The day after Halloween I needed to stop at our local grocery store. Not only did I spy all the Halloween candy, costumes, and decor already marked down on clearance prices but I spotted the lonely tiny Thanksgiving display marked down nearly as much as the holiday that had just passed! To top it all off, the store employees were busily switching all of the seasonal section from Halloween directly to Christmas.
While I know that Thanksgiving is not as retail-friendly as the massive costume and candy purchasing of Halloween, or the gift and decor spree that comes with Christmas, I would still like to see some Thanksgiving cornucopias and giant turkeys sticking around until mid-November.
If you too would like to give Thanksgiving a bit more focus in your home than it gets in the retail sphere I’m sharing a few simple ideas below on how to help cultivate an attitude of thankfulness with your family this month.
“Thankful” notes are a great way to get older kids (upper elementary through adults) to recognize the things they are thankful for. Throughout the month have everyone write down things they are thankful for on notecards or small pieces of paper and collect the papers in your favorite container. Read all the notes at your Thanksgiving celebration. Younger kids can participate with some help from older siblings or parents who help write for them.
“Thankful” Turkeys can be a fun way to get younger kids thinking about the things they are thankful for. Simply trace hands, and add a beak & feet to make turkeys. Then have (or help) kids write something on each ‘feather’ that they are thankful for. If kids are especially excited about this craft you can use large pieces of construction paper and make placemats for each person at your Thanksgiving celebration listing specific things they are thankful for about that special person.
Never underestimate the power of books and movies. Our whole family enjoys watching “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving” each November and I make sure to read “P is for Pilgrim: A Thanksgiving Alphabet” to my kids in the weeks leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday. I love how the book can be a quicker read for younger kids or a more in-depth learning experience for older kids.
How do you and your family celebrate Thanksgiving or remember to be thankful during this month?