“Addie what are you thankful for?” I say, taking a swing of my morning coffee while wiping up applesauce and yogurt that’s been swirled all over my son Ollie’s tray. My daughter reaches into the basket and carefully chooses a paper leaf. She uncaps the pen and draws looping lines all over the back. She holds it up, saying proudly “Mommy, Lucy, and God.”
As Thanksgiving nears, I’m struck how quickly I start each day focused on what needs to be accomplished and not resting thankfully in the reality of what God has already accomplished for us. As a family, we’ve been collecting things to be thankful for and hanging them on branches of a “tree”. Although I began this practice to cultivate gratitude in our children, I see I need the reminder just as much to be grateful that God is the giver of all things.
Here’s some suggestions in creating your own Thanksgiving Tree:
1. Place some branches in a vase. Cut out paper leaves and hole punch them.
2. Each day during a meal, talk together about what everyone is thankful for. Write the items on the leaves and add them to the branches.
3. Praise God for His provision and faithfulness.
I got the idea from Ann Voskamp’s blog, A Holy Experience.
Here is a post with printables and scriptures references for making your own Thanksgiving tree: http://www.aholyexperience.com/2012/11/a-christian-family-thanksgiving-activity-the-thanks-giving-tree-free-printable/