Thursday, November 10, 2011

thanksgiving tradition ideas from jen of the arizona russums!

Aloha friends! As we gear up for the holiday season, I have a special guest post for you today! Jen blogs over at The Arizona Russums and she is one of my awesome November sponsors! She's got some great ideas for Thanksgiving traditions for you. (I've closed comments for this post, so make sure you hop over to Jen's blog and follow that girl!) 

Hi! I'm Jen and I blog about life, love, faith and all things home management over at The Arizona Russums. I am so excited to be here with y'all on Lindsay's blog today! 

As I gear up for my first Thanksgiving as a wifey, I have started to think about what kind of holiday traditions I want to start for my family. My mom was always amazing at family traditions, especially for the Christmas season. From advent wreaths to calendars, from homemade gingerbread  to lasagna on Christmas Eve, our annual trip down to Seattle to look at Christmas lights followed by dessert at The Cheesecake Factory, to writing letters to Santa the night before Christmas to reading Luke 2 as a family before bedtime, our home has always been a place where Christmas was special and Jesus was praised throughout the holiday season. I am sure I will steal a bunch of my mom's Christmas traditions when I have my own children someday, but I also want to make Thanksgiving special as well. It's such a fun and important holiday but I feel like it often gets overlooked as Christmas draws near. So here are some ideas to really celebrate Thanksgiving this year...  

1 :: Party for a cause. When you host a party between Halloween and Thanksgiving, consider asking guests to bring non-perishable food items to collect for a local food bank. For our women’s ministry event this month at church, we are asking women to bring food to donate when we meet for happy hour next week.

2 :: Show and Thanks. In my family, we all go around in a circle before Thanksgiving dinner and every person says one thing they are thankful for over the past year. I recently read about a fun spin on this idea {especially for younger kids}. One mom got tired of hearing everyone say the same thing year after year {a roof over our heads, good food, family, etc.}, so she challenged her family to bring one item for which they are thankful to Thanksgiving dinner and share why it was important. The items brought ranged from i-phones that allowed her family to keep in touch with loved ones far away to a letter from a teacher who was a mentor to her teenage son. Presh.

3:: A Thankful Tree. This is a fun project that allows reflection and results in an adorable decoration at the same time. Basically, you collect branches outside and bunch them together to form a "tree" and place them in a vase or pot. You then cut out fallish-colored paper in the shape of leaves. The goal is to have different people write things they are thankful for on each leaf and tie them to the tree. This makes a great centerpiece for the Thanksgiving dinner table or also looks great in the entrance to your home during the holiday season. You can either have your family members write on a leaf each day in November and slowly add them to the tree or it can be a fun project for Thanksgiving day if you have each guest that arrives write on a gratitude leaf!

Here are some things I would add to my thankful tree this year...

{Gingerbread lattes... yum! // New babies // Visiting Grandma and Grandpa // Pretty autumn sunsets}

Thanks for letting me hang out with you at Aisle to Aloha today! I hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving holiday!


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