diy {mommy’s jar}

Okay, so I really don’t know what to call this little project. Lots of random things have kept me from getting to craft much lately. I needed a quick crafting fix…like just something small to hold me over until I could carve out a block of time. Wow, that sounds like addictive behavior. So while fixing lunch, my mind was scanning the random things sitting around my kitchen waiting for new life. In the midst of spreading a little peanut butter on bread, I remembered some little wooden tokens I picked up when we visited Renegade Handmade in Chicago.
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I quickly finished piling 4 plates with food and then gathered an old glass jar (I never get rid of glass jars) and an old torn shirt. While sandwiches were consumed, I taped the top of the jar off. Then dashed outside to get a few coats of white glossy spray paint on.
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By the time I picked up lunch, the paint was dry and the tape was ready to remove….
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Add a strip of an old shirt and some vintage lace….throw in a few coins….and I had myself a little treat jar.
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Random Photo Tip of the Day: Aperture is my favorite part of shooting in manual. For me, aperture is what determines the story I want to tell. Without moving, I can choose to tell the story of my son coloring or the story of my latest craft. Aperture gives me the ability to make everything else so blurry that my main story becomes so obvious. I used a f/2.8 setting for these.
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So my little jar has some fun little tokens residing in it now. When I see a random act of kindness or great decision made, I pull out the jar and let that little person choose a token. Granted, the tokens are all for things we do on a daily or regular basis…but, the kids still really enjoy the idea of getting to pick their token.
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When I first showed them my little jar, they each eagerly asked if they could pick one out. It surprised me which one they each choose. In some ways, I think it will be a fun gauge of what their current needs are from me. I hug them more than I think they want on a daily basis anyway, but if one of them picks the “Good for One Hug”…well, that lets me know that little one needs more hugs….or more time alone on a walk…or more focused time playing with me.

So, they think the jar is for them – a type of reward. Really though, it is for me. It helps me to recognize what is going on inside them and what areas they may not verbally be telling me they need me.
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A lunchtime craft. And it looks cute in my kitchen.
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  • Jamie - Love this idea! I have the supplies for the cute jar… I just have to come up with a way to make tokens….(hmmm, I may be heading to JoAnns today)!

  • kari signe - Super cute idea! Thanks for the inspiration.

  • Sarah Pratt - Now if I could only have my own stash of spray paint without my husband getting a hold of it for his projects. Thanks Ashley! It’s always a pleasure reading you first thing in the morning!

  • Amy - I totally need to do this…what a brilliant way to scope out your kids’ needs…I often wonder if I am not giving them enough and this tangible goal would help me feel like I’m at least meeting some type of quota. That sounds bad…but seriously just a way for them to ask for something without really asking would be so helpful to make me feel like I am actually meeting their needs better. Anyway..thanks for the idea…I will be doing this! My kiddos thank you!

  • Kristin - I love the simplicity of this. We have done lots of reward systems, and they ultimately don’t last long because I get tired of the “stuff” – the treats, the junky toys, etc. I love that these are simple, feel-good rewards that never run out, and that promote happy relationships. Oh, and the jar is cute, too! :)

  • Nancy - I just love this. Everything about it. Super simple. Super awesome.

  • colleen from alabama - So sweet! Reminds me of a book i just got called “wild things, the art of nurturing boys”. I heard one of the writers speak at “dot mom” a lifeway conference. He talked about the God designed stages of growth in our boy’s lives and who they are and what they need at that stage. He was spot on! My boy mirrored so many of the things he said. It has helped me watch for certain things i may not have noticed otherwise. This idea would work so well in conjunction with what i am learning! Thank you so much!

  • tammie - love, love, love this idea!

  • Jen - I will be making this today. I need an excuse to make something and my kids could use some incentive. :)

  • emmybrown - LOVE this idea! Awesome way to get “in tune” with those around you….can’t wait to do it too! :)

  • Katie @ explanationrequired - That’s adorable! Any idea where one can get these tokens?

  • amanda torres - Yep, I love it. You really should make some of your own chips though. I failed to read “One Jedi sword fight with me.”

  • Gretchen - I found the tokens here:

    http://www.leafcutterdesigns.com/shop/tradetokens.html

  • Amanda - I did the same thing, but stuffed them in his Easter eggs instead of candy. He loved it! He couldn’t wait to turn in his “free lazy day” when I was cleaning house.

  • Jessica @ Two Shades of Pink - This is just perfect…every little detail. What a fabulous idea!

  • RobyGiup - What a lovely idea! And really it will be revealing for you!

  • Paige - Oh, this is awesome for couples too! A big hug for me, a kiss for you! Snuggles for the babies.

  • cailan - What a lovely, Helpful idea. I’ll have to look into getting some of those tokens…and you are amazing at making craft time happen!

  • lyn - Love it! I will have to come up with something similar! Thanks!

  • Aubrey - Love it! And I love those Anthro measuring cups. I have them on my kitchen counter too. I must be a crafting addict too. Sometimes I throw something together for a teacher just to get my “fix”.

  • Marianne - This is such a great idea! You never know how peanut butter will inspire you!

  • Monique W - Hi Ashley! I love the idea of having a reward jar of things like quality time and hugs! I write a weekly column in our city’s newspaper called “ifamily” where I give ideas on how to spend time creatively engaging your family – would it be O.K. if I used this idea in an upcoming column? I would obviously credit the idea as yours. I manage to get some of my articles up on my blog, you could check them out there to get an idea of what I do. Thanks! http://pocketfulwhimsy.blogspot.com/search/label/ifamily

  • Lisa Pummel - I love this idea! So creative to get their needs met.

  • Nicole - totally cute idea – love it!

  • Renae - Such a cute idea! I have an old shirt I’ve been saving, just love the fabric. Might have to make something similar! Thanks for the inspiration!! I just love your blog!

  • Rebecca - I’ve been following your blog for about a year, and your posts are always a bright spot in my day. I love this idea! Thanks for sharing. I’ve already ordered my own set of coins. :)

  • Jessica Lynette - I have been spending this year focused on “romancing my sons” (and in fact am spending this month doing the 31 days challenge on the subject of romance.)
    This is a fantastic idea for measuring what their needs are!! I love that idea. Thanks!! :)

  • Lea Redmond - Hello y’all. I’m the maker of these tokens, and it’s SO lovely to see this post this morning! Thanks for the sweet idea and great photos to illustrate it! I also make custom wooden tokens for people, so if you have an idea for a token I don’t make – please get in touch!

  • justine - such a good idea. i don’t have kids yet, but i am filing this away for when i do. and, i just love the look of the jar, i’m sure i can find other uses for the jar. also–i spy the anthro milk jug measuring set i want! so cute.

  • Jess H - love this! thanks for such an insightful & creative idea!!

  • Stacey - I’m doing this… This would be awesome in the classroom too. I think it could be altered a bit and used for special teacher time. So cool! :)

  • nicole @ deliajude - brilliant. i am off to buy some tokens.

  • Pam K - Really cute. I have a bunch of glass jars that I can do some stuff with other than flower vases. Also I loved the cupcake party idea. I made 2 this past weekend for birthdays.

  • Lin - I love this idea… would be good for getting us through our summer holidays this year. Thanks for the idea. PS I love your blog. It is so refreshing and a lovely change from the normal ‘design/materialistic’ blogs that are flooding blogosphere. xx

  • Christy Henderson - What a cool idea!

  • Kate @ Songs Kate Sang - Ashley, I love this! It reminds me of the ‘languages of love’. Have a blessed day!

  • Lila - Your ideas are always so heart warming. I have started to collect things that I want to do with my futures babes. Thank you.

  • Rochelle - What a great idea. Thanks for posting this :)

  • Melissa - Love this idea! I ran across a tutorial for making these coins, but hadn’t gotten around to it! Guess I know what I’m going to put them in when I do!

  • Brooke - Thanks for the cute idea! You kids are so sweet. I made one but to hold money. http://brookeandamronharper.blogspot.com/2011/10/no-big-deal-craft.html

  • Cortney Augustson - To spend heaviness you need to burn extra calories than you consume and resistance training can avoid you solve this. A well all the same made known dilution training program can help your expand the amount of calories you burn throughout the day. Have a healthy diet propose in place and you are satisfactorily taking place your way to burning unasked for fat.

  • 10 on Tuesday | RhondaSteed.com - [...] This is a brilliant idea that I want to do for my [...]

  • Love Tokens & Hug Tins - A Craft For Families - […] first time I saw a concept like this was on Ashley Ann’s blog Under the Sycamore (her version HERE). I decided to make my own love tokens and set up our system a little differently. Ready to […]

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