Joy Worth Having

discovering joy in big and simple pleasures

DIY Love in a Jar

Keeping My Head Above Water

My kids are now teenagers and over the years they’ve made some wonderful, precious gifts for me that stole my heart over and over again. These gifts were usually craft projects made at school for special holidays like Christmas or Mother’s Day. I’ve kept significant pieces as a way to hang on to that moment in their childhoods just a little bit longer and I still take them out every now and then to bring me back to when they were little. Moms, you know what I’m talking about here (cue the Kleenex)!

One of my favorite gifts given to me by my son was this jar containing sweet affirmations about what he appreciated or loved about me at the time (I believe he made this gift when he was in first or second grade).

The teacher had preprinted some unfinished sentences on colored construction paper and then cut them into strips. My son finished the sentences on the strips in his own, early elementary school printing to tell me what he appreciated about me. The sentences included:

“Mom, you are so good at….”
“I love when you say….”
“You are good at….”
“I love when we….”
“I love when you help me with….”
“I love when you make….”
“My favorite thing to do with you is….”
“You look so pretty when….”
“My mom is the best….ever!”
“I love when you tell me….”

The strips were curled on a pencil and then placed in a jar with a screw on lid. For a pretty topping, a square piece of thin, patterned fabric was tied to the top of the jar lid with a colorful ribbon.

I still like to open the jar from time to time and read what my son wrote about me way back when.

It dawned on me that this simple jar with beautiful and sincere affirmations inside would make a wonderful gift for the other important people in our lives. From grown daughter to mother, from student to teacher, from child to grandparent, from husband to wife, from BFF to BFF. The gift giver can use these same affirmations listed here or make up his or her own, depending on the person receiving the jar. The affirmations can be serious or funny, but always sincerely from the heart. It’s so easy to make, takes just a few minutes, but will be one of the most cherished gifts that person will ever receive. And it’s one of those priceless gifts that are so inexpensive to make.

Get creative with the statements and how you might decorate the jar. You might add a touch of shredded colored paper or confetti inside the jar as well to brighten it up even more.

There you have it. Love in a jar!


A medium size jar or larger (the bigger the jar, the more affirmations and declarations of caring go inside).

Colored construction paper, variety of colors.

Pretty thin fabric cut into a square sized to be about slightly larger than double the size of the jar lid (for my son’s project, the fabric square measured 7 inches by 7 inches).

Thin ribbon cut long enough to secure the fabric to the jar lid as a decorative cover.

Affirmations and personalized declarations of love and caring. You can type several affirmations and statements on multiple pages and then print each page onto different colors of paper (so several affirmations on pink paper, several more on blue, several more on purple, etc.).

Cut the affirmations/declarations into strips then curl the strip on a pencil to give it a little body. Put the strips into the jar. Twist the jar lid closed. Center your square of fabric over the lid of the jar. Tie the ribbon around the fabric to secure it to the lid.


  1. Salve Flores on December 5, 2018 at 7:30 am

    This is a great gift to give/receive. Thanks Rachel.

    • Keeping My Head Above Water on December 5, 2018 at 2:38 pm

      Thanks so much. I love homemade gifts, especially from my kids.

  2. Keeping My Head Above Water on December 30, 2018 at 8:41 pm

    Thanks for letting me know Salve. I’ll check it out.

  3. Julie Lin on December 30, 2018 at 9:27 pm

    Love this!!!! So sweet and a perfect gift for any mom or ancruallt anyone you appreciate in life!

    • Keeping My Head Above Water on December 30, 2018 at 9:33 pm

      So glad you like it Julie! Yes, I think anyone would appreciate receiving one of these jars to show how much they are loved and appreciated! I know I did!

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