyone-together-family-meals, someone draws a name from the jar. throughout that week we make cards for that person/family & also create something special for them. this could be anything from a handcrafted item to a special baked good.

and the following friday/saturday that person (family's) gift basket is delivered to them.

anyone's name can be put in the jar...i have put so many names in already, from family friends who have given us their hand-me-downs, to the librarian who always makes it a point to engage each one of our 4 children in a conversation, to the local grocery store manager who ALWAYS asks how we are doing & is always so helpful.

we began this tradition the first weekend in january (saturday, the 8th). papa drew that name & it was his own! :)

here are the goodies her received...

a lovely card from aydin, with why he is thankful for his papa on the back...;)

along with a card from ehren, evyn, orin, sammi & i, with the same...
one of his favorite dinners...taco salad. :)
we also made his favorite blueberry cheesecake, well actually we made 2! it has long been papa's dream to have a blueberry cheesecake of his very own. <3


  1. What an absolutely beautiful thing for a family to do. I love it! And I bet it means the world to all those people to know that they're remembered and appreciated in such a thoughtful way.

  2. What a wonderful idea.I love that you have included others outside the home who may be in need of some love and caring (i know everyone is really:) ).Its such a great way to show others that you appreciate all they do.

  3. Such a wonderful activity - for all involved. I am charmed.


  4. This is such a gorgeous idea. When my children are older I will definitely try to incorporate something like this into our weekly rhythm. xo m.

  5. thank you all for your comments, which for some reason never quite made their way to my inbox. it hit me like a "duh!" moment, you know?? there are so many lovely people in the world who affect us on a daily basis. we tend to remember the one who cut us off, or the lady who was "so rude!", but what about the others?? i really want our children to grow up aprreciating the little things. that being said, my sister & i are definitely the one filling up the jar. but as the children are part of the process...making baked goods, or crafted items i know that this will effect them on another level...perhaps one day, they will each have a gratitude jar @ their homes as well...xoxo

  6. I just want to tell you "Thank you". Your approach in the way you are raising your children is something that has been taken away from this world bit by bit and I cannot express the happiness my heart feels in knowing all is not lost because of moms like you. You inspire and are teaching so many.

  7. an update on the gratitude jar...we still continue this tradition, thought the gifts are now given monthy.

    drawing names on a weekly basis & even a bi-weekly basis turned our gratitude jar into "another chore" we needed to tend to. but given a bit more time, it has remained the blessing that it was meant to be. <3