Messages in a Mason Jar


Since it is still only the second week of January, I thought I would share a new tradition my family started in 2011.

Mr. Cabana and I have always made it a point to celebrate the New Year with Buddy and Baby Girl, whether it be playing games at my brother’s house or having friends at our home.  We just want to be with them.  Because we know, sooner rather than later, they are probably going to want to be with their friends, not hanging out with us when the New Year’s Eve Ball drops at midnight.


New Year’s has always been a special night for Mr. Cabana and me.  It really is the night that started it all for us.  A mutual friend of ours happened to invite Mr. Cabana to a New Year’s Eve party I was having when I was 18 years old and still living at home with my parents {I told you I have always liked throwing parties!}.  We rang in 1989 New Year together {my father told friends that night, “Looks like W. found a new friend!” Little did we all know!} that night and every New Year for 24 years!!!!



New Year’s Eve 2011, I thought it would be special if we all wrote letters to our future selves to be read on New Year’s Eve 2012.  We had a quiet night with the kids, our nephew and Buddy’s best friend.  I really was not sure how the teenager boys would respond to my suggestion of writing a letter.  But to my surprise they loved the idea!!!  Throughout the night we placed our letters into a vintage mason jar a dear friend had given me.

I placed the jar on a shelf where I would see it periodically throughout the year.  A couple of time the kids would mention the letters they had written to themselves exclaiming that they really had no idea what they had written.  I guess 3, 6, 9 months is forever even to teens!

Buddy decided to have a small party with close friends this past New Year’s Eve, so I wasn’t sure they would really want to read their letter that night.  How wrong was I!  As soon as midnight struck, they wanted to read their letters.  Buddy and his best friend were so sweet to allow me to read their letters as well.

I was so pleasantly surprised to see how thoughtful the letters were.  They wrote about who was important to them at that time of their life, favorite movies, songs.  What I though was so special though, was how they wrote about themselves and what they wanted their 2012 self to know about how they feel and their goals.  It is not often that teens take a moment to reflect on who they are and who the want to be.  And I had letters to prove that they had done just that!

Buddy's best friend and Buddy

Buddy’s best friend and Buddy

Baby Girl is always game for whatever I throw out so I knew she would love this idea.  Her letter was so sweet and encouraging.  My favorite line, “…do not be afraid to try new things.  But of course only good things.”  Oh how I love my girl!

Mr. Cabana is always a man of few words and while I had to pester him just a bit to join in and write a letter, he did add a note to the jar.  It was one sentence, but boy did it say so much!!!  I will treasure it always.  My own letter wasn’t terribly profound although it was written from the heart.  It was special reading a nice letter to myself  from me.

 Perhaps like some of you, I have that negative voice in my head that says negative things to me that I would never dare say to anyone else.  This letter was a reminder to be kind to myself first.  And because of that, I did make some pretty big changes in 2012 that I am very proud of.  Who knows, maybe putting pen to paper helped to make a difference for each of us.  I know it did for me.


We have our new letters in the beautiful vintage mason jar, put away for another year, waiting to be read after the ball drops…

Until next time,

Butterscotch Lady

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