Thankful Tree

I mentioned the other day that J was gathering up Halloween decorations, and that’s partly because she was excited to start our Thankful Tree.  We got the idea from Family Fun, and it’s a simple, cheap craft that’s become an annual tradition.

Basically, you take a tree branch (ours has been re-used a couple of times & it’s gotten a little too small, so we need to scavenge for a new one–this one’s a little dwarfed by its leaves) and stick it in a pot full of stones or dried rice or beans (I covered the rice with leftover moss from our fairy gardens).  Then the kids–or grown-ups, too–write something that they are thankful for on a construction-paper leaf and hang it on the tree.  I just leave extra blank leaves nearby so that the girls can add items as they become inspired.

At the end of the Thanksgiving season, I put all of the leaves into an envelope labeled with the year, so it’s a nice little time capsule, showing how the girls’ writing  evolves and what was important to them at that point in time.  This year, M made a big fuss about her first leaf and then labeled it “TV”, and I swear that she did it just to irritate me.  Honestly, I fear adolescence with that child.  Occasionally I try to be optimistic and hope that she’ll be tired of scorn and rebellion by the time she’s a teen, but I know that I’m kidding myself.

Take one guess about J’s first leaf.

No, really:  I’m serious.  If you read regularly, take a guess.

Now, first I have to explain that J started to write for herself, but she became frustrated and asked me to take dictation.  I wrote her exact words.


I mentioned this to J’s kindergarten teacher, and the teacher knew the fish by name.


  1. Michelle

    I am totally stealing this idea.
    (Also: J’s first leaf made me giggle. Not a surprise, but definitely a little giggle)

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