"From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets, the name of the Lord is to be praised." Psalm 113:3

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Thanksgiving Blessing Counting

I'm getting this urge. I'm pretty sure I get it every year, around this time. The urge to STOP. The urge to ENJOY. The urge to SIMPLIFY.

Yep. I'm pretty sure I get it every year.

I'm also pretty sure I never follow it.

But that ends this year. I promise. I really, truly want to enjoy this holiday season (and by holiday season, I also mean Thanksgiving. The holiday that gets skipped and passed by. The one that means more to me every year as I get older.)

We're making a good start, my family and I. We have taken this week off from all things school-related. (And my kids are fighting like animals and I'm remembering why we keep pretty structured school days, but that is NOT the point of this post ; ).

We (my husband and I) have already shared our wonderful, liberating idea that our children should include only five things on their Christmas ("gimme") lists. After all, Jesus only got three gifts. So far, only one child has dared to challenge the Jesus idea.

I have decided not to itemize and dole out all of the "really good" ideas to relatives to ensure that my children received all of the "gimmes" that they requested. This year, I have let the relatives know what kinds of things interest the kids and let them take it from there.

I am buying for others what I think they would like. And I'm enjoying picking out for each niece, nephew, cousin individually, instead of playing "how many gift cards can I fit into my hands?"

I will not be putting up every. single. one. of my Christmas decorations this year. (Although, to be fair, we will be moving shortly after Christmas, so that is really more a sanity-saving, practical decision than anything else. But hey, it fits!)

We will officially be working on Christmas School, beginning next Monday. I don't really know what that means or what it will look like, but it sounds exciting. I'll have to let you know what it actually turns out to be!

And we are trying to add a little more "what-it-means-to-celebrate-holidays" spirit into all that we do. We have started a Thankful book. It's a beautiful journal that sits out on the kitchen table or counter, and it is open to everyone--both those of us who actually live here and those that just pass through. It is a numbered list of our blessings. (Thank you, Ann Voskamp!) I've been doing this most of the fall on my own, and on a whim decided to try it with the kiddos and the hubby. It has taken off. We love it. It makes me happy.

It makes me so happy that I'm going to ignore the spelling errors. *wink*

It's a wonderful, in-your-face blessing count. It puts us all in a mood of gratitude. We smile when we write in it and we smile when we read it.

It reminds us of what is truly important. We STOP, we write, we ENJOY, and we SIMPLIFY.

Pretty simple idea, pretty big impact.

I hope you all are having a wonderful, blessing-filled week as we get ready to kick off the "most wonderful time of the year."


  1. I love this. I think I will start our own Thankful Book this year. Thank you!

  2. I'm so glad! This has been a blessing in itself for us this year. Hope you all enjoy yours!



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