Today’s Table Talk is by my dear and wise friend Cindy McWhorter. On a day to stop and be thankful, she is one woman in my life for whom I give thanks. She has taught my children and mentored me (as well as countless other moms in our neighborhood). She purposefully parented her two grown kids and continues to groom leaders for the next generation.
Thanks for sharing Cindy … and thanks for walking the road with me.
Here are a few ideas that you might enjoy over the Thanksgiving holidays.
1. Prior to the Thanksgiving meal, place three (or more) kernels of dried corn in each person’s plate. Pass a bowl around the table and each person tells three things they are thankful for as they place the kernels in the bowl. You may wish to keep a Thanksgiving journal and record each person’s three blessings. In subsequent years, you can look back over prior blessings.
2. The children may wish to make the placemats for the Thanksgiving meal. There are many different ways you could do this. One simple way is to cut brown butcher paper into placemats. Then the children can decorate them with crayons or markers. They may choose to draw the things for which they are thankful. Be sure and date them. Then the children can have fun crumpling the paper and then flattening them back out again to make it look like an animal skin. They could also fringe the sides. Laminate them if you wish to save them from year to year. You can also make them from burlap and let them sew designs with fall colored yarn.
3. The children may wish to make turkeys. One way to do this is to use one pine cone for each turkey. The child or the mom could cut out the turkey head and several multi-colored feathers. Some of the things the child is thankful for could be written on the feathers and then they are stuck in the big end of the pine cone. The head is placed on the small end of the pine cone. Another very simple way to make a turkey is to cut out a shape similar to a bowling pin. This is the head and body of the turkey. Then multi-colored feathers are cut out of construction paper. The children can cut fringe on these feathers and then blessings could be dictated by the children as Mom records them on the feathers. Then they are glued to the body.
4. Read story books with the historical account of Thanksgiving. There are many excellent books on many different levels.
5. Make a Thanksgiving banner each year. Record each family member’s blessings. Date each one and get them out and read them each year.
6. Read George Washington’s Thanksgiving Proclamation every year.
7. A tasty turkey may be made with the following ingredients: Oreo cookies, chocolate frosting (may be from a can), malted milk balls, candy corn, and red hot candies. Separate the Oreo cookies into two parts. Smear both halves with chocolate icing using a plastic knife. The chocolate icing acts as glue! Place one half of the cookie on a flat surface. Place the other half at right angles with the one on the flat surface. Place a malted milk ball in the junction of the two cookies. This is the body of the turkey. Take candy corn and stick them to the vertical half of the cookie with the small ends pointing to the center—toward the malted milk ball. These will be the tail feathers. Finally use a little icing to attach the red hot candy to the front of the malted milk ball to form the head. These are a lot of fun to make and the children will love having them for their special dessert!
8. Each year, play the same games with the extended family and record outcomes. Have a tug-of-war and record the winner. Have a jump rope contest and record how many times each person can jump without missing. Record the winner of the egg toss, horse shoes, flag football, whatever you wish. Make additions and revisions each year.
9. Go on a nature walk and collect fall items to use in a centerpiece or mantle decoration.
10. Make a gift basket and deliver it anonymously to someone in need. This happens all of the time at Christmas, but what better time than Thanksgiving to share our blessings?