Last month, my mom turned 75, and it was hard to figure out what gift to give her. She doesn’t want or need more things to sit around the house, and she honestly wasn’t all that excited about turning 75. I knew she wouldn’t be thrilled about a big party… and the normal gift ideas seemed kind of boring for a milestone birthday.
Then I had an idea to make her a memory jar! We could give her the gift of 75 memories.
Supplies Needed for a Memory Jar Gift:
Any type of jar will work for a memory jar. We chose one from Hobby Lobby that has a latch to keep it closed. A mason jar would also work well.
Colored glass would be fun, but I do think it’s nice if the jar is translucent so that you can see all the memories in there!
In addition to the jar, I also bought some colorful origami paper. The paper we used is 4″ x 4.” We’ve used 6 inch square origami paper for projects in the past, but this size seemed perfect for writing little messages.
What to put in your memory jar:
Our whole family (five kids and two parents) wrote down memories until we had 75 memories. We did this over the course of a few days, and it was honestly so much fun! So awesome to look back at all the fun moments we’ve had! Each person signed their name on all their memories so that my mom could tell who wrote what.
We didn’t stress about making every memory something amazing. Just simple, everyday memories of doing things together. The kids wrote about card games, birthdays together, holiday traditions, and funny things that happened.
And then some of the memories did turn out to be amazing! One of my husband’s memories was getting to place each of the grandchildren in my mom’s arms for the first time.
Once we had 75 memories, I carefully loaded them into the jar.
Then we put the jar in a gift bag, and we were all set!
My mom LOVED it! The first night, she read a whole pile of memories. Maybe 25 or so. Then she pulled out a few at a time over the next few days and read them. She said it was like a candy jar, except calorie free! Then she read them all again as she put them back in the jar.
Memory Jar Ideas:
- Make a jar with 50 memories for a 50th anniversary
- Make a jar for a special teacher or mentor – get the whole class to contribute memories
- Obviously, birthdays work well
- Make a jar for someone who is retiring from many years in the same position