Thanksgiving Tradition

Like nearly every Mom on the planet, I long to give my kids traditions. Those things that they will tell their kids about and look back on with nothing but fondness….things that will cause their faces to light up and their hearts to give a silent shout – “Man, I love this family!” and “My Mom really IS the best!” But alas, even the best laid plans fail. I make the cocoa too hot – they don’t decorate the cookies to my liking so I take over – I yell when they don’t share the gingerbread house decorations – that is what they will probably remember most clearly!

So, we don’t take part in EVERY tradition. We can’t. Life then would become about the check list and not about the moment. There are things my friends do and I think – “That is so cool! We should do that!” and then I realize no, we can’t. Plate is full. Overflowing as it is. I don’t want them to remember the overflowing plate but rather the handful of things that truly meant something. Enter in: Thanksgiving posters.

We started this tradition in 2005 when the Handful of Deffenbaugh’s was just a quartet. We got white paper on a roll, cut off a 5 ft chunk, labeled it “Thanksgiving 2005” and let each kid draw a picture and write out what they were thankful for that year.

They are so stinking cute! Hand print turkey’s are a popular drawing, as well as the first Thanksgiving dinner scene and for the boy, Indians shooting pilgrams with arrows (huh?). The list of thankfuls are always fun. Squanto makes the list each year – that cracks me up. And we’ve even had someone thankful for Buzz Lightyear (proving that this is truly a kid made list not edited by Mommy!) What I really love are the thankfuls that are consistent year to year:
God and Jesus
Our family
Our friends

After Thanksgiving I run our poster down to Mardel’s and get it laminated for $0.25 per foot (another reason I love this tradition — it costs me about $2 a year!). Each Thanksgiving we get out all of the past years posters and hang them up around the dining room. The kids have fun looking at them all day, remembering what they wrote, seeing improvements in both their writing and drawing skills, and remembering that no matter where we have lived or who celebrated with us that we are blessed….truly blessed.

And that it will be 365 days until the word ‘Squanto’ is written again.

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Published in: on November 29, 2011 at 10:56 am  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I love this!!! Why didn’t I think of that (or atleast hear of it before they were too big and cool for that stuff). Wonder how I can make cool for a 9 (almost 10) and 12 year old???

    Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks Heather! I bet you could start a Thanksgiving book or journal for your girls — same concept but in book form vs. posters. Girls would then be much more likely to sit and look through a book! My sister in law does that for Christmas and it is great!


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