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We are so excited to have guest blogger, Michelle Renee, of My Little Distressed Life, joining us for Valentine's Day!  This is the first of many DIY blogs she is working on exclusively for Driftwood Market this spring!


Valentine’s Day:  The Gift of Gratitude

I was never huge fan of Valentine’s Day.  Growing up, I remember counting the Valentine’s cards I received in school and the anxiety of whether I was going to get one from a crush or from anyone, for that matter. The prettiest and most popular girls were always the happiest—arms full of flowers, bears, candies, and cards. Meanwhile, some awkward teenagers like myself were furtively disguising our handwriting to send ourselves secret admirer cards.   I regarded this holiday as much-ado about nothing and boycotted it all those years ago.  Now that I am a mom, my boys are in preschool and have started to talk about Valentine’s Day with them.  I began thinking this might be a great opportunity to shape my children’s perception about the holiday and to create our own version of Valentines. I have decided it is a wonderful way to begin to teach my boys about gratitude.  My children are so loved and this would be a perfect time for them to let the ones who love them dearly know how grateful we for their love.  Gratitude is one of those emotions that does not come hardwired, we must teach and model it.  I believe that if we do not teach our children to express or model certain emotions we cannot expect them to intuitively be, say for instance, grateful or to express gratitude.  The Disney movie “Inside Out” is actually based on research.  Yup, brain-science.  Researcher Eric Jensen identifies sadness, joy, disgust, anger, surprise, and fear as the emotions that are hardwired in our DNA (Eric Jensen, Teaching with Poverty in Mind).  Emotions like gratitude, empathy, optimism and compassion are learned.  And learn they shall!

Do It Yourself Valentine's Decor


Since I am an educator by trade and a DIYer at heart, I put on my teacher hat and fired up my glue gun. My boys and I are going to be painting these cute little mason jars, filling them with candies, and putting a message inside.


We are going to let those who love us, including all of our quirks and imperfections, know how grateful we are that they love us anyway.  I am having the boys tell me why they are grateful for each of our Valentines.  Cute example: my three year old son is grateful that his Nonni always makes him special soup and buys him the best cozy pajamas.  It makes him feel so special.  So, we are writing these messages and putting them inside our mason jars.  Valentine’s Day, for us, will be about gratitude, not only is it a great teachable opportunity but it means so much more than a card and a box of chocolates.  


Driftwood Market DIY Mason Jars Now that I have decided that Valentine’s Day IS going to be a “thing” at my house, I realize that I have ZERO décor.  That simply cannot be.  I had some left over spray painted branches I used for Christmas décor and placed them into a clear vase.  A quick Michael’s trip yielded these simply adorable pink glitter heart ornaments.  I hung the hearts on my branches and viola, it’s feeling more festive already!  I also cut out some hearts and hung a long piece twine across an open frame, added a few pieces of tape, and presto—Valentine’s garland.  I grabbed my candlesticks from the cupboard and on the table, they went.  I think I am truly warming to the idea of Valentine’s.



 Want to make these adorable mason jars?


  • paint
  • scissors
  • foam brushes
  • twine
  • sand paper
  • pencil
  • painter’s tape
  • card stock
  • mason jars

Time to get started!  Cut out a piece of card stock in the shape of a heart to use as a template on the jars.  After you’ve crafted the perfect heart, use the pencil to trace the heart design onto the front of the mason jars.  Easy, right?!  You can also go ahead and use the painter’s tape to tape off the mason jars you wish to paint stripes on.  I used the painter’s tape to help get straight edges and  to space the stripes evenly (if that’s your thing ;-).  Put on the first coat of paint and let it dry, for both the heart and stripe jars, painting all of the space outside of the hearts and in the space between the painter’s tape on the stripe jars.  (Don’t worry if you paint over the tape-it will all peel off!)  Once the first color was added and I removed the tape, it was easy to paint the blank spots in the corresponding color because the paint acted as  a natural barrier now that one color was already on the jars.  I then cut the twine, the length equal to three times around the mouth of the jars as I was waiting for the jars to dry.  When the paint dries completely,  lightly sand the jars to distress them to your liking.  Finally, tie the twine around the mouth of the jars for the perfect finishing touch!  And there you have it: SIMPLE, VINTAGE, DISTRESSED Valentine’s mason jars to use for gift giving or decorating this February!

Michelle Renee is a fantastic DIYer with exquisite taste.  Follow her decor and design on IG  here:

You can also check out her {beautiful} website for more of her remodel projects-we highly recommend it!!!

February 01, 2017 by Bonnie DiCocco

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