Right above the fish aquarium in our house is a magnetic basket that holds all the thank you cards that our family has received this year. The collection started because I didn't want to put beautiful, heartfelt thank you notes written by our family and friends into the recycling bin. The problem is: what am I going to do with them eventually? I can't hang onto them forever. I am going to get one more use out of them by reading the cards again with the kids. Even though we read the cards when we first receive them, I thought it would be impactful for my children to see how many people do write thank you notes and remind them how it feels to be appreciated. Not everyone writes a thank you note and I'm not saying that everyone should. But to me, Thanksgiving is the perfect culmination of all the thank you's we have received and have given throughout the year(s). Thank you cards = Thoughtful pinches.
Speaking of thanks, when my kids were younger, I would interview them on Thanksgiving day to hear what they were thankful for. Then I would write each response on a separate sticker leaf and decorate a picture of a tree for each child. We ran out of the paper that inspired this tradition which was fine by me because I felt that it was time to graduate onto another tradition. I found the perfect compliment to what we have been doing for all these years! Thanks to my good friend, Allison, we have started the "Turkey on the Table" tradition this year. Not only is this turkey A-D-O-R-A-B-L-E, it is totally functional! The feathers represent the updated/current items that we are grateful for this year and I plan to hang onto the feathers for years to come. What sealed the deal for me was that the company provides a Thanksgiving dinner for someone in need every time a Turkey on the Table is sold. Turkey dinners for people in need = Thoughtful Pinches.
Whether you write thank you notes or not, I'm pretty sure you are thankful for what you have. And even if you don't write on cutesy, cartoony leaf stickers or turkey feathers, I am sure you can name a few things that make you feel grateful. April George and Kerry Maunus, the creators of Turkey on the Table, wrote on the back of their book, "Not only is gratitude a learned behavior, research shows that it is linked to happiness." Imagine researching gratitude. Think about the data that they collected in order to arrive at the link of happiness. I'm curious, are there any disputes to that theory? Gratitude (thoughtfulness + thankfulness) = happiness. Nope, no disputing on my end. Have a Happy Thanksgiving!