As Thanksgiving approaches, here’s a fun family craft and activity to foster a thankful heart in yourself and your family members. A grateful heart is especially important to have if cooking and hosting are not your forte.
Some individuals love the holidays and everything involved with them; the time with extended family, planning, shopping, cooking, entertaining. Others find the season stressful, dreading the anxieties and tensions that can run high during the last two months of the year. If the later rings true for you, this activity can help you center your heart on all you truly have to be grateful for each day, bolstering your spirits for the season to come.
Fill a medium to large sized heavy-bottomed vase or pot with dry branches and make leaf “ornaments” to hang on the branches. Before your Thanksgiving meal (or however it fits in your schedule) you’ll each pick out a leaf from a basket placed next to the tree, write one thing you’re thankful for on the leaf, and hang it on the tree. During your meal, you’ll have a beautiful visual reminder in your home of all you have to be thankful for.
Here are a few ideas for making the leaves:
- Since you’ll be writing on the leaves, you can simply cut leaf shapes out of paper bag material and craft paper in colors you like for a rustic, shabby chic look. Make patterns of leaf shapes you like by tracing leaves from your yard onto a piece of thin cardboard. Use these as your template.
- Download and print leaf illustrations as pictured below for a fun artsy look. Cut each leaf out and write on the blank backside of the image.
- If you love being crafty and creative, let your imagination run wild and get as intricate as you’d like! You can find fabrics or papers that coordinate with your décor and make your tree a real work of art!
To hang the leaves, simply punch a hole at the top of each leaf, and make loops out of string or use ornament hooks for easier hanging.
Remember to find a container to hold the leaves, and a separate container for different colored pens and markers so there will be plenty of choices and enough writing materials to go around when you all sit down to write together. Place both next to the tree for a complete gratitude station!
Let us know in the comments if you do this craft and how it helps you be more grateful this season. We always love to hear from you.