Thanksgiving used to make me so nervous! My whole extended family would get together and before dinner we would go around the table and say what we were thankful for. I was a shy and awkward kid and I hated being the center of attention. I would break out into a sweat when the we sat down at the table and I couldn’t breathe easily until my turn had passed.
One of the things that scared me the most was coming up with something clever or cute or important to say. I was a teenager – I wanted to impress the adults in my family. I worried about everything when I was younger (and still do I guess). I would have benefited from sitting down and thinking about what I’m thankful for in advance.
With that in mind, I created this beautiful printable gratitude list to help your guests be more comfortable expressing what they are thankful for at Thanksgiving. When you welcome them in the door, hand them a pen and a color printout of this list and tell them to get in the spirit of Thanksgiving by writing down all the things they are thankful for.
Then before you start your Thanksgiving feast, go around the table and ask your guests to say what they are most thankful for from their list. Then they can keep the list as memento of their Thanksgiving and a reminder of all the things they are thankful for.
Even though I was completely stressed out as a young teen, that tradition is the one thing I look back on and remember as the best part of the holiday with my family. My extended family no longer live near each other, so we will never get together like that again. But I intend to keep the tradition going strong with my children as they get older.
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