A couple of months ago, a friend of mine gave me a stack of her old Martha Stewart and Real Simple magazines. Recently, I was paging through them and ripping out the ideas that I liked. One of my favorites was this paper leaves of thanks craft. The kids and I had a great time drawing and cutting out leaves together. But most importantly, we were all energized by writing down (or in the kids' case, expressing) all of the things that we are thankful for. The kids wanted to add more gratitudes today and Dan and I have found ourselves making and adding leaves after the kids have gone to bed.
It reinforces for the kids (and for us!) that Thanksgiving is really about giving thanks to God for all of our blessings. We're leaving the bowl out as a concrete reminder of this. As we continue to add leaves until Thanksgiving, perhaps it will even cultivate a more grateful spirit within us all.
Other great ideas in Martha's Thanksgiving edition (2009) are this recipe for pumpkin pie spice which she recommends adding to whipped cream and using as a topping for pie or warm beverages. Also, my mom and I made this apple cranberry crumble which I thought was both easy and delicious!