Thanksgiving Study Days 7-10

It has been helpful this week to read and study a little about gratitude everyday, to keep myself focused on what Thanksgiving is really all about, and not get to caught up with turkeys and pies. I have much to be grateful for! Here are the highlights from the study plan for days 7-10.

“Gratitude requires awareness and effort, not only to feel it but to express it…As we pray and express gratitude to a loving but unseen Heavenly Father, we are also expressing our faith in Him. Gratitude is our sweet acknowledgment of the Lord’s hand in our lives; it is an expression of our faith” (Sister Bonnie D. Parkin).

​”Let a spirit of thanksgiving guide and bless your days and nights. Work at being grateful. You will find that it yields wonderful results” (source).

An Attitude of Gratitude by President Thomas S. Monson
1. We can lift ourselves and others when we cultivate within our hearts an attitude of gratitude.
2. Let us show gratitude for:
Our mothers
Our fathers
Our teachers
Our friends
Our country
Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
3. By emulating the Lord’s example and obeying His word, we give to Him the gift of gratitude.

A FHE Lesson on Gratitude

My five-year-old son taught our FHE lesson tonight. With it being Thanksgiving this week, of course he chose the theme of gratitude. First we watched this video. Then he presented our scripture for the week:

D&C 98:1 “…rejoice evermore, and in everything give thanks;”

For our activity we each filled up a sheet of paper with things that we are grateful for. We used this activity to give us ideas as needed.  I think my 8-year-old enjoyed this activity the most–she filled her page and didn’t leave any white space at all!

Thanksgiving Study Day 5 & 6

Today I reviewed “Grateful in Any Circumstance” by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, as part of the 2 Weeks of Thanksgiving Study plan. Here are the quotes that especially stood out to me:​

Those who set aside the bottle of bitterness and lift instead the goblet of gratitude can find a purifying drink of healing, peace, and understanding.

I’m suggesting that instead of being thankful farthings, we focus on being thankful in our circumstances—whatever they may be.

We can choose to be grateful, no matter what.

We sometimes think that being grateful is what we do after our problems are solved, but how terribly shortsighted that is. How much of life do we miss by waiting to see the rainbow before thanking God that there is rain?

Gratitude is a catalyst to all Christlike attributes! A thankful heart is the parent of all virtues.

I also read “O Remember, Remember” by President Henry B. Eyring, and wanted to remember the following thoughts:

Have I seen the hand of God reaching out to touch us or our children or our family today?

My point is to urge you to find ways to recognize and remember God’s kindness. It will build our testimonies.

Thanksgiving Study Day 3 & 4

Here are some of my favorite scriptures about thanksgiving. Get the full reading assignment here.

“In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18).

“…rejoice evermore, and in everything give thanks;” (D&C 98:1).

“…O how you ought to thank your heavenly King!” (Mosaic 2:19).

“ in thanksgiving daily, for the many mercies and blessings which he doth bestow upon you” (Alma 34:38).

“Thou shalt thank the Lord thy God in all things” (D&C 59:7).

“And he who receiveth all things with thankfulness shall be made glorious; and the things of this earth shall be added unto him, even an hundred fold, yea, more” (D&C 78:19).

This short video clip from Elder Nelson about recognizing blessings from Heavenly Father is really great.

Thanksgiving Study Day 2

We+always+have+something+to+be+grateful+for-+I'm+grateful+for+this+scripture+study+program+about+thanskgivingToday I reviewed “The Divine Gift of Gratitude” by President Thomas S. Monson, as part of the 2 Weeks of Thanksgiving Study plan. Here are the quotes that especially stood out to me:

​My brothers and sisters, do we remember to give thanks for the blessings we receive? Sincerely giving thanks not only helps us recognize our blessings, but it also unlocks the doors of heaven and helps us feel God’s love.

Gratitude is a divine principle.

A prayerful life is the key to possessing gratitude.

A grateful heart, then, comes through expressing gratitude to our Heavenly Father for His blessings and to those around us for all that they bring into our lives. This requires conscious effort—at least until we have truly learned and cultivated an attitude of gratitude. Often we feel grateful and intend to express our thanks but forget to do so or just don’t get around to it. Someone has said that “feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it”.

My brothers and sisters, to express gratitude is gracious and honorable, to enact gratitude is generous and noble, but to live with gratitude ever in our hearts is to touch heaven.


A Thanksgiving Scripture Study Program

Today I came across Two Weeks of Thanksgiving Scripture Study at Chicken Scratch N Sniff. I browsed through a few of the reading outlines and I really like the content. Each day’s study session includes a song, scriptures or General Conference talks to read, a link to a short movie to watch, discussion questions, and children’s activity ideas. I think this program is just what I need right now to help inspire an attitude of gratitude in my life.Gratitude+is+the+noblest+of+virtues-+Love+this+quote!

I am planning to do the reading assignments personally on my own, and then share the highlights and video clips with my family in the evening. I am a few days behind, but should be able to catch up and finish the readings by the end of November.

The author has the whole program available for purchase here, or you can just go back each day to find the day’s assignment here (which is what I plan to do). Would you like to join me?

Today I read about The Ten Lepers, and then one of my favorite talks by President Monson, Finding Joy in the Journey. One of my favorite quotes that I have hanging in a prominent place in my home is “what is most important almost always involves the people around us”.  I also thought these words were profound: “If ingratitude be numbered among the serious sins, then gratitude takes its place among the noblest of virtues.”


Thanksgiving Books for November

I’m taking my Thanksgiving books back to the library today. But before I do, I wanted to make note of the titles, since this year we added a few good reads to our November/Thanksgiving list.

Thanksgiving at the Tappletons’ by Eileen Spinelli

The Thankful Book by Todd Parr

‘Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving by Dav Pilkey

Mouse’s First Fall by Lauren Thompson

Autumn Walk by Ann Burg

Thanksgiving on Plymouth Plantation by Diane Stanley

Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf by Lois Ehlert

Pilgrim Cat by Carol Peacock

You can check out last year’s favorites here.

Now it’s time to get out our Christmas reading list!


P is for Pilgrim (and books to read in November)

I was excited to plan and host the Sweet Bee’s weekly preschool group. Last week the theme was turkeys and thankfulness, so today I focused more on the pilgrim side of things. Most of our activities came from this fun tot pack graciously provided by Our Little Monkeys.

I printed and laminated these cards to make a matching game.

Each child put together a puzzle.

The Thanksgiving Tot Pack is full of fun worksheets that take only a minute to do. To save paper, I printed one of each worksheet, and then stuck the worksheet inside a sheet protector. The children then use a dry erase marker to complete the worksheet. Erase the marker with a tissue paper, and then the worksheet can be used over and over again!

We made feather headresses.Look closely at the snack–we had cornucopia’s and apples! The cornucopia’s are Bugle chips, but they do the trick.

A little coloring page to take home.

And because I’ll want to remember this next year, here are some of the books we are reading this month.

The Story of Thanksgiving by Nancy J. Skarmeas

In November by Cynthia Rylant

Arthur’s Thanksgiving by Marc Brown

If you sailed on the Mayflower in 1620 by Ann McGovern

The Very First Thanksgiving Day by Rhonda Gowler Greene

This First Thanksgiving Day: A Counting Story by Laura Krauss Melmed

Thanksgiving on Thursday and Pilgrims: A nonfiction guide by Mary Pope Osborne


Thanksgiving: Turkeys and other thoughts

Allow me to introduce….Tom the Turkey (nicknamed by the Ant Bug).

Isn’t he cute? I found the no sew tutorial for this adorable bird at Gwenny Penny. Her directions are very clear, and she provides a template for body parts (that red snood can be kinda tricky, you know). The body of her bird is made out of burlap, but I used felt for mine since I have a plethora of felt leftover from last years Christmas projects.

So…hurray for a Thanksgiving decoration! I am  a little lacking in the “Thanksgiving decor” department right now, but I’m sure my girls will have me well supplied in turkey art before the end of the month.

I’ve got a few other Thanksgiving projects on the brain right now. I definitely want to make time for a few handprint turkeys (like this one or this one or this one). I do have to give  a shout out to the Ant Bug who made her first handprint turkey of the season on  November 2nd.

I get to host a Thanksgiving themed preschool next week, so I’ll probably nab some activities from this preschool packet at 1plus1plus1equals1.

Last year we had great fun playing Don’t Eat Tom, a variation of Don’t Eat Pete provided by Prepared Not Scared.The girls were pretty excited to see the game board again this year, and we’ve already played a round.

I haven’t planned the rest of the menu yet, but at least I know what dessert will be on Thanksgiving: Layered Pumpkin Pie Toffee Cheesecake, courtesy of Our Best Bites, of course! A cheesecake and pumpkin combo that is making my mouth water…maybe I should make a test version this weekend…

Are you on Pinterest yet? I’ve been finding lots of fun things there. You can take a look at anything that has intrigued me (Thanksgiving themed or otherwise!) by clicking here or on the link on the right and taking a look at my boards.

What plans do you have for Thanksgiving?


My Thanksgiving links

Ant Bug “What kind of key doesn’t open any doors?”

Me “What?”

Ant Bug “A Turkey.”

Ha ha ha (thanks to the morning news at the Ant Bug’s school today).

Thanksgiving has really crept up on me. I have to admit that I dropped the ball on this one and neglected to check out any Thanksgiving books from the library. Yikes, shame on me.  And other than our Family Home Evening lessons on Gratitude we haven’t done any Thanksgiving related activities. Luckily, I still have a few days to get in some turkey time.  Here are my favorite Thanksgiving links and ideas for 2010:

Pinecone Turkeys from A Pumpkin and a Princess

Thanksgiving Literacy Fun, here and here at Pre-K Pages (thanks to The Activity Mom for the link)

Lots of Thanksgiving game ideas at Prepared NOT Scared

Tot School Turkeys at Little Page Turners

Favorite Thanksgiving Crafts at No Time for Flashcards

What are you thankful for? picture and frame at No Time for Flashcards

This is the song I will be teaching to six little 3-year-olds at our Thanksgiving party on Tuesday. (Thanks to the Ant Bug for teaching it to me)

Sing to the tune of “Are You Sleeping?”

It’s November.

Let’s give thanks.

Family at the table.

Thanksgiving is great.

(and add a gobble, gobble for fun)

Sunday evening I had a craving for something pumpkin-ish and sweet. My willing husband obliged me by making Pumpkin Bars. Delicious, and I wanted to eat the whole pan (pumpkin is healthy-right?!). Ours turned out more like cake instead of bars, so we ate it with a fork.  I had to share the recipe, because they are really yummy!

Pumpkin Bars (from Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book)

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 tsp. baking powder

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. ground cloves

4 beaten eggs

1 16-ounce can pumpkin

1 cup cooking oil

*Cream Cheese Frosting

In  a large mixing bowl stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and cloves. Stir in the eggs, pumpkin, and oil till combined. Spread batter in an ungreased 15x10x1-inch baking pan.

Bakin in a 350 degree oven 25-30 minutes or till a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 2 hours on a wire rack. Spread with Cream cheese Frosting; cut into bars. Makes 48 bars.

*Cream Cheese Frosting

Beat together 3-ounces cream cheese, softened; 1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened; and 1 tsp vanilla till light and fluffy. Gradually add 1 cup sifted powdered sugar, beating well. Gradually beat in 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 cups additional powdered sugar to reach spreading consistency.