November 1, 2011

Showing Gratitude Through Posters, Leaves, and Letters

For the past several years we’ve had an “I am thankful for” poster hanging in our home during the month of November.  Each member of our family wrote things they were thankful for on it throughout the month.  Visitors to our home were encouraged to add something they were thankful for as well. 

Just a few weeks ago, I came across our poster from 2009.  I was getting ready to throw it out when suddenly something caught my eye.

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Here, in my grandmother’s handwriting, is what she was thankful for that year.  My dear grandmother just passed away in August.   I can’t describe to you how special seeing what she was thankful for in her own handwriting has meant to me.  I miss her so.

This year we will still be writing down what we are thankful for, but we will be doing something a bit different.  We plan to capture our gratitude all month long through leaves and letters.

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This is a picture of our Thankful Tree today on November 1st.  It is nothing more or less than a collection of branches put into a pot.  We will be adding “leaves” cut from fall colored papers to our tree throughout the month.  Each leaf will have something we are thankful for written on the back side.  It’s a visual counting of our blessings.  As our tree fills, we will discuss how we can share our blessings with others.  I hope to soon add a leaf that says “our painted walls”! 

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In addition, each week we will write Thank You notes/letters and mail them to someone who has blessed our life in some way.  This will be a good Sunday afternoon or Family Home Evening Activity.

For both of these projects I’ve made due with things I already have around the house and yard.  I think that in itself is a way of showing gratitude.  Don’t you?

On a related note:  For the past two weeks our family has been working on the quality of our family prayers.  They had become rote and for some the “thankful” part had become nil or non existent. My husband and I decided we needed to focus on that part of praying.  It’s really been an eye opener for all of us.    The person offering the prayer can only express gratitude.  It’s encouraged us all to look a bit deeper for the blessings we have.  Once this becomes easier for everyone, we plan to resume our regular prayers of not only giving thanks but in requesting righteous blessings - hopefully with a bit more thought in the offering.

How will you count your blessings this Thanksgiving Season?

NAN buttonDana is thankful for her family, her home, and for the many blessings that come from being a daughter of God and striving to live the gospel of Jesus Christ. You can follow their homeschooling journey at Noggins & Nonsense.

4 comments - Add a comment below -:

Jessica said...

I love your thankful tree! I'm now planning to add one to our November! Great post! Thank you!

Deila said...

Great idea, I like the tree, and I want to see it at the end of the month!

Family Style School said...

Great ideas!!!

I have had the same feelings with our prayers.

Abby said...

What a great idea for prayers, thanks for sharing!