Hey, friends! How are you? Happy Monday after Thanksgiving...and welcome to the month-long countdown to Christmas. :) How did the holiday treat you? We hosted all the grandparents and my aunt, too, and we cheered on my oldest in her second Nutcracker performance. It was all good, and we are all good and tired from the food fest and extreme Christmas decorating.
The hubs and I have been hosting Thanksgiving for the last decade, and every year we send our guests a little homework in the mail. Three paper stars. With them they bring three paper stars filled with three (or sometimes more if they can write really small) things for which they are grateful. My dad and hubs work diligently to build our slightly lopsided artificial tree the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, and on the big day, everyone hangs their stars filled with names of important people, faith, health, and particular graces handwritten on each.
Some years the words are easy to predict... new babes and grandchildren enter the picture, anniversaries remind us of those we hold the most dear, new opportunities fill the shapes before us. Sometimes it's the surprises that get you...
The stars remain as our first decoration on the tree and our traditional ornaments get added to the branches around them.
In a black, leather bound binder I've kept all of the stars through the years, and I love looking through them and remembering the gifts of years past and seeing how many remain throughout the seasons.
The Christmas season is full-on upon us but maybe we can keep the spirit of Thanksgiving alive and well amidst the hustle and preparation of it all.
We'll be reading and re-reading our stars (and those of our loved ones) and trying our best to focus on the gifts we've been given as we work on the gifts we are to give.
Happy holidays, my lovely friends. May this one be particularly merry and bright.
PS. In case you want to add some stars to your own festive fun, here's our perfectly imperfect pattern.