Tag Archives: thankful

Thanks…giving. Let’s be thankful…..

As I sit here on my couch smelling my turkey cooking, and watching the Macy’s Day parade in my pajamas, I have so much to be thankful for….

  • Thank you Lord for another day to love my husband, and share my time with my children. Thank you for my health…..
  • Thank you Lord for my husband’s tireless work ethic that keeps our family provided for and allows me to stay home and school my children. Thank you for his humor, his love, and his faithfulness to our marriage and our family.
  • Thank you Lord for my parents and the person they formed me to be. Thank you for their sacrificial love and the way they continue to love and support me.
  • Thank you Lord for my beautiful mother-in-law who is a true inspiration in her faithfulness and love. She has always made me feel like her daughter.
  • Thank you Lord for all my in-laws who are truly my best friends. I couldn’t have imagined the blessings they would hold for me.
  • Thank you Lord for the beautiful loveletters you sprinkle into my day to remind me how much you love me.
  • Thank you Lord for the amazing priests you have placed in my life to help me grow.
  • Thank you Lord for the faith-filled women in my Walking With Purpose bible study group and the way that they call me on to holiness.
  • Thank you Lord for the trials and blessings of this year which keep my family ever dependent on you.
  • Thank you Lord for my Franciscan University of Steubenville  family. Many of those friendships span 20 years, over multiple states and countries. I have prayed with many of you through tough medical crises, the loss of spouses and children, and financial hardships. You have been a constant reminder to me of the power of prayer and the strength of friendships centered in Christ. I will be forever grateful for how FUS changed me.
  • Finally, Thank you Lord for you……all of my faithful blog readers who read my thoughts, however inconsistent, and respond with such encouragement and love.

Praying that this Thanksgiving season will have your heart overflowing as you spend some time reflecting on God’s providence in your life. How truly great is our God!

God bless,

Tammi

 

 

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“Wait…this is the holiday where we just eat that big bird?”

“Wait…this is the holiday where we JUST eat that big bird?”

Wow….that statement by Miss Missy really had me thinking. The hubs and I have dedicated so much time into making traditions in our family for each holiday. The children look forward to our Lenten Tea during Holy Week, our annual “Running of the Alleluia banner” on Easter Sunday, our “Kids in Charge” Day over the summer, and our vast Advent/Christmas traditions. 

How did we miss having traditions for this holiday? I don’t think we have. I just think we’ve tried different things each year and haven’t “secured” the traditions yet. I  guess for us…it’s about sitting around the table with family and just being “thankful”. However, for my children, they need something more “concrete” to connect to this holiday so….here are some of the things we have done in the past/ or have decided to add to our festivities to really stress the importance of this season of “thanksgiving”.

 

1.) Make sure the word “thankful” or “thanks” is clearly present in your home. The children should come to expect to see the word “thanks” around this time of year. These little signs and reminders can be great sources of inspiration to little minds.IMG_7927

2.) Create places in your home that are reminders of the holiday. Our house, typically, has several areas that we adorn for the holidays. If I am slacking one year, one of the older children will often venture downstairs and grab the corresponding tote for that holiday, just to nudge me into decorating. I love that they love decorating as much as I do. The children helped me pick out these little adorable gourds one year when we were picking pumpkins at a patch. I thought these would look adorable as a centerpiece during the week of Thanksgiving. (You also can’t beat the dollar tree fake leaves.)

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We also love to have holiday books in a basket by our fireplace. These are some of our favorites that we have been using every year.

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3.) Get the kids involved in everything!!!  I love beautiful decor. I really do…but I don’t think beautiful has to mean not “kid-friendly”. I choose to decorate our humble abode with decorations that our children can help with. If you cringe every time your child touches a decoration, you don’t need that in your house. (that’s my opinion).

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One year, we made these adorable placemats for our children’s table. Now, we have only had a “children’s table”when we are hosting more people than can fit around our table. We laminated these and the kids loved them. You can find the link for these here.

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We also made these adorable “cups” for our table one year. You can see the link here.

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This past Thanksgiving, I also let my two older girls design our centerpiece using stuff that I had in our Thanksgiving bin. I find it adorable that they included little pumpkin name cards on each person’s plate.

4.) Start a “thanksgiving” tree. (thankful treeThe kids and I did this a few years ago and loved it. We kept it up through the first week of Advent and it’s a great reminder of all those people whom we are praying for. We add our leaves right to the tree, and then i leave extra “leaves” on the base for visitors to add theirs, or if the children want to add others.

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5.) Write letters of “thanksgiving” to family and friends. We are spending some time today, the day before Thanksgiving, writing letters to godparents, cousins, grandparents, or anyone else the children want to write. You can read about a letter I wrote Sweet Pea last year…here.

6.) Make a special recipe that honors someone who is important to you. We are making my grandmother’s famous stuffing. It’s the hubs favorite thanksgiving dish and a huge “crowd pleaser”. We will take some time to talk about my thanksgiving dinners as a child and how my grandmother and mom would make this recipe.

7.) Spend some time together doing “Christ-like” acts for those in your community. Print out some of our “Touched By His Light” cards and hand them to people while you helping them load their groceries in their van. Or maybe consider buying someone a coffee behind you in line. Send the mail man off with a card and some baked goods. Don’t forget to share some love with the parish priest…baked goods are always a hit!

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8.) Spend some time before dinner praying and giving thanks for all your blessings. Encourage your visitors to do the same. We usually go around and say reasons that we are thankful for each person. We allow this opportunity to really reflect on where we were last year at Thanksgiving. For me, it’s about this man. I’m a daddy girl…which is why I’m sure I’ve raised a few. haha. Last thanksgiving, he could barely walk. He was recovering from multiple organ failure and almost died. It was such a tough time for our family. Today we are so thankful for the blessing of another year with him.

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9.) Spend time with family. Last night, the two little girls and I picked up my parents to spend thanksgiving with. Today we will be prepping food, baking, and playing endless games with grandmom and grandpop. The hubs will take the big kids tomorrow to weather the cold for the annual family Turkey Bowl game. A few years ago, the hubs lost his wedding band when he placed it in his shoe during the game. I’m praying this year that he returns with all the kids…hahaha. I will be nice and cozy sipping on a mimosa and watching the Macy’s Thankgiving parade….silently praying that my husband does not injure himself. (please, Lord)

I snapped these shots this afternoon as the children shared old photo albums with grandpop.

10.) Photocopy fun Thanksgiving activities for the children to work on while you prepare dinner. 

My crew loves to have seasonal stuff to work on while I’m cooking. These thanksgiving bingo cards have already been laminated and are ready to go. Thanksgiving mad lids are loved by all!!!!

Most of all, this holiday is about us being thankful for all the blessings of family and friends. I know that I am tremendously blessed with our little family. I thank the Lord, daily, for the blessing of a hard-working, and dedicated husband who is also my best friend.

I pray that we all can remember the precious things in our lives and be thankful for them.

Happy Thanksgiving!

God bless, Tammi

Thank you, Lord….counting my blessings!

“Chicken Day”…

Miss Missy has been walking around for the past week asking me if it’s “chicken day” yet. She has been seeing this colorful turkey that I drew on our dry erase calendar, and she knows it must be important !

And, it is!!!

Turkey, Stuffing, and Gravy….oh, My!!!!

I love so much about this holiday. I love having an excuse to make a huge meal.

I love looking in my binder over what traditions we did last year and what we want to change this year.

I love setting a beautiful table and having the kids take delight in using real wine glasses and nice napkins.

But, when I sat down at my computer, I quickly became overwhelmed with the “LIST” in front of me : the chopping, the beating, the cooking.

How to get it all done without growing in frustration or impatience..

And then this prayer came to mind, “Open the eyes of my heart, Lord. I want to see you…”

As I look at my list, It is overwhelming.

But….when I see Miss Missy’s list of “I am thankful” items, it is a practical reminder of all the blessings in my life.

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Thank you Lord:

For the gift of my husband, who reminds me daily how loved I am,

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For the gift of my one and only son, who brings me such joy……

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For the blessing of four princesses, who show me true beauty inside and out….

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For the blessing of a home, and the warmth that it provides….

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For the blessing of sharing every day with this amazing crew and watching them grow…

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For the food that will adorn our table, and the blessing of never knowing hunger

Lord,

 May my life be lived in thankful gratitude for all that you have given me.

May my hands seek to reach up in thanksgiving, and out to those who need me….

May I never take for granted the blessings in my life.

For in Your Divine Wisdom, you have made everything perfect, tailored to me.

Happy Thankgiving to you and your family!

Because I’m thankful….

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How do you say “thank you” when a simple note isn’t enough?

Well…I guess you try and think of the ultimate “loveletter” for that person.

My life is full of blessings. There are so any things that I am thankful for….However, today’s post is about my amazing daughter, Sweet Pea.

When my husband started a new job in August, we were really not sure how it would change our home environment… But we have found that these initial orientation months are requiring more travel and longer work days. The housework still needs to be done. All the errands and activities continue just without another adult in the home. Saying that it can get overwhelming is an understatement. And… that’s where Sweet Pea comes in! From making dinner for her siblings; reviewing flash cards with the toddler; and making me hot cups of tea, she is truly been a blessing to me.

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She has such an amazing heart and can always tell when I’m at my breaking point. I can’t tell you the number of times that she has taken it upon herself to make lunch for the kiddos so I could finish a grocery list or gotten one of the littles dressed so I could grab a shower.

She was on my heart a lot when I was feeling especially sick this past Friday. Her cousin had asked her to spend the night for some much needed “girl time” and I was more than happy to see her go.

She had definitely earned it.

As I thought about that, I decided to surprise her upon her return.

What could I do for her that would be a “relief” for her?

Which brought about this…..

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The reorganizing and cleaning of her closet……

This closet NEEDED to be tackled soooo bad, however, I knew she had no idea where to start.

As the oldest, she always needs a new seasonal wardrobe….it’s just hard to tell exactly what she needs since her closet had various sizes in it.  Just looking in it, it seemed as though she had plenty of clothes, however, I knew her closet needed to be purged.

One trash bag later…and two bags of clothes later for the basement storage, it was done!!!

Then after the closet I moved on to her bed…

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I changed her sheets, febrezed her mattress, scrubbed her headboard, and remade it with her favorite quilt.

Then, I vacuumed her room and lit one of my favorite Yankie Candles to fill her room with a sweet clean smell.

Then I pulled out a new journal I had bought her…..and wrote her a little note. (pictured above)

Words can not tell you enough how proud I am of you and the great help you are to me. So I thought, maybe I can show you. I hope you enjoy your ” newly organized” room. Thanks again for all you do.

Love, Mommy

If you have someone like this in your life, celebrate them this week……

It’s a great time of year to be “thankful” for those tremendous blessings in our life.

Have a blessed week!

God bless,
Tammi