Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Thanksgiving Ideas, a Photo Contest, and a Great Giveaway

Someday soon, I'll post about Halloween and about the kids' crazy-and-now-finished Cross Country and Volleyball seasons and about our fun family trip to Arches for fall break. I've got posts half-done. But as you can tell, I haven't had time to blog much lately! There are so many beautiful and not-so-beautiful little things that happen every day and that I want to capture so Instagram has been great for that. If you want more than this slowed-down blog can give, you can always check out what we're up to at Instagram - photos most every day at http://instagram.com/sarenloosli


I LOVE Thanksgiving. So I wrote a whole post about it on Power of Moms - sharing 9 fun and simple ways to focus the whole month of November on gratitude and the joy that comes with it. Here's my post: 9 Ways to Fill November with Thanksgiving

And we're doing an instagram gratitude photo contest at Power of Moms this month. All you need to do is post a photo (or one each day if you're ambitious) of something you're grateful for (your baby's cute little toes, your teenagers rare smile, your just-fixed dishwasher, beautiful fall leaves, whatever speaks to your heart . . .) and include #gratitudepowerofmoms plus @powerofmoms in your post to "submit" it. Then the week before Thanksgiving, Power of Moms will pick five winning photos from all those submitted and the posters of those five winning photos will each receive a Power of Moms program worth up to $100. 

So post photos of what you're grateful for and you'll feel extra grateful plus you'll maybe win a great prize.


Finally, here's a little guest post from my dad and mom to explain a little giveaway at the end of this post:
In our family, Thanksgiving has always been the "key" holiday.  So many of our traditions have centered on Thanksgiving, and we always felt it was the perfect lead-in to Christmas and the perfect harbinger of the holidays.  After all, what could be a better precursor to Christmas and to celebrating the birth of Christ than all kinds of gratitude and Thanks-Giving!

Early in our marriage, we decided that rather than get into the Christmas Card frenzy, we would jump the gun a bit and send out a Thanksgiving Card each year.  We have done that now for 44 years, and the cards actually tell the story of our family.  The pictures that went with the cards each year show the growing up of each child, and the poems we wrote to go with the photos trace the pattern of what had happened each year and where our gratitude was centered.

Finally, as Thanksgiving continued to mean more and more to us, we decided to write a book about gratitude, and about the connections of Thanks-Giving to Joy, to Peace, and to family security and unity.  Since much of what we wanted to say was about feelings, we felt the book needed to be as much about pictures as about poetry and prose.  Luckily, we have some great photographers in the family, and we were able to use their work to illustrate the book.




As it was finished this fall THE THANKFUL HEART has become not only a how-to book on the ways to enhance and magnify gratitude, but a kind of short hand history of the Eyre family (Eyrealm as we call it) and we could think of no better way to start "getting it out" than on our wonderful daughters' blogs.  The publisher has agreed to a little give away where you can comment on this blog and go into a drawing for free copies.  And for those who don't win a book (we've never won a drawing in our lives) it is now on sale at Amazon HERE.

The subtitle of the book is a good summary:  "How Deliberate Gratitude can Change Every Texture of Our Lives."


And the back cover quote is the essence:  "Gratitude does not lead to happiness; gratitude is happiness in its most obtainable form."


Hope you love it,  Linda and Richard Eyre

*** I get to give away a copy of this beautiful new book! Share your favorite Thanksgiving tradition or idea for expressing gratitude and I'll randomly select a commenter to receive a free book, shipped right to your door. I'll announce winners on Saturday, November 8th.

36 comments:

Susan said...

our favorite Thanksgiving tradition is pie and a puzzle night. The Wednesday before Thanksgiving we have pie [since everyone is too full on Thanksgiving] and put a puzzle together as a family. We usually include "pizza pie" too! Its a great tradition that I look forward to each year.

Heather said...

My favorite Thanksgiving tradition is making apple pies together with my family.

Susan said...

Whilst we don't celebrate Thanksgiving in Australia, I do try to give thanks every day. I also try and instil this in my 3 sons - even though that does create some impressive eye rolling from my 13 year old!

Sarah said...

I know this is a fairly common one, but we always make a "Thankful Tree" with the kids, and display it in a common area (dining room, living room, etc) so they can view it. They are young (3 and 8), so it's good for them to really grasp the idea of what being thankful means.

Katie said...

I love getting together with our extended family and enjoying dinner together. My grandma makes the best homemade pies!

green said...

a Special hike to revel in the glory of God's creations with my daughters and husband and speak of what we are grateful for. Glorious!

Barb said...

We do a little construction paper thankful tree.

mbrady said...

I love the puzzles and pie idea mentioned in the first comment - what a fun idea! Our favorite way to express gratitude is through writing/sending thank you notes. There is nothing quite like a handwritten note to express your gratitude for someone and the influence they've had in your life.

bjahlstrom said...

This sounds like a fantastic book, and would be so wonderful to read this season. My favorite Thanksgiving tradition is when my entire extended family goes snowmobiling the day after Thanksgiving to hunt for Christmas trees. We roast hot dogs on a camp stove on the back of the trailer, and eat doughnuts and hot chocolate. We even bring the little kids to do circles on the snowmobiles in the meadow. After we pack up the trees on the trailer and head back home, we all go to my grandma's house, where she serves us three different homemade soups to warm up from the cold day! It is the best!

Danielle E said...

I love Richard and Linda Eyre and am excited for their new book! We have recently started the tradition of writing all that we are thankful for on our sliding glass door and windows in dry erase markers.

Alyssa said...

To be honest, besides eating a ton of food, I don't know of too many thanksgiving traditions growing up, unfortunately. Not that I don't have fond memories, I simply can't think of anything we did every year! My young family and I are moving to our first home soon and look forward to starting new traditions. I hope to simply cut up pieces of paper, write what we are thankful for, and put in a jar to read on Thanksgiving Day. I've been reading Eyre's books and loving all the traditions they've implemented. I'd love to read this book!

Ludlows said...

We have a family tradition of cutting down a Christ,as Tree the day after Thanksgiving on our family's property. I always loved it as a child and now that I am married have not been able to go as often but we are looking forward to creating new traditions together.

Kimberly said...

I have been going to my granny's house each thanksgiving day for 46 years. We watch the Macy parade in the morning. Then eat at 1:00. After eating we all create some crafts together. Last year it was a Christmas banner and an ornament. We spend a lot of time talking. Granny will be 90 in August. I know my years with her are fading but I cherish each year. Your parents' new book sounds great! I hope I win! Thanks

Rhonda Dow said...

My favorite thing about Thanksgiving as a child was seeing my cousins! My cousin Marie and I always had a blast together. Now that I have kids of my own, one of my favorite traditions as a Mom is the Thankful tree, one of many ideas I have stolen from Shawni!
I can't wait to see this book. Your family is just amazing!

jill said...

We started this tradition six years ago this Thanskgiving and it is still our favorite. During the Thanksgiving dinner, I keep strips of colored paper by my plate, though everyone could have a few at their spot just as easily. As we go through the meal we write down things we are grateful for on each strip. At the end of dinner we make a paper chain with them to hang up as part of our Christmas decorations. Then each day after thanksgiving, as we count down to Christmas, we take off a chain and read the listed item and discuss (again) why the writer wrote it and why we're each thankful for that one thing. It's a month of thankfulness in a season where it's so easy to be selfish.

Fay said...

Our Thanksgiving tradition is running the local town pumpkin dash in the morning before coming home to our Thanksgiving feast. So very thankful for my family's health and happiness.

PS said...

I'm always grateful to Abe Lincoln for declaring Thanksgiving a national holiday. As the daughter of immigrants and a non-Christian, I've always felt Thanksgiving is the ultimate immigrant holiday. When you grow up being a minority in the United States where a lot of the traditions are related to the dominant religions (though this is changing now), it's nice to have one holiday that is somewhat secular and is about coming together in peace and being thankful for each other. In a way, the Pilgrims were among the first immigrants to what would become the US, and although their history with the Native Americans was rather bloody, they were able to feast together at the first Thanksgiving. And, I suppose, that gives me hope. (OK, I did not answer your prompt - our Thanksgiving traditions are having dinner with my parents' oldest friends' families and going to the movies while the turkey is cooking).

Erin said...

The post Thanksgiving dinner walk. The stress and craziness of the dinner prep is over and we enjoy being with family and the beatiful world we live in

The Denning Family said...

We do what your parents did, fill up a long roll of paper with our gratitude!! Obviously, I would love to hear more from them and win that book! ;)

Rosie Liljenquist said...

After the food is eaten and the dishes cleared, my family (husband and three almost four kids) settle down to watch the Charlie Brown Thanksgiving movie (and then we eat more pie :))

J and J Bowen said...

Every year we trace the kids and our hands and wrote a thankful on each finger and a goal for the year in the palm. Then we hang each child's thanks Fula on the door or above there bed so the can see it often. They never want to get rid of them when the seasons change;). We still have a few of last years still up.

S said...

We do the gratitude tree with each leaf something we are grateful for - fun to see them all attached to the tree!

Lucius Cambell said...

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time of the year. And holding a photo contest is just a great idea for it. Because we all know moms love to take pictures of the family especially on holidays. So I’m pretty sure this will be pretty easy for them. Cheers!

Lucius Cambell @ Skild

Steoger's said...

Unfotunately, I don't very many Thanksgiving traditions. However, it's nice to have your own little family to try to create some.

MaurLo said...

We have a felt turkey we hang on the wall that has a pocket tummy. All month long we try to stuff our turkey with things we are thankful for each written on a slip of paper. The best part is after we read them, we just leave them inside and put it away so that a year later before do a new "turkey stuff" the littles pull out the slips from the year before and giggle at their handwriting and some of the things they listed the year before. Thanksgiving is a wonderful holiday though. Can't wait to read another book by your parents. They are always inspiring!

RachelS said...

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday! I try to keep the thanksgiving spirit alive all year by having my kids write in their gratitude journals each Sunday. We all sit down together & write 7 things we are thankful for from the previous week. On Thanksgiving, we pull out our journals & reflect back on all the things we have been thankful for through the year. It is a lot of fun & my kids love it! Thanks for the chance to win the book!

Brittany Immesoete said...

I create a "thankful tree" in my Kindergarten classroom. The students write what they are thankful for on a leaf and it is on display for all to see!

Melissa said...

We have a sports party with all my cousins the Saturday after thanksgiving.

Kerstin said...

I'm German and we don't celebrate Thanksgiving. In November, we (at least those with kids)celebrate Saint Martin. He was a Roman soldier who shared his coat with a poor man. Kids go on walks with lanterns and songs are sang. And on 11/11, there often is a reenactement of Saint Martin and the poor man.

Monica Geary said...

We love doing the "Thankful Tree" during the month of November to help us remember our blessings. I also write in a gratitude journal whenever I can-- I do this all throughout the year-- and it helps me to see what's most important in life and how many things I have to be thankful for!

Jennifer said...

We add feathers to a paper turkey and write what we are thankful for on each feather.

Camile said...

I've loved reading all of the ideas. We have also done a thankful tree. And sometimes we do pie on Wednesday night because we are always too full after Thanksgiving dinner.

Jodi said...

I always watch the parade with my mom, even if we're far apart we will call each other and watch part together on the phone.

Jess said...

Our favorite tradition is our Thankful tree. We cut out a big tree out of brown butcher paper and hang it on the wall. I die cut a bunch of leaves in fall colors (one per person per day). Every morning at breakfast in November, we each pick one thing we are thankful for and write it on a leaf, and hang the leaf on our tree. I love the leafy tree full of blessings by the time Thanksgiving rolls around!

Emily said...

We've enjoyed heading outside for a fun run in the morning when weather allows and the past few years have copied Shawni's thankful tree with colored leaves. Thanks for the giveaway!

Lauren-B- said...

My favorite tradition is simply our extended family gathering for lunch on Thanksgiving. I love spending time with my grandma, aunts, uncles, and cousins because we have so many happy memories, for which I am very grateful!

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