Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Celebrating Thanksgiving :: Our Thankful Tree

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays to celebrate with my family.  I love its simplicity, both in its message and in the way it's still celebrated today.  There is no fanfare (in the way our culture has added it to so many other holidays!)...it is still just a simple day spent with our loved ones, giving thanks together for the many blessings we have been given.

I'm pretty sure it's one of my children's favorites, too!  They begin counting the days as soon as the calendar flips over to November, and General starts calculating how many servings of mashed potatoes he thinks he'll be able to polish off this year!

Over the weekend, I brought out our little collection of Thanksgiving books and began the conversation with my children about what the true meaning is for this holiday.  Always a good reminder for them and for me!  It has been especially fun this year, though, because Little Monkey is just old enough to begin to understand the story.  It is a sweet blessing, indeed, to see my older children teaching the little ones the things I taught them not so very long ago!

I have seen the idea for a Thankful Tree in several places over the past few years, and have always thought it would be a nice little project to do with my kids.  Inspired by Joy over at Artful Homemaking, we decided to finally give it a try this year.  It was so much fun!

We collected several leaves in different shapes from our yard, and then used crayons to make leaf-rubbings on plain white paper.  We wrote a few things we are thankful for on the back of each cut-out leaf.  LM needed a little help understanding the idea, but once he got it, he had a very specific list - trains, books and chairs.  And crayons.

Some other items listed - God, the Bible, food, family, beds, friends and cows.  (Cows give us milk and ice cream!)

We used an old pickle jar for the tree's container, some rocks from the yard as a filler, and a few sticks to make the actual tree.  A very simple afternoon project for a simple holiday....and something I think we will all look forward to doing again next year!


  1. Good Morning Collette,

    So Funny... I was just on your blog a moment ago, enjoying to the fullest this sweet post. I had to click out for a moment without commenting to help a little one go potty, and when I came back you had left me a comment on my blog. :-)

    Thank you!!! :-) Great minds think alike!!! ;-)

    I LOVE THIS!!!

    One of my friends from church was telling me about this idea too. I knew from what she was saying that I wanted to try it. BUT NOW.. I KNOW I want to try it!!!!

    Such as special afternoon with your family!!! So sweet to see your children working so hard at their project and their thankfulness!!!

    Pictures are lovely, I felt like I was there!

    We have been sick (Feeling almost back to normal now) and there is so much to catch up on that I almost put this idea out of my head until next year. I can see now though that I was wrong!!! :-) Looking forward to this project now!! Thank you for the inspiration!!

    Love Carissa

  2. Carissa, I'm so glad to hear you are all finally feeling better!! I completely understand what you mean about having so much to do...one thing I liked about this project was that it was fairly quick to finish - just a little more than an hour. If you make one, I do hope you'll post some pics! :)

  3. I've been trying to comment on your post for the last week already!!!l

    wish i had more time to tell you how wonderful thye are.

    restoring order in my home...a good one. and relatable. and so so true.
    and this one is sweet. a thankful tree. we did this last year and isn't it great!

    were doing one again this year too. a little different, but the same principle.

    I want you to know, I'm reading over here, but I just don't have the time anymore to comment as much as I want to...


    blessings to you my friend:)


  4. Collette,
    We did a thankful tree last year, and kids loved it! It was wonderful watching them write on the leaves all the things they were thankful for. :)
    Thanks for sharing.

  5. I'm glad you all take time for Thanksgiving. It seems to get skipped over at the stores and such. And it's great that you're teaching them to have a heart of thanksgiving... and a gratefulness for those who went before us.

  6. Oh, Collette, it turned out so cute! And what a great idea to do leaf rubbings with the leaves...I hadn't even thought of that!

    Your pictures are always so bright and clear (trying hard not to feel like I "need" a DSLR!). I especially love the first one, with that sweet, adorable little face peeking out!! Oh, that is so cute! :)

    Thanks again for linking to me!


Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment! Things are pretty busy around our house, so I can't always leave as many replies as I would like to. But please know that I look forward to reading every note you send my way - they brighten my day! Blessings,Collette

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