Unforgettable Thanksgiving Healthy Swaps

unforgettable thanksgiving (1)I can’t believe it ALREADY Thanksgiving. OR that it’s going to be nearly 90* here in San Diego this week! Eek! So crazy. The holiday season certainly sneaked up on me. You too?

I wanted to share with you some amazing recipes to add to your feast. It’s totally possible to have a delish meal made with amazing food and not feel bloated and blah afterwards.

And on another note….eat your veggies and your turkey first. That way by the time you eat some of the higher calorie foods (like the stuffing!) you’re likely to eat less cause you’ve filled up on nutrient dense foods.

And if you’re wanting more of a reset after Thanksgiving, this is my GO TO Nutrition Jump Start! I can help you with it too! Just message me!

xoxo-

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5 Ways to Teach Children Gratitude

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There’s nothing more powerful in changing our lives than having an attitude of gratitude. But in today’s society, it is SOOOO easy to overwhelmed with wants, efficiency, and discontent. I love November because of Thanksgiving, but if you are like me, I don’t want November to be the only month my kids show thankfulness. You too?

So here are 5 simple ways you can teach your children how to have a heart of thankfulness. I mean after all, those who are more thankful and content have an overall more satisfied and happier life (there’s tons of research out regarding how it effects so many areas of life like self-esteem, optimism, etc. Go check it out!)… And isn’t that what we want most for our children?

Daily Gratitude

This one is SO simple and something I try to practice myself. Each day as I tuck my ids away to bed (or even periodically throughout the day), I’ll ask them to name something they are thankful for. Some of the answers are TO DIE FOR cute. Seriously! I think my son is thankful for garbage trucks nearly every day 😉

Encourage Generosity

This past year we’ve been attempting to make major changes in our clutter around the house.  As a part of that, we’ve all given away a TON of stuff (Checkout my 5 Steps To Break Free From Clutter if you want to ditch clutter). We encouraged the kids to choose one thing to give away each day. I was actually amazed at how little resistance we experienced from them.  They were actually very excited to give to others.

Turn around the No

It’s sometimes so hard to go into a store with my kids because I feel like I get bombarded with the “I need this” or “will you buy me this” questions.  I hate using the word no and try to use it sparingly but geesh….shopping can be downright exhausting.  A huge focus for us this year is to eliminate ‘stuff’ so that we have more time and space to focus on our relationships.  So now, instead of just saying no I remind them of why we are saying no…. so that we have more time and money to spend on things we all enjoy like vacation, trips to the zoo, or Disneyland.  The no to the impulse buy becomes now something they are excited about and willingly put the item back on the shelf.  Kids crave relationship. And while they would love the latest and greatest toy, they more desire YOU.

Encourage them to Serve Others

I grew up serving people who were homeless or living on the streets and I cannot say enough about how it shaped my view of the world, gratitude, politics, and so much more.  Last year our family took coffee and breakfast to people who were homeless the day after Christmas.  It was an AMAZING experience for them. But in this stage of life, I just don’t feel it’s practical for us to do on a regular and ongoing basis.  So we’ve found other ways to serve.  We’ve connected with an amazing organization called Safe Families.  It’s given us the opportunity to bring children into our home, love them, and serve them.  My kids then have hands on real life, tangible exposure to serving those in need.  There are so many ways for families to serve together, whether it be as simple as picking up trash, serving food in a homeless shelter, giving gifts for Operation Christmas Child and others.

Please and Thank You’s

There is some thing so fundamental in manners that can have profound impacts on gratitude.  But rather than forcing your kids to say them just out of formality, make them meaningful (this is similar to why I never force my kids to say sorry).  When saying something is forced, it loses its value and meaning.  A gentle reminder such as “did you say thank you when Maya gave you a flower” reminds kids that even simple actions are something to be grateful for.  Just the same, encouraging them to write thank you notes reminds them of how many things in our lives we have to be thankful for.

 

Do you have any fun ways you teach gratefulness? I’m going to share some of my favorites in the next month and would love to highlight yours! Drop them below or email me renae@renaefieck.com

Instilling an Attitude of Gratefulness

One of the family values we have listed in our household is that of thankfulness and gratefulness. We have been blessed so tremendously and we strive to be thankful for it.  Sometimes I’m discouraged by reading thing when I see others complaining over simplicities when in comparison to much of the world, the lowliest and poorest of America cannot compare. So while we strive for this mentality throughout the year, it’s straight up and present in the month of November! This year one of the women in a mom’s group said her family creates a thankfulness tree, writing things on each leaf in which they are thankful for.  I couldn’t help but steal the idea.

We tried taping it all to our window but unfortunately, they just wouldn’t stick.  Thus I thought I’d glue to paper and it traveled around our house to find a spot that was visible and yet would discontinue falling apart. Therefore the lighting and the picture isn’t fabulous but it gives you the idea.  We each picked a color and we write one thing each day this month (minus a few days we forget to actually do it at dinner time).  I have been amazed by some of the things that have come from Kinsley in regards to her thankfulness. Such as, the first night her response was “Jesus.”  Gosh, how can I top that response! Shouldn’t we all be thankful for Him and in Him all other gratefulness derives.

This is definitely a tradition we will continue year after year. I almost considered saving the tree for memories and seeing how our thankfulness continues to abound but think maybe a picture in the scrapbook will do!  What Thanksgiving/November traditions has your family incorporated?tree (1 of 1)