The Blessings Jar is a “warm, fuzzy” boardbook. Written by Collen Coble, illustrated by Rebecca Harry and published by Thomas Nelson, Inc. (2013), it helps children think in a concrete way think about being thankful.

Punky Grace begins her day with a case of the grumps. Her good friend is ill and cannot come and play. To help Punky, her grandmother suggests that she and Punky have an adventure. They will look for the ways that God blesses Punky, and then they will place mementos of those blessings in a glass jar. Parents or grandparents will enjoy sharing with young children the story of Punky’s day. They may even begin to think about and talk about items they might collect for a blessing jar of their own.

While the book is quite re-readable, I think it is the prospect of their own blessings jar that will capture the imagination of its readers. I think children will want to try to have an adventure like Punky’s. Readers need not use a glass jar. A clear plastic tub with a lid might also work. It won’t match the attractiveness of the clear glass jar in the illustrations, but it will not hamper the fun of the activity.

Rebecca Harry has created illustrations that are colorful, active and child-friendly.

Nancy Ellen Hird is a mom, a writer and a credentialed teacher. (She taught seventh grade and preschool.) Two of her published works for children are Marty’s Monster and Jessica Jacobs Did What?  Her latest work is I Get a Clue, a mystery novel for girls 10-13. For several years she was a freelance reviewer of children’s and teen’s literature for the Focus on the Family website.

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