• Sarah Nantel


Eat healthier. Exercise. Worry Less.

Those are three resolutions that I have always made to myself every new year for the last 30 years. Sometimes I follow them. Most of the time I forget them come Jan 2. (Because I love food, I hate the treadmill and I am a natural worrywart.)

As I reflect upon the past year, there are some things I will never forget –like being pregnant or giving birth to Anders. Honestly, most of the other things have really been just a daze. If you are like me, the year just tends to fly by and we don’t always remember everything clearly. This year, I decided to stop making resolutions that I can’t keep.

Just a few days ago, I came across the idea of a gratitude jar (they are all over pinterest!) I knew I wanted to make one for my family this year.

Basically the idea is just that –a gratitude jar. All you need is a jar (a box or cookie can will also work- the ideas are endless!), and each day you write down one or more things you are happy or grateful for. At the end of the year, you open the jar and read through all your memories and things you are thankful for. I can see this to be a great New Year’s Eve tradition for our family, as counting down till midnight while watching fireworks is a thing of the past.

It is also a great way to help us look for the good in our days, no matter how big or small. As a new mom, sometimes I get grumpy when my husband comes home and asks me how my day was with Anders (he gets the “don’t even ask” look most of the time). Instead of focusing on the negative, we now spend a few minutes each night reflecting back and write down anything that comes to mind that made us happy (it can be individual or written together as a family).

Whether it is a special moment with our kids, our travels, an accomplishment at work, visits with friends and family, a surprise from someone, a new thing we did or learnt, a feeling, or even just being thankful for the beautiful day outside- there are really no set “rules” on what you decide to write.

Anders is still too young to write down something to put in the jar, but this is also a great way for me to remember his milestones and moments through the year. (He can look back on these yearly jars someday and remember when he first said mama!) When he gets older and can write his own happy things, I hope he will also start to understand the importance of gratitude.

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