Thursday, October 13, 2016

Equip Your Kids So They Show Their Thankfulness!

Yesterday I posted about what a truly thankful life looks like, so today I want to encourage you to go beyond thinking about what a truly thankful life looks like to taking steps to equip your kids so they are able to show their thankfulness! When we are truly thankful people, our thankfulness will overflow into the lives of others, so look over the following ideas and select at least one then use it to help your kids show their thankfulness!
  • Hat creation day . . . your upper elementary age kids and older are old enough to learn to crochet. I'm providing a simple pattern for a crocheted hat - collect yarn, crochet hooks, recruit a few ladies in your church who know how to crochet and get your kids busy making hats which they will be able to give to families in need of warm hats!  I found this free pattern on-line at Wanderlust - You will need one skein/ball of yarn per hat and a "J" hook. To start:  Ch3.  Sl st in 1st ch to create a ring. Round 1:  Ch 3 (counts as 1st dc always) Work 9 dc in ring.  Sl st in 3rd ch of ch3. (10 dc) Round 2:  (Do not turn in this pattern) Ch 3, 2 dc in each st around.  Sl st in 3rd ch of ch3. (20 dc) Round 3:  Ch 3, 2 dc in each st around.  Sl st in 3rd ch of Ch3. (40 dc) Round 4:  Ch 3, dc in next 3 st. *2 dc in next st. 1 dc in next 4 st* Repeat from * to * around.  Sl st in 3rd ch of ch3.  (48 dc) Round 5:  Ch 3, dc in next 4 st.  *2 dc in next st. 1 dc in next 5 st* Repeat from * to * around.  Sl st in 3rd ch of ch3.  (56 st) Round 6:  Ch 3, 1 dc in each st. around. Repeat Round 6 until the hat reaches desired length (try it on as you go to make sure it's a perfect fit for you!)  When I do this pattern, the had usually reaches the desired length after about 13-15 total rounds Last Round:  Ch 1, sc in each st around.  Sl st in 1st ch.  Weave in all ends. Have a crochet party; involve your kids - possibly entire families - in making hats and then give them to families in need of warm hats!
  • Food drive . . . this is a pretty typical Thanksgiving service project, but it is for a good reason. In our churches and communities there are families who struggle to put enough food on their tables. Holding a non-perishable food drive is a very practical and needed project - and one which is pretty easy to involve your kids. Help them make fliers to distribute throughout their neighborhood listing a specific day when they will stop by their neighbor's homes to collect any non-perishable food items their neighbors are willing to donate. On the appointed day, collect the food and then take it to your local food pantry.
  • Warm coats and blankets drive . . . again, this is a pretty common project for this time of year for a very good reason . . . it is cold outside and there are families where children do not have warm coats and blankets. This is another project where you could make fliers asking for new/gently worn coats and blankets and then set a day to go collect and distribute to your local clothes closet. 
These are just a few ideas, pick one - or all of them, or come up with your own ideas, but make sure you do something to equip your kids so they are able to allow their thanksgiving to overflow into the lives of others!

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