I sort of dropped the ball this year when it comes to great fall projects. We always do autumn crafts and art activities and we try to venture out for pumpkin-picking and other fall fun.
But this autumn was packed with more weddings and funerals, travel and sickness, and overall BUSYNESS than we usually have to deal with this time of year. Now it’s nearly Thanksgiving and I’m left with this sad feeling that the season has passed me by and I missed it! I never even got my front porch decorated for fall! Oh, the regret…
But I’m complaining. And complaining isn’t thankfulness. And though we should have a thankful heart year-round, OF COURSE we should have one as Thanksgiving approaches!
Which gave me an idea for a perfect, late-autumn project!
Building on the idea of a Jesse Tree, something we’ve done often at Christmas time, this is our family Thanksgiving Tree, a little reminder of all those things we have to be thankful for.
It’s simple, inexpensive to make, and very… fallish. (Is that a word?) Best of all, as long as it sits on our table it is a constant reminder of God’s goodness.
To make your own, send the kids out to hunt small tree branches while you dig out a mason jar. Use as many or as few sticks as you want and trim them to be as long or as short as you want. This is supposed to be a rustic-looking tree, so it doesn’t have to be perfect.
Fill your jar with walnuts, mixed nuts, dried beans, or even candy corn.
Then of course you need construction paper in fall colors. I was fortunate enough to have a leaf-shaped punch, which was perfect for this project…
But you can easily make leaves on your own without a lot of complicated cutting. How hard is it to just do this…?
But you could even use real leaves, provided they’re not too dry and brittle.
When you’ve accumulated a pile of leaves, add a hole with a hole punch.
Thread string, yarn, or fishing line through the holes. I used jute twine.
Then let the kids be thankful! Let them write anything and everything they’re thankful for, from Jesus and their family and friends to their favorite toys and video games. If you have littles who aren’t quite up to writing what they’re thankful for just yet, allow them to draw those things instead. (Note: If you use real leaves, you’ll probably need permanent markers instead of pens.) But make LOTS of leaves! You might be surprised how many things your kids can think of to be thankful for!
|Good answer, kiddo!|
|Yes, that says Wi-Fi.|
Might not hurt Mom and Dad to throw in some examples there, too…
|The older I get, the more I come to appreciate some things…|
Tie them all to your tree, scattering the colors to suit your fancy. Or do a tree in a solid color if you prefer. My tree was a little full, so scattering a few on the “ground” seemed appropriate.
Add a bow or knot of jute string or burlap and you’re all done!
Our Thanksgiving Tree is working as our table centerpiece for the time being. And I love the way it reminds us of God’s overwhelming blessings upon our family.
So what are YOU thankful for?