Thanksgiving Traditions: How Does Your Family Give Thanks

Every family has their own special Thanksgiving traditions that they take part in every year. It might be the special dessert that your aunt makes for everybody or how the family gets together for a game of bingo with grandma after dessert. My family had a kids vs. parents touch football game for many years that we all looked forward to very much. I think people should make a point this year to teach their children what being thankful for is all about. All the time families lose sight of what the holiday is truly about.

A post that I saw today on Grandparenting with a Purpose was really wonderful. It was all about teaching the younger members of your family what Thanksgiving should be all about. Giving thanks to God and spending time together are what is really important, and this post titled “What is Your Thanksgiving Family Tradition” is something that all families should read.

I’m curious, how does your family celebrate Thanksgiving? Do you have any special traditions?

Volunteer Work: Ways to Involve Your Whole Family

Volunteering your time to help others is always a great thing to do. It seems like more people like to do this around the holiday season which is helpful. Whatever causes it, the holidays always seem to get people thinking about what is most important in life. It is encouraging to see volunteer efforts, no matter the cause. If your children are old enough to volunteer with you I strongly believe that is a behavior that you should encourage them to perform.

A recent post on Mom Life Today gave “25 Ways Your Family Can Serve Together This Holiday Season”. If you are looking for ways to involve your entire family in your volunteer efforts this article could really give you some stellar ideas.

What is your favorite way to volunteer and help out your community?

Indoor Family Activities: Good Ways to Spend Time Inside

In a recent post I talked about playing board games with your kids and how it can be a fun and educational experience for all those involved. In regards to that topic of fun indoor activities to do with your family, there is more to share. A recent post on Mommy of Two Little Monkeys titled, “5 Activities to Do Inside When the Weather is Bad”, had some more wonderful ideas I thought were worthy of sharing.

What are some of your favorite activities to do with your kids when you are stuck inside for a day or two?

Exercising: Finding Motivation as a Parent

Sometimes it can be really hard to find the motivation to exercise. There is always something going on at work, with the kids, or with your body that just makes you feel like tomorrow might be the better day to go on that run. One of my favorite quotes is, “Tomorrow is often the busiest day of the week”, and this quote can apply directly to motivating yourself to action. Many parents can relate to the fact that with work and kids at home exercising is just not a top priority, but there are people out there who are finding the time.

Recently on Everyday Kings, Vee posted about her experiences running and how it helps her cope with grief. The post is called Running Through Grief and her analogy of running to life in general is beautiful, and she is probably one of the most inspirational bloggers I have ever encountered. I enjoyed one of part of her post though that is different to everybody. She talks about how running leaves you alone with yourself. Your own mind will take over without the distractions and you could find yourself thinking about things you normally wouldn’t. This is going to depend on what rests in the deepest parts of your mind, and will be different for everybody.

I felt Vee’s story was a good one to share because of how inspirational her life is, and also to show that many people with all sorts of different life situations are finding ways to exercise. Exercise will clear your mind and help you focus on what is truly important to you and your life. If you have experienced a trying time in life recently or are struggling with family or personal issues, a regular exercise regimen can help you feel better about yourself. It is truly amazing how much exercising, whether it be running, walking, playing a sport, or lifting weights can do for you as a person not only physically, but mentally as well.

Thanksgiving

I have been thinking about this for awhile now, since Halloween actually, but couldn’t find exactly what I wanted to say about it.

While shopping for my daughter’s Halloween costume (ran out of things in the house to use as a costume), a week before Halloween, I was shocked when I had to walk past the Christmas trees and baubles to get to the Halloween costumes. In a Jerry Seinfeld voice I couldn’t help myself, I said “what’s up with that?”.

The stores have had their product ordered more than a year ago and the stuff couldn’t wait just three more weeks to be displayed? Why is it that we complain about stuff like this but how many do anything about it? You could call, email or even hand-write a letter and I’m sorry to say it wouldn’t do much good. Really the only way to get retailers to allow one holiday to pass or even get close, before getting ready to “sell” the next one is to effect their “bottom line”.

Can you just imagine what would happen if the stock sat on the floor unsold for three weeks? Do you think there would be massive price reductions? Each year that we as consumers allow the season to start earlier is more incentive for retailers to begin “selling” it to us earlier.

I, myself REFUSE to buy a single Christmas present or listen to a single Christmas jingle UNTIL Thanksgiving. I do enjoy listening to Christmas music ON Thanksgiving.

We are now a 24/7/365 society. This can’t be good for us. Have you ever really missed out on anything really important because you didn’t get it early or first? I have found some of the best gifts shopping on Christmas Eve. Actually when you think about it you can shop for next Christmas, the day after Christmas this year which could cause retailers to consider display “Christmas” year round? I know, I know, there’s the Christmas Tree Shoppe. I thought on-line shopping was going to be the solution to this? You can shop on Black Friday in your pajamas so why go out at 5am.

I know this sounds all bah-hum-bug but really it’s not. I would love everybody to stop, relax and enjoy each and every holiday that we have each year. I just don’t see anyone relaxing much anymore. I just want to shout “Stop I want to get off” this crazy train.

Don’t you remember the wisdom of “stop and smell the roses”? It’s important that we not pass-by the opportunities we have to spend time with loved ones, share stories, laugh and sometimes even cry because we didn’t have the time.

My Thanksgiving wish is that this very special holiday for our nation will bring comfort, peace and a true feeling of thanksgiving to all.

God Bless,
Erin