On grateful giving

Lately I’ve been seeing my friends listing things that they are thankful for on Twitter, Instagram, and FaceBook.  I’ve been thinking a lot about this and what I am truly thankful for.  The obvious things are my husband, kids, family, ect…,but to be honest I really don’t feel all that grateful on a daily basis.  Sometimes my thankful thoughts go something like this:

I’m thankful for my laptop (but it’s a few years old, and I could really use a shiny new one)

I’m thankful for my home (but I’d really like to move into something bigger and older)

I’m thankful for our family car (but it would be so much better to have two nice cars instead of one)

I’m thankful that we live so close to the kids’ school (but I’m getting tired of this neighborhood and would rather live somewhere else)

I’m thankful to be a work-from-home mom (but I could probably get more done without the kids around)

Even though I may not say these things out loud, it’s still incredibly embarrassing to know that I’ve allowed them to creep into my mind at all.  And what’s even scarier, is that I need to be doing a better job at teaching my kids to be grateful for what they have.  It is a learned thing, and doesn’t always come naturally.

Last year right before Christmas, the kids and I spontaneously decided to go around our neighborhood and ask people for canned food donations for a food drive at the school.  The kids were SO excited, but I remember being a little nervous to ask, and thought that people would say no.  I really wanted to go through with it though, to help teach the kids that they can make a difference even if they don’t have a lot of money.  After going to only SEVEN houses, we had collected 30 items for the food drive!  I was so proud of my kiddos for going out into the freezing weather and helping.

I definitely wanted to do it again this year, and we did last night! All 5 of us walked around the neighborhood pulling a trusty wagon, and knocked on doors and asked for contributions.  Even after the success of last year, I was still a little nervous!  But our neighbors were so so generous and we ended up with over 50 items for the food drive!

So proud of these kids.  I can’t wait to see the good things they will do in each coming year:)