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Annette's Notes, Issue #012 -- Thanksgiving 2008
November 12, 2014

Thanksgiving 2008

“At midnight I will rise to give thanks unto thee
because of thy righteous judgments.”
Psalm 119:62

Something—muffled footsteps?—awakened me at 6 o’clock Thanksgiving morning. I had stumbled into bed a mere five hours earlier, well after praying with my children and sending them happily to bed.

In my foggy-sleepy condition, I headed downstairs to discover the source of the furtive noises. Halfway down it dawned on me that I probably should have awakened my husband or grabbed a baseball bat…or something. But as I hesitantly took another step, I was met by our two youngest children headed up the stairs with secretive looks on their faces. Ten-year-old Emily quickly ducked into her bedroom, but I caught Logan, age 8, and asked him what they were doing up so early. He said they were writing their “thankfuls” for the Mayflower.

Our Mayflower is a “ship” made from a paper-covered orange juice carton with bamboo skewer masts and white paper sails. Every Thanksgiving for the last several years we have filled our Mayflower with little slips of paper detailing things for which we are thankful.

“So you got up early to write things you’re thankful for?” I asked, feeling a bit of pride in their taking the true meaning of the holiday to heart.

“Ummmmm,” Logan hesitated, “Emily decided to write 50. And she said I had to, too.”

It was then that I realized they were not up early: they had been up all night!

“You stayed up all night to think of 50 things each that you’re thankful for?!” I asked incredulously.

“Well, we did some origami too.” (He had checked out a book on origami at the library earlier in the week.)

I was kind of aggravated with the little turkeys because I knew they were going to be tired (translated: grouchy) for Thanksgiving dinner. Plus, Emily had wanted to help make dinner, and I knew once she finally went to sleep, it would be nearly impossible to pry her out of bed. Sure enough, we woke her up three times before she finally got out of bed around noon. She made it to the kitchen in time to set the table beautifully and mash the potatoes.

Here, in no particular order, are the 50 things for which each was thankful that memorable Thanksgiving (extra commentary in parentheses).

Cranberry (he single-handedly ate our whole can of cranberry sauce), food, cat food (the cat would die if he didn’t have food), cereal, leg (he got a pain in it, so that reminded him it was there), boats, vehicles, trucks, floor, lights, buses, school, life, pizza, hats, Landon, sweat (it cools you off, so you don’t get too hot), God, pillow, candy, lamp, lap, crayons, toy cars, Mikayla, Dad, Mom, origami, books, stuffed animals, water bottle, flowers, macaroni, myself, history, CD, kindness, movies, Bible, Emily, toys, cat, beds, and 7 illegible items (even he couldn’t decipher them).

Church, seasons, dresses, fabric (without it, you couldn’t make dresses), Bible, books, paintings, painters (without them, you wouldn’t have paintings), food, math, spelling, sister, money, stuffed animals, scissors, paper, lakes, myself, love, handwriting, showers, dictionaries (spelled incorrectly), toys, computer, numbers, libraries, roads, God & Jesus (she knows God & Jesus are one), grain, origami, cars, plants, P.T. (Puddy Tat, our cat), Mom & Dad (Mom & Dad are apparently one also), washers, crayons, clothes, a brother (she actually has two), hair, portable (DVD player), words, friends, a body, a bed, coloring books, holidays, the English language, coats, cookies, and noses (to smell the cookies, of course).

We always read our “thankfuls” right before we eat Thanksgiving dinner, so the turkey and mashed potatoes may have been a bit cold by the time we got through those 100 thankfuls, in addition to the lesser amounts contributed by the rest of the family. However, my heart was warm, refocused on the true abundance of the holiday, with the help of the bountiful thankfulness of two persistent children.

“…a little child shall lead them.”
Isaiah 11:6

Think About It

Ask yourself:
  • Could I demonstrate more thankfulness?
  • Could I encourage others to be more thankful along with me?

Challenge yourself:

Write down 50 things for which you are thankful. If it seems a little difficult to think of that many things at once, exercise your “thankfulness muscle.” Start with 10 or 20 and work your way up. Make thankfulness a daily habit.

If you would like some Thanksgiving activities and ideas you can use in your classroom or with your own children, click here: Thanksgiving Activities

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me. I love hearing from you!

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