Have you ever had those days when you want to do something, but you can't think of anything? What about rainy days, especially with kids, where you're stuck inside and everything sounds boring? Today's DIY is something to have on hand to make figuring out what to do in those times a bit easier, activity idea jars.
This project is a particularly good one for those with small children in the home. Some of the activities, especially those from the rainy day jar, may be things you do all the time or that seem boring, but there's something about pulling the idea at random from a jar that makes it seem fresh to a child. This is especially true if it comes out of a pretty or cool looking jar.
So let's get started...
Here's what you'll need to get started.
I broke this particular DIY into two distinct groups, adventure seeds, which are usually things that involve going out and about somewhere, and rainy day ideas, which are things you can do at home without having to go anywhere for anything.
You will need a glass jar with a lid for each group. I got these little jars at Dollar General for $2 each. Next you will need a permanent marker, scissors, a pen, and some paper. Construction paper works great for this, not only is it colorful, which adds to the jar's appearance, but the paper is thick, meaning your pen is less likely to bleed through the paper, which helps keep the drawing random.
I didn't decide to do this until after I'd gotten started, so it's not included in this first picture. You can use paint, nail polish, markers, or decoupage to decorate the jars or their lids. If you decide to do this, you will need the supplies for that as well. I ended up using some glitter nail polish the girls got for Christmas for a quick and simple but effective embellishment.
You'll want to begin by writing what is in the jar on the lid before you do anything else, especially if you will be embellishing it with something that takes a while to dry. This way you can make sure you know how large or small to write. I say to do this first because there is always the chance you will mess up and need to erase.
I certainly did. Nail polish remover does a good job of getting permanent marker off the medal, don't you think?
Some mediums such as nail polish can cause the marker to smear just a bit, especially if you had to erase before, but this isn't as big of a problem as you may think. It took a few rather thick coats to achieve the look I was going for here, and by the end of it, you could just barely see the original words. It covered over any smearing, and I was just able to see it well enough to go back over the letters with the marker after the lids were dry.
As a note, if you decide to use a nail polish, it applies easier and faster if you pour a bit onto the lid and then use the brush to spread it out instead of trying to paint the lid like a nail. Then set it aside to dry while you begin filling the jars.
While your lids are drying, use your scissors to cut several pieces of paper into small strips. I didn't bother measuring or anything, I just held four or five sheets together and cut out strips. Then I cut each of those strips into three pieces. That provided more than enough slips of paper for one jar.
I decided to pick pieces of paper that would color coordinate with the lid of the jar, so pinks, purples, and white for the adventure seeds and blues, greens, and yellows for the rainy day jar.
Not shown, but we also decided to begin a blessings jar for our family at the same time, so we used the left over slips from both for that project.
Here's where this DIY takes some thinking. Write down some basic ideas for each activity on the slips of paper. Fold each paper twice and add it to the jar. Keep going until the jars are full.
Above are a few examples of things in our adventure seed jars. We live way out in the county kind of between the three larger towns in the area and a couple of smaller ones. We've recently discovered there are all sorts of parks, small museums, and walking trails in the area we've never gone to before, so those are good ideas. With things like Siri that can always get you back home even if you get lost, you can suggest things like go driving and flip a coin to decide which way to go at each intersection for a set number of turns or time, then do something wherever you end up. Pick a town and see what events are going on. Explore a part of town you rarely visit, or pick a country at random, do some research, and try making one of their signature meals.
Here are a few examples of ideas for the rainy day jar. We're a crafty bunch, so things like play dough, paint, and sewing are things we'd enjoy. You can also put on a CD or your favorite playlist and have an impromptu dance party in the living room. What about a movie marathon or board game tournament? Do you have puzzles laying around you've forgotten about?
Maybe see what ingredients you have on hand and bake something or try to come up with a new dish with what you have in the pantry.
There you have it, a simple, super easy DIY project that's just perfect for this time of year. Give it a try, and any time you have a day stuck inside with "nothing to do" or hit a school break slump where you feel like you've done everything you can think of to try, you have something ready to break the boredom all year long.
Amanda is the artisan behind all the products made and sold by Contented Comfort.