Family Thankful Tree :: Focusing on the Season of Thanksgiving


The holidays are upon us. Our Halloween sugar rushes are over. So it’s time to please pass the Peppermint Mocha and crank up 104.7 FM.

Wait, mommas. Slow your roll. If you are like me, I tend to gloss right over Thanksgiving. Instead, I count down the days until I can turn on my Christmas lights without annoying the neighbors. This year, I’m trying something new.

I want to slow down and appreciate the spirit of the Thanksgiving holiday and enjoy the fall season.

Since my son is nearly three and old enough to join in the festivities and (sort of) understand, I set out to find something that could focus our family on the season. I am not a crafty person, and I pretty much hate art projects. Regardless, just such a crafty, art project had piqued my interest in years past.

thanksgiving treeI had noticed on blogs and Pinterest a fun project designed to focus the family on thankfulness. You may have seen or heard of making a family thankful tree. Basically, you and the kiddos craft up a tree to place on the wall or table. Then, each day leading up to Thanksgiving, a leaf is added to the tree with something the family (or individual family members) are thankful for.  Go ahead and search “thankful tree” on Pinterest and you’ll find many different ideas and even free printables. Or check out Iowa City Moms Blog’s take on the family thankful tree.

I love the idea of teaching the concept of thankfulness to my toddler through a visual medium all while helping us focus on this season of gratitude.

But, as I said, I am not crafty. And seriously, who has a printer these days (oh wait, am I the only one who doesn’t?). I do love Hobby Lobby though and knew I could find something that would help me get this project done without too many tears or curse words.

After wandering around several aisles, I came across a tree in the metal wall décor section that was (hallelujah) 50% off! I moseyed on over to the fall/Thanksgiving aisle and found discounted leaf place cards. All in all, my supplies cost me just two Grande Peppermint Mochas! I hauled my stash home, hung the tree on the wall, and stuck my first leaf on. It’s pretty cute!

Explaining the concept of thankfulness is a little tricky with a toddler. For my son’s first leaf, I told him to think of something or someone he is so happy to have–something or someone who is special to him. His first reply was “yellow” . . . after some further clarification, he then shouted “mom!” I swear, I did not prompt him and may have shed a tear while writing down his answer.

Our family has enjoyed hanging our leaves each day. I look forward to seeing how full our tree is on Thanksgiving. How does your family focus on this season of thanksgiving? Share your ideas with us!

More ideas can be found here:

Oklahoma City Mom: Thankful Tree Center Piece

Austin Moms: Holiday Crafts

Dallas Moms: 10 Activities To teach kids Gratitude

Originally published November 2017.

The opinions expressed in this post are those of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of ABQ Mom, its executive team, other contributors to the site, its sponsors or partners, or any organizations the aforementioned might be affiliated with.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here