Category Archives: Thanksgiving

Focusing on Thanksgiving

FYI… IT’S THE WEEK OF THANKSGIVING!!! Did this sneak up on anyone else?  Ok, it didn’t actually sneak up on me but it did get here a lot quicker than I thought it would.  I have been extra careful this year not to use the “C” word (Christmas) around my girls until after Thanksgiving.

Why?  Because commercially, except for grocery stores, its almost a forgotten holiday.  And Thanksgiving is such a good one to focus on!  So we’ve spent the past few weeks talking about Thanksgiving.  I’ve been reading them one book over and over again that talks about why we celebrate Thanksgiving.

I love this book because of how simple it is.  It gives illustrations of what Thanksgiving is not and then ends with what Thanksgiving is… a time to give thanks to God who gave us everything. The girls really seem to enjoy it.

Another book that I love is Balloons Over Broadway.

This book gives the history of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade as well of the science of making all those amazing balloons you see every year in the Parade. I have always been a sucker for the parade and look forward to my girls falling in love with it too.  Esther is most excited that after the parade comes a REALLY big meal.  She has a special place in her heart for food. 🙂

This week I plan to continue to keep the focus on Thanksgiving. To do this we are taking a break from our normal school curriculum and will instead be working on some Thanksgiving crafts and projects.

I searched Pinterest last week for some ideas.  I like projects that are easy, meaningful, and don’t require me going out and buying a lot of new supplies.  Here’s what I came up with.

Thanksgiving word and picture traceable



We have almost finished working our way through learning to write the alphabet and I thought this would make a fun review.  It’s like sneaking a little school in without them even realizing it.  Not that they would mind really. Noah and Esther go crazy for school.

thankful pumpkin


How cute is this?   This craft encourages the children to verbalize what they are thankful for.  Plus, from a mom’s standpoint it looks super easy!  Every once in a while we need one of those crafts that only takes five minutes to prepare.  

(no source found)

My girls are at that stage where they love tearing paper and then gluing it to a piece of paper.  They are also pretty huge fans of tracing their own hands. Something tell me this project will be a hit for them.Handprint-Footprint-Turkey-Kids-Crafts(source)

Paint!  Seriously when can you go wrong with paint and toddlers. Well, except that it’s normally a super stressful time for mom and requires a good bit of cleanup but the kid’s enjoy it.



Ok, I think I am most excited about this one.  The girls use as part of their school curriculum and have recently worked their way up to the color by number sheets.  Noah is pretty good at them.  I’m saving this little activity for the actual Thanksgiving day activities. It may help keep some little hands busy while they wait on Thanksgiving dinner.  Not that I would need to do that or anything.

So what are some of the ways your family focuses on Thanksgiving each year?  Do y’all have any special crafts that y’all like to do together?

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Thankful Thursdays: Count Your Blessings and Link-up

Source: via April on Pinterest



Count Your Blessings (by Johnson Oatman)

When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
*Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.
[*And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.]
Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by.
When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings—*money cannot buy [*wealth can never buy]
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.
So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.
*Alternate text.

As we sang this last Sunday in church I knew I just had to share it with you.  Take time to count your blessings today and to thank God for them.  He deserves all the praise, honor, and glory for them.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Psalm 107 (NIV)

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
his love endures forever.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving day.  ML is busy cooking us up a turkey and I am working on the sides and desserts.  We are having a small celebration at our house today with close friends but will miss spending time with our families.

After the friends and food are gone we will be getting our Christmas on.  Carols will be playing, decor going up, and hot chocolate will be served!  Watch out Noah.  Your parent’s may go a little crazy tonight.

Now it’s your turn.  Link up your post sharing what you are thankful for.  Not a blogger but still thankful?  No worries, leave a comment below sharing what you are thankful.  I look forward to hearing from everyone.  It is such a blessing each week!  I’ll be back next week with our final Thankful Thursday post and linkup.

Don’t forget to join Color Transformed Family every Thursday in November as we give thanks for all the blessings God has given us. Grab a button on the sidebar and spread the word.

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Davonne Parks, Great Peace Academy, Imparting Grace, New Life Steward

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Thankful Thursday’s: Freedom

Happy Thanksgiving!  For this final post in the Thankful Thursday’s series, I wanted to share how my life has dramatically changed since last Thanksgiving.

Ever since I was nine, I have suffered from migraines.  I’m talking about the kind that put you in bed and make it incredibly hard to think because the pain is so bad.  With the help of preventative drugs, I was able to reduce them to around 2-3 a week.  I also took up to nine “triptans” a month (medicine you take when you have a bad migraine) and muscle relaxers for my TMJ and neck pains related to the migraines.  You would expect that with this much medication, the migraines would have been fewer than that.  They weren’t though.  I didn’t really complain but just accepted it as part of my life.  I found comfort in the fact that I wouldn’t have this problem once in Heaven.

Last fall, when Michael Luke and I started to plan to expand our family, we also began to look at our options for migraine pain management.  I wouldn’t have been able to take any of the medication I was on while pregnant and needed to come off of everything before we even started trying.  This completely terrified me… I knew my migraines would only get worse, and I didn’t know how I would function.  My neurologist suggested I try a nerve block… it didn’t work.  We were left wondering what to do.

Meanwhile, we started noticing trends that might be triggering the migraines. One of them was food around the holidays.  Christmas of 2009 I basically had to skip out on because of a two day migraine.  I just traveled from house to house, found a bedroom and hoped the pain would stop.  The same thing happened last Thanksgiving.  Even causing me to miss work the following week.

After beginning to question the effect of food on my migraines, I started doing some research.  I found the book Heal Your Headache: The 1-2-3 Program for Taking Charge of Your Pain.  The reviews on Amazon were great, so I decided to order it and give the program a try.  Dr. Buchholtz does an incredible job of explaining why we have headaches and how we could be making the problem worse.

What does the program consist of?  First, you have to come off all your medicine… cold turkey.  This part made me nervous.  Even the reviews I read said this was the worst part.  And it was.  I had to give up everything I had ever found any relief in.  I remember having one of the worst migraines I had ever had after doing this; and to top it all off, I couldn’t even take any medicine to help ease the pain.

Thankfully, step 2 was simultaneous with step 1 and helped to decrease/eliminate the migraines.  Step 2 was to remove any foods that could be a trigger for migraines.  It was a long list of food… a list that contained many foods I loved and depended on for cooking, such as chocolate, onions, cheese, and citrus fruits.  Can you imagine giving up chocolate during the holidays?  Do you know how much willpower that takes for a chocolate lover like me?  I seriously doubted myself at first but really wanted to know if a life without migraines was possible.  So I decided to bite the bullet and give it a try.

The elimination of medication and trigger foods was a way to detox the body.  All possible triggers had to be eliminated for eight weeks.  I went twelve for good measure.  Within 2-3 weeks of being on the diet, my migraines were almost completely gone.  And if I had any pain, I was able to treat it with plain old Tylenol.  Tylenol had never worked for me before!

This new found life without pain was amazing!  I didn’t wake up every morning wondering if the day would be pain free or not.  After eight weeks of the diet, foods can be added back one at a time each week to find out if they are triggers.  My triggers are MSG, soy, pork, and nitrates/processed foods.  Since MSG is in so many foods (not just Chinese food, people),  we eat a more “whole foods” diet.  At first, it was a little difficult because I had to tweak the way I cooked, but now it feels natural.  Plus we are eating healthier.

The best part of the whole diet is that I didn’t even need step 3.  Step 3 was to add a preventive medication if there were still occasional migraine headaches.

This program allowed me to try and become pregnant without suffering from migraine pain.  The diet that I once dreaded I now find gives me freedom.  Freedom because I don’t have to worry about when my next migraine will be anymore.  How crazy is it that I don’t even need medications to prevent my migraines?  If you suffer from them and are looking for freedom, give this diet a try.

Note:  I’ll be back next week with more design projects!

Update:  Heal Your Headache: The 1-2-3 Program for Taking Charge of Your Pain   can be found to the right on the Products I Love Amazon Affiliate Link.

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