Gratitude should be year round

Practice Gratitude All Year
Simple ways to practice gratitude every day.

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I love the food, the decorations, and the pumpkins; I did a whole post on my love of all things pumpkin.  The weather in November is perfect sweater weather and a holiday centered around sharing a delicious meal is perfect. But most of all I love the message Thanksgiving sends about counting our blessings and reflecting on what we are thankful for in life. November is a month where gratitude is in style, but I believe gratitude is something that never goes out of style. Gratitude is something we should practice all year round.

Over the last two weeks, I really have enjoyed seeing people’s public declarations of gratitude on Facebook and Instagram. The 30 days of gratitude challenge is a great idea since it helps people get into the habit of thinking of all the ways they are grateful and building reflection into their day.

I have informally practiced gratitude for a long time and I definitely attribute it to my generally happy and positive disposition. I do not always have tangible proof of my practice, so that is something I want to work on and to become more consistent with a tangible process like a gratitude journal.  So in the spirit of gratitude, I wanted to share with you some of the ways I like to practice gratitude.

Simple ways to practice gratitude

I try to do as many of these things on this list, but my real goal is to make some kind of gratitude practice a part of each day.

1. Daily Gratitude Reflection: At some point during the day, think about a few things for which you are grateful. Maybe you could think about it while in the shower, during your commute to or from work, or do it while on a walk.  Make a point to think about 1-3 things each day. Start with the easy ones, such as I am grateful for my family, my health and my employment, etc., but try to come up with new things each day. Try daily gratitude reflection for a week, and see if you feel different? This is the practice I do most often since it only requires me to change the course of my thoughts for a moment, but it has a huge impact on me and how I am feeling.

2. Gratitude Journal: This is one I need to work on. You could get a notebook, any notebook or you could use post-its to jot down the items from your daily gratitude reflection. Another way to record your gratitude reflection, you could make a quick note on your calendar, it could be a paper calendar, or digital. I want to do this since I want to be able to see my gratitude progress.  I think it would be great to see what I was grateful for over the course of a week, a month, and hopefully a year.

3. Verbalize gratitude several times during the week: Make a point to tell someone you appreciate them and most important,  why you appreciate them. It can be anyone!! If you are shy, start with someone you know.

4. ‎Send a thank you card: I love sending and receiving happy mail. My new goal is to send one thank you note each month, this would be different from and in addition to any thank you notes in response to gifts. So take some time to write a nice thank you note to someone.  If you need some cards, check out the ones in my Etsy Shop.

5. ‎Set an example of gratitude and offer opportunities to practice. I want to raise grateful and kind children, so we talk about what we are thankful for, I say thank you to others in front of my kids, I encourage them to say thank you, and my oldest son sends thank you cards for gifts. Right now, he is still too little to fill out thank you cards by himself, but I read the cards back to him and he has to “sign” each one. There are also some great kids books on gratitude, check out my kids’ book Pinterest board.

 

 

Today, I am thankful for the tools to write and publish this blog.  I am also extremely grateful and humbled by the fact the people take time to read this blog. I know we all have busy lives, so thank you for taking time to read my musings. So take some time each day to think about your blessings and who and what you are grateful to have in your life.

 

I hope all of my readers have a wonderful holiday season with their family and friends!!


Cheers,

Amy

30 Fun Activities To Try This Fall

30 Activities to Enjoy this Fall
Need ideas for your Fall Bucket List, here are 30

This year fall begins on September 22nd , but I prefer to start my fall celebrating on Sept. 1st. If you read my last post, you know now that fall is by far is my favorite season and I am starting a new family tradition this year. Yes, it’s still August, but I am so excited to have a fun filled fall with Big and Little.  Keeping reading for my list of fall themed fun activities!

I have seen Fall Bucket Lists online boasting  50 to 100 activities, which is great, but that stresses me out a little bit.  So I am going to stick to 30 activities. There are 91 days between September 1st and December 1st (the day I get my Christmas decorations out), I think 30 activities seem reasonable and achievable for us.

Some of my activities will be better suited for a specific month, so I will break the list down that way, but you can do them in any order you like. You could also create an interactive bucket list. Get my Fall Family Fun cards and the list of 30 fall activities, write the activities on the cards and place in your bucket to pull out when you need a fun fall activity, voilà, interactive bucket list.

Fall Family Fun Bucket List
Write your activities on your cards, put in your container and get ready for fun starting on 9.1.17

For those us who need some accountability to actually do the items on the list ( I include myself in this group),  I thought it would be fun for us to do it together.

Here is how you take part in my Fall Family Fun Bucket List:

Follow me on my Facebook page or on Instagram,

I will draw a few cards each week on Sunday and post them to IG and Facebook. If it is a recipe or craft, I will share the wonderful links . Post your pictures or share your progress in the comment section of my Facebook page or Instagram.

30 Fall Activities
30 Fun Activities to try this fall

There are so many things that make me smile when I think of fall… crunching leaves as we walk, the smell of baked goods and pumpkins.  I adore baking apple and pumpkin breads, muffins, cakes and cookies. I love watching the leaves change from green to red, orange and gold hues. My favorite fall day is when the sun is shining, but it is cool and crisp; perfect for doing a fun fall activity. Here are the activities we will be completing this coming fall.

30 Ideas for the Fall Family Fun Bucket List

September Fun Activities

  • Go apple picking; I have never done this and living in the beautiful state of Washington, it seems a little sacrilegious.
  • Create a new fall decoration
  • Take a nature walk to collect leaves
  • Try a fall kids’ craft featuring leaves
  • Make a new dessert featuring apples
  • Try a savory recipe featuring apples
  • Make homemade applesauce
  • Drink apple cider
  • Make caramel apples
  • Make an apple pie
  • Paint kindness rocks and leave them around

October Fun Activities

  • Make a new Halloween or Harvest decoration
  • Make Halloween or Harvest cards to mail to friends and family
  • Make pumpkin bread
  • Visit a pumpkin patch and take pictures
  • Try a new dessert featuring pumpkin
  • Make Halloween treat bags for the neighbor kids
  • Make popcorn balls
  • Do a kids’ craft with pumpkins
  • Watch a favorite Halloween movie I love watching It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown with my kids. Ghostbusters and Hocus Pocus are my personal favorites.
  • Read Halloween themed books
  • Make chocolate chip pumpkin bars, this is one of my favorite desserts. Thank you, Martha!!!
  • Make roasted pumpkin seeds

November Fun Activities

  • Create a Gratitude Jar
  • Make a new Thanksgiving decoration
  • Try a new dessert recipe with cranberries
  • Have a family movie night
  • Have a pajama day
  • Test a new Thanksgiving side recipe
  • Try a savory recipe featuring pumpkin
30 Fall Bucket List Ideas
30 Fall Bucket List Ideas

Need more ideas check out my Fall Board

I think this is going to be really fun and I hope you join me!

Click here if you still need to get my Fall Family Fun cards and list of 30 activities. Check your promotions section of your e-mail, if this is your first e-mail from me.

If you liked the Fall Family Fun posts, sign up , so you don’t miss my Winter activities and bucket list cards!!!!


Cheers, Amy

Our New Fall Tradition: Fall Family Fun Bucket List

Make your own Fall Family Fun Bucket List
New Tradition: Fall Family Fun Bucket List: Make your own!

Creating traditions and making memories is one of the things I looked forward to most when I dreamed about becoming a parent. I had such fond memories of my childhood of the fun things we did every year. When thinking about traditions, I decided I would let my favorite season guide my new tradition. Fall, hands down, is my favorite season!!! (check out my fall themed mugs in my shop 😊)  I have tried to think of ways to share my love of fall with my boys, Big and Little. They are 3.5 and 18.5 months. I went to my go-to inspiration spot on the web, Pinterest. Scrolling through the fall themed pins, one pin jumped out at me and inspired me make my Fall Bucket List.

Fall Family Fun Bucket List

The Fall Bucket List on Pinterest that I found was literally a little bucket filled with different color Popsicle sticks. Each stick had a different activity written on it. I love this idea. It could make an amazing gift for a teacher or friend. It is so cute and looks like fun to make. I just have one problem, ok two, but they are so sweet and I love them to bits.

Since my kids are of the toddler and preschool age, doing this project is not in the cards for me at this moment. I have tried to do painting crafts and get Big involved, but it spirals into a mess and he is only interested in it for maybe 15 minutes and then would rather go outside. So I pinned the literal bucket list to my Fall Activities, Crafts and Recipes board on Pinterest, to save for a later day when the boys are a bit older.

Follow me on Pinterest to keep up with all the fun fall ideas I will be pinning and trying.

Looking at this bucket list and others I have seen on Pinterest, got my creative juices flowing, I could make my own “Bucket List”.  Writing down my favorite fall activities and having the boys select one is a fun way to share all the things I love about fall with Big and Little. I am really looking forward to starting my Fall Family Fun Bucket List tradition. I wanted to make my bucket list easy to create; hopefully most people already have these items at home or at work.

Fall Family Fun Bucket List
Use any container you have on hand and print my cute cards to make your own fall family fun bucket list.

Here is what you will need to make my Fall Family Fun Bucket List

Computer and printer with color ink
Printer paper and/or card stock
My cute Fall Family Fun PDF (sign up here to get your FREE printable) *If you already subscribe to my blog, your PDF is in your e-mail now! * There are 8 cards to a sheet, so print as many as you think you would like. I want 30 tags, so I printed 4 sheets.
-Scissors
-Glue and Tape: only needed if you are gluing printer paper to card stock and decorating your container
-Pen
-Some kind of container (I am using an empty Costco nut jar), but a cup, basket or bowl would work well too. If you want to decorate your container, using washi tape or scrapbook paper could also be cute, but if you don’t have time for that this season, use a cup or bowl or basket.

Fall Family Fun Bucket List Supplies
You probably already have many of the supplies needed to make my Fall Family Fun Bucket List.

How I made my Fall Family Fun cards and “bucket”

1. Sign-up to get my Fall Family Fun cards,  print and cut them out.  I glued mine to some shiny copper brown card stock to give the printer paper more stability.  Then I cut them out with a thin border. Cards are done, easy right? Now, if you print onto white card stock, you could skip the gluing step. Print and cut, you are done with your cards.
2. If you are using a container you want to decorate, then decorate however you please, or select your cup, bowl, or basket that you will be using to hold your cards.
3. Write one fun fall activity you would like to do on each of your cards and then add to your container. If you need activity ideas, stay tuned, that is my next blog post and I will share 30 fun fall ideas with you!!!!

Fall Family Fun Bucket List
Write your activities on your cards, put in your container and get ready for fun starting on September 1st

Now you are ready to start celebrating all the fun things fall has to offer. Starting September 1st, Big and Little each pull out a card and we will then complete the activities sometime that week. I will post the crafts and recipes we plan to make to my Facebook page and post our progress to my Instagram.

If you do not have time to make the cards this season, you can follow along and take part in my Fall Family Fun Bucket list activities.

Participate with me in my Fall Family Fun Bucket List activities

Follow me on my Facebook page  or on Instagram
Post your pictures and share your progress in the comment section of my Facebook page or share on Instagram using #discoveringwhimsyfallfun

Hope you join me in this new fall tradition!!!

Fall Interactive Bucket List
Choose your own fall adventure; make your own interactive bucket list

Cheers,
Amy