November, the month to focus on our blessings and express our thanks. So on November 1 we headed out to the woods to find sticks for our Thanksgiving tree. Hurricane Sandy left lots of great limbs to choose from, all laying on the floor of the woods behind our house. We had fun hunting for just the right branches. There are no pictures of that excursion because there was no camera. Just the ones I mentally took to save and remember in the years to come.
I was very excited that we actually got the tree going on the first day of November and had enough leaves cut out for our first few days. The kids help to trace, cut and tie. But we don't do it all in one sitting. Six family members x 30 days in November = a lot of leaves. So we work on making more leaves throughout the month. When we all sit down for dinner in the evening each person choses a leaf, writes their name and what they are thankful for. Day 1: All the kids decided they were thankful for Missy, my first baby, our 13 year old dog. Mommy was thankful for music that helped keep her sanity that day. Daddy was thankful for his kids... (mommy wonders if this is because he was at work for most of the day). Some days it doesn't get done and that's okay. I don't want holiday traditions to ever feel like a to do list. When we have friends come over we ask them to fill out a thankful leaf and add it to our tree. In our home friends are family and their blessings give us reason to rejoice. At the end of the month we will take them all down, remove the yarn, and glue them into a book. My children may never have baby books completed but we will forever have a book to remind us of God's incredible blessings to our family. And this year we are especially thankful that we need one extra set of leaves for our tree.