SAY thank you!! - No, I'm not kidding- seriously take the time to say thank you and mean it. We are all living fast-paced lives and need to work on this (myself most definitley included). If you have little ones, the best way for them to learn this is with you leading by example. Instead of always nagging at them (like I do) .. saying "say thank you to Mr. Smith.." let them see you saying thank you and showing true gratitude and genuine appreciation. Also, say thank you at the table before digging in to your meal. It doesn't have to be a religious Grace, but just a little something
to give thanks for the meal and the family and friends you're sharing it with. My son's preschool has a sweet little poem they recite before they eat that I'm bringing in to our house: "Thank you for the food we eat, thank you for the world so sweet, thank you for the birds that sing, our family, love & everything."
Create a Thankful Jar- I've seen more and more of these and I LOVE it!! Start with Thanksgiving, and if it works, keep it going throughout the year, or at least at the next family gathering. Take a large mason jar, decorate it however you wish, and leave slips of paper for each person to write what they are thankful for. Read them all gathered around the table or on the couch.
Start a Gratitude Journal- This season, think about starting a gratitude journal to document your blessings. One or two times a week, or whenever you can make quality time for it, write about what you are grateful for, blessed with, excited about, and maybe a special event, place, or person that you are happy to have in your life. If you have kids, try doing this with them at whatever level their at. So if you have little ones like me, get a kid friendly journal with blank paper where they can draw pictures of what they're thankful for.
Send thank you notes- whether it's to say thank you for a gift, a gathering, or a helpful gesture, take a few minutes to send a handwritten thank you note. If you have kids, help them do the same!
Do Random Acts of Kindness- Perhaps it's leaving a token for the mailman out in the snow, or buying a coffee for the person in back of you, try to practice RAK often! If you want to take it a step further, try a RAK Advent Calendar this season. Either make your own which your could easily do, or find a printable version online. I bought a printable version from Emily Ley that I love (and even better she donates all proceeds to the Cystinosis Research Foundation).
GIVE BACK- Be thankful for what you have and give to others. This is really one that should carry throughout the year, but again the holidays is a perfect season to get started and there is certainly more of a need. A really simple way is to check with your local food pantry and see what they need. If you have kids, get them in on this.. have them help you collect items in the neighborhood or at their school, or even go through your own cupboards or make a trip to the store. If you're hosting, Thanksgiving or a party, maybe ask your guests to bring a donation. The opportunities are endless.
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone! Take time to be thankful try to have a wonderful and hopefully relaxing day with family and friends!
Thanks as always for stopping by; I am truly grateful.