Creative Child

Make this Thanksgiving Meaningful

by Sarah Lyons on Oct 27th, 2017

When we think of Thanksgiving Day, delicious food, football, and getting together with family and friends come to mind. The original purpose of Thanksgiving was to show gratitude and give thanks for a bountiful harvest. Now as we celebrate Thanksgiving it is easy to get caught up in distractions like football games, Black Friday shopping, and the quest for the perfect meal and table settings. We tend to forget all about stopping to give thanks for all of our blessings. Make this Thanksgiving meaningful by starting some family traditions that help everyone in the family stop and count their blessings.

Make a list

One way to remember your blessings is to acknowledge them. Go around the dinner table and have each person name something they are thankful for. This could be done each night at dinner during the month of November or for the week leading up to it. On Thanksgiving Day, have all your guests do the same. It is heartwarming to give thanks for the blessings we have. Looking for a more concrete idea? Have everyone write down or draw a picture of what they are thankful for. After everyone shares their paper, place them all in a three ring binder. Each year add to the binder and reflect on all the blessings of the past. “We do a Thankful Tree throughout November.” says Stephanie Loux, mom of three. “I draw a tree to tape on our pantry door and the kids cut out leaves from construction paper. Each night we all write one thing we are thankful for on a leaf and tape it to the tree. Kids can be grateful for a variety of things from butterflies to Elsa. We look forward to this tradition every year.”

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Donate to charity

Christmas is right around the corner and many kids will receive new items as gifts. In anticipation, have the kids help clean their closets and toy boxes and set aside items they no longer need. Donate gently used toys and clothing to a local charity or family in need. This process will not only reduce clutter around the house but it will teach the kid to be generous to those that are less fortunate than they are. In the same spirit, talk with your kids about how some people may not have coats, hats, and gloves to keep them warm during the cold winter months. As a family, collect hats, coats, scarves, gloves, and blankets to donate to a homeless shelter. Gather items you may have in your home that you are no longer using and ask friends and family to do the same. Go to the store and have the kids pick out items they would like to give to another child their age.

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