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valentine's day in a jar

Growing up, holidays were always a big deal. Valentine's Day was especially fun, because my Dad would bring home flowers, candy and usually a stuffed animal for his little girl. Maybe it's because continuing these traditions bring me back to those fond memories, or maybe because I don't know how to NOT celebrate even the smallest of holidays, but I always like to do something extra special for the ones I love on V-Day.

I've made these candy jars for a couple years and they are always a BIG hit with my husband and I would imagine that as Ava comes of candy-eating age, she will be into it too. They are adorable, compact, filled with all of the candy he loves, and won't create a lot of excess junk in our home after the holiday passes -- just wash the jar and reuse as a bud vase, water cup, jar for canning, etc.

These also make great gifts for neighbors, teachers and kids of all ages.

What You'll Need

  • Assorted Valentine's Day candy

  • I like to pick 4-5 different kinds that my hubby likes. Nothing too messy (sour candy with sugar that falls off everywhere is a major no-go), and a variety of colors, shapes and textures, some wrapped in pretty foil, and some unwrapped (like M&Ms, Skittles, Sweet-Tarts, etc.)

  • Always get some sort of shapely marshmallow. I made these for Easter one year and used cute little Peeps around the perimeter. This year I used pink marshmallow hearts.

  • Mason jars - I'm using the 16oz size, but I've used the 32oz jars as well (just be sure to buy more candy to fill it up).

  • Scissors

  • Fabric, ribbon, Washi tape or whatever else you want to use to jazz up your jar.

  • Tag and hole punch -- I'm using small felt hearts from Target to make my tags but you can use scrapbook paper, a small wood placard, or anything else you can attach to your jar to display your recipient's name and/or a short message!

Put it Together

1) Start filling. Line up your jars and fill them up like a little assembly line. The order doesn't matter, just whatever candies you think look good together.

2) Prop up candies with a cute shape along the sides of the jar. I did this with the heart-shaped Reese's and heart-shaped marshmallows. This is what makes the jars look so dang cute, so don't even think about getting lazy and tossing it all in haphazardly! Lay some candies flat in the center to help prop up the shaped candies along the jar perimeter.

3) Decorate the lid and add a tag! I did mine three different ways:

-With lace: Cut a 5'' x 5'' square out of fabric (I used a cream lace). Place the inner circle of the canning jar lid on top of your jar, and lay the fabric square on top. Screw the jar ring on over the fabric. Tie ribbon on top of the ring

-With ribbon: Get a couple ribbons with different shapes or textures. I used a metallic gold scalloped ribbon and secured it with a dot of glue at both ends. I then did the same with a peach ribbon along the lid.

-With Washi tape: Press washi tape along the perimeter of the jar ring. Add some twine or cotton string and your tag!

Have fun spreading the love this February with these sweet and thoughtful Valentine jars!


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