Sunday, January 15, 2012

Thankful Jar

So last holiday season was...well...HORRIBLE.  Bart says it's really sad that I think that because we got two babies from last holiday season.   But seriously, that was the one redeeming quality of the end of last year.  True, it's a pretty big redeeming quality, but still!

My two older girls were in California.  We spent countless hours in the NICU riding an emotional roller coaster. And I was recovering from an emergency c-section and some serious blood loss.  Really, not fun. Someday I will blog about it....someday.

Anyway...this year I was determined to make up for last year's...lack of jolly-ness...and we started with the Thankful Jar. 
Thankful Jar
 For each day in November up to Thanksgiving, we picked a paper out of our Thankful Jar that listed something we were thankful for, and then did an activity that related to it.  I photographed that activity, and we wound up with an entire scrapbook full of perfect images depicting what we were thankful for and what we did every single day up to Thanksgiving that we will cherish forever.

Well...that's what was supposed to happen.  Then life happened.  We did pick a paper out of the jar every day.  But I have to admit, more than once we wound up not doing the activity.  Some required going to the store, or library, or somewhere, when it was closed, or Sunday, or just really inconvenient.  So, admittedly, some activities didn't get done.

There were also a lot of activities that we did do that I didn't photograph. But eh, we had fun.  The kids loved it, and it was awesome starting off the day highlighting something to be grateful for.

I've heard of keeping gratitude journals where at the end of the day you write what you were thankful for that day.  But after this, I think I like the idea of doing it the other way.  Pick something you're grateful for and then really work on appreciating it for the whole day.  :)

Anyway, here were some of the activities we did do that I actually photographed:

I am Thankful for my Teeth! 
Give Mom & Dad some Halloween Candy & Brush & Floss.  
(Bart & I liked this one...I may or may not have purposely put it at the top of the jar.)
Thankful Jar Teeth 

I am Thankful for Grandparents!
Call and tell them "I love you.  I am grateful for you."
I really enjoyed listening to Hannah try and say, "I'm Grateful for you"  Grateful is apparently a rather complex word for a two year old.

Thankful Jar Grandparents

I am Thankful for my Hands!
Art Project: Finger Painting, or Drawing.

I am Thankful for Turkeys!
Art Project: Make Paper Turkeys
Thankful Jar Turkeys

And this one's kind of a combination of two:
I am Thankful for our Kitchen
Bake something fun together in the kitchen!
I am Thankful for my Dad!
Do something nice for Dad.

(Bart had been asking me to make a pumpkin roll for ever.  So when we picked "I'm thankful for dad" the day after we didn't do the kitchen activity, it worked out perfectly.  :)

Thankful Jar Dad

And...that's all I got.  I know, kind of pathetic.  I only photographed 5 (6 if you stretch it) of our 24 days of thankfulness.  But, eh.  Like I said,  we all enjoyed it and benefited, even if we don't have a scrapbook full of perfect pictures depicting our "Thankful" November.  :)

Oh, and, if you want to make a Thankful Jar for your family, but don't really have time to come up with a bunch of ideas for activities, Somewhat Simple has a whole list you can just print and cut out here.  At the very least, it's a great start and then you can supplement with things that are applicable to your family.  :)

P.S.  I DO know that thankful is spelled with one l.  When I tried to fit "thankful" on the side of the jar, it was too small, and Thank-ful just looked well, unbalanced.  So I like to think of it as, "We are full of thanks...we are thank-full." :)


janae said...

I think photographing five is a great accomplishment! Better than none at all, which is what you would have done without the goal. So I call that success. That attitude may explain why I don't struggle with the typical woman's guilt complex about motherhood. :)

Bart's Rebecca said...

Yeah, totally. It's funny, I used to be the type of person that if I made a goal to do something daily and then missed even a day I would feel like a total and complete failure, but since having kids, I've pretty much gone in the opposite direction. (Maybe a little too much at times) ;)

I still like to make lofty goals, but when I don't completely fulfill them, I am just happy that I did better than I would have if I hadn't made the goal. :)

Katie said...

This is such a great idea! I would love to start something like this at our house. We are always trying to teach our girls to be thankful and grateful for what they have. Love the idea to photograph as well. I'd be lucky to get 1 photographed let alone 5!!!

cee + kell said...

love this idea so much! and i love your attitude about rolling with 5/6 pics.i don't know how you even got that many! with just one little girl, i'm happy if i got it together enough to brush my idea how you manage with four! i'm in awe, my friend. love reading up on your family's adventures. we miss you guys a ton. thankful (and full of thanks! for good matter the distance.

Heather T. said...

You got some really SWEET photos in that post--love the lighting you get. I'm sorry you had a lousy holiday--I hope this year starts off better for you!

Anonymous said...

What great ideas :) ilove the pictures too!