I suspect that just like junk drawers, every home has a “change jar”-a place where loose change from our pockets, purses and couches winds up.  Some folks let it accumulate for a particular purpose – special treat, dinner out, a movie, etc.  Our mother had a little ceramic kitten that she and and a couple of local granddaughters used to save Christmas shopping money.  It was a ritual of great magnitude to pull the plug on the little kitty and see how much they had saved during the year to buy presents for their parents.

It is suggested that a jar is the best container, so you can see the level of coins rise as time goes by. I am a nut for cute/pretty boxes.  I use this  little box from Hobby Lobby, a company that prefers warmer climes. They  haven’t found their way this far north so a visit to Oklahoma always includes a stop at Hobby Lobby to purchase things I didn’t even know I needed or couldn’t live without – thus this leather/brass box.

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There really aren’t any rules to saving coins in your container of choice, but here are a few guidelines:

Never give change when paying for things-get change back and put it in your change jar.   Never raid the change jar.  Maybe have a goal in mind and involve the family. If everyone is watching the coins pile up there will be a greater tendency to clean the couch and see what is hiding there.  When you see a penny on the sidewalk, pick it up.   Oh, and keep the container in your highest traffic area – that way it acts as a prompt to deposit your change.  Ours in on the hutch just off the kitchen. You can’t go anywhere in the house without going past it.

Since it is just the Mr and me (and the pup can’t count yet) we get impatient and turn our coins into dollars frequently usually with an ice cream run to Cold Stone.  There are folks, though, who acquire many, many $$$ – all from diligently saving coins.

I turn mine in on those machines they have around. There’s usually a small fee.  Some banks will take a pile of coins and give dollars back for no fee, but most of them prefer you show up with coins wrapped which is a great teaching tool for kids.

Businesses have discovered the magic of “change back” and now ask if you would like to “round up” to the next dollar for a donation to a certain cause. I have been asked for both cash and credit card transactions.

YOUR TURN

Would love to know about your “change jar” or your pretty “change box.”