Make your own calm down jar or "mind" jar in lieu of a physical time out for kids. Or to calm yourself! Img: via Pinterest from

I saw this on Pinterest the other day, via the awesome Here We Are Together blog.  It was meant for children, but honestly I can see how it couldn’t hurt for adults too.  I mean who doesn’t get stressed during the day?  Or angry or upset about something?  Why not make your own “Calm Down Jar.”  I’m thinking you could keep one at work on your desk or at home for when the kids are fighting.  When the glitter settles (and it’s both calming and mesmerizing to watch it happen) you feel magically calmer.  Your kids can pick their color for their jar too, so it’s a fun activity to make with them.

Here We Are Together describes it perfectly: A Mind Jar is a meditation tool to use whenever a child feels stressed, overwhelmed or upset. Imagine the glitter as your thoughts. 

What You Will Need (instructions at the bottom of the page):

  • Mason jar or baby food jar.  Really, any kind of watertight jar will work.
  • Hot water
  • Food coloring
  • Glitter
  • Glitter glue

Glitter Glue, available at craft stores like Michael's and online at Amazon.

Use a small tube of glitter, lighter glitter works better. Heavier glitter or shapes fall faster.

Food coloring for coloring the water in Mood Jar

Food coloring for coloring the water in Mood Jar

Here’s How:  (Instructions from Here We Are Together)
“Mix 1 Tbsp of pink glitter-glue with about 1 cup of hot water, then added pink food coloring and a tiny tub of glitter. The glue makes the water so thick and gooey that the glitter just slowly and gently swirls around, it takes about 5 minutes for all the glitter to settle, perfect to gather your thoughts!”

I’ll be making some of these this week.  One for each child, and maybe one for me too!



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  1. Very cool! I know what we’ll be doing for tomorrow’s project. We’ll do it outside though, because no amount of meditation helps me deal with having to clean glitter out of carpet for the rest of my life.

  2. I really like this idea! I suspect you might want to put some superglue on the inside of the lid when you put it on to keep it from being opened by curious children, because I’m thinking that neon pink glitter water and carpet don’t mix well.

    • Ah yes. I once made snowglobes as an art project at my daughter’s school and neglected to properly secure the tops of the dollar store jars and it all ended very poorly indeed.

  3. I tried this , followed all your directions, product. All I am getting is glitter glue pile and glitter dump at bottom of jar – and I’ve been shaking it for half hour. Doesn’t take 5 min to settle either. Mine’s down in less than 1 min.

  4. Does the color ever sink or separate from the water? How do you make it stay consistently mixed?

  5. This looks really neat! I’m thinking of making one for my toddler, hoping it helps calm him when he throws a tantrum! Thanks for the post!

  6. I can not seem to get the glitter to drop slowly it only takes about 30 seconds. I’ve tried more glue and it still doesn’t go any slower. could the water be too hot? I need help.

  7. I would suggest plastic jars with the lids glued on. Just in case…

  8. Karo syrup is in with the baking stuff at any local grocery and it really slows down the glitter. We used a peanut jar (plastic) with about 3/4 water, then filled the rest with Karo and dumped in some glitter. Glued the lid shut and we’re ready to shake!


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