As we edge our way into another week of social distancing during the Covid-19 pandemic, one way breast cancer survivors can practice gratitude is by making a preserve jar. You can make one with any jar, decorate it and write a daily memory, quote or any high or low point of your day on a piece of paper you fold and then place into the jar.
Why make a preserve jar? One year from now when things go back to yet another new normal, you may remember the emotions you felt during the pandemic, but not what the experience was like for you every day. Writing down those memories and placing them into a preserve jar can help you remember what happened.
It also can be a healthy way to process positive or negative emotions. The act of writing them out can be healing.
Ready to make your preserve jar? Here's how to do it.
1. Repurpose a jar
Find a glass jar large enough to hold many strips of folded paper onto which you will write your daily thoughts or quotes. I used a large jar that held apple preserves from Costco, if that gives you any indication of its size. You could also use old pasta sauce jars. Make sure you clean the jar thoroughly and keep the lid so you can put it on top of your preserve jar.
2. Decorate the jar
Next, decide how you want to decorate it. I painted "Love Wins" in Mod Podge, then sprinkled glitter on top of those words. You can also cut out words, quotes or pictures from an old magazine and glue those onto the jar. You could even add stickers. Or, try painting a design with acrylic paints.
Whatever you do, make sure you place parchment paper or an old newspaper under the jar so that you can quickly and easily clean up the mess when you are done decorating. You can even reuse the glitter that has fallen on the newspaper or parchment paper.
3. Start writing
The fun thing about your preserve jar is that you can make it your own. You may want to write a daily quote onto the piece of paper you'll fold and put into the jar. Or, you can write what you are thankful for, or what got you through that day or what was the best part of it. You can do a mixture of all of these things I am doing a mixture of things -- mostly something good that happened those days. I am even writing about challenges. I want to be able to go back to my preserve jar when the pandemic is over and remember what I experienced on a daily basis. I think of it like a miniature book. Each phrase or item will help tell my story of the pandemic.
I hope you enjoy making a preserve jar and that it helps you navigate life during challenging times!