Do NOT Follow this Link

Unless you want to laugh hysterically {and cause your mascara to run and burn your left eyeball for an hour. It could happen} DO NOT follow the following link.

I ran across this post and decided it was much funnier than anything I could come up with:

This seriously made my ugly laugh come out, but please don’t take it too seriously: Thanksgiving Activities
(I’m currently traveling 10 hours with 3 children and all humor evades me).
There’s still time to enter my current Mom Store Giveaway!

Thoughts on Thanksgiving

I can’t think of another attribute I’d like to develop in my children more than thankfulness. 
Nothing makes me heart smile like an unprompted ‘thank you’ or an uninhibited burst of gratitude.
I believe thankfulness is the mark of a great person. A grateful heart does not complain or compare. A grateful heart does not grumble or gripe. A grateful heart is a beautiful thing.
And it is rare.
I want to teach my kids to be thankful. I want them to see the good in their lives as blessings. I want their perspective to mirror their grateful hearts.
I want them to see gratitude in me. 
Here are five thankful actions I’m trying to put into practice:
  • Serve It-In our every day lives, my hubby and I try to make service a normal part of our routine. We ask our kids to help each other out as a way of serving one another. We have also recently implemented acts of service towards others (One Day to Give). There is a new excitement in our home about serving others. My kids have innovative ideas and together, we are working on servitude. 
  • Say It-I think one of the best ways we can show gratitude is with our words. Saying thank you at restaurants, to teachers, clergy, neighbors and friends is crucial. Our kids are taking their cues from us. And sometimes the people in our own homes have the most un-thankless jobs. I’m aiming to thank my hubby every time he takes out the trash or lends an extra hand around the house. Kids need to be verbally thanked too.
  • Sacrifice It-In our society, we don’t hear much about sacrifice. It’s not popular to give something up. But it’s still a valuable lesson to teach our children. I think true gratitude is born in sacrifice. Seeing others needs as greater than our own is what thankfulness is all about.
  • Show It-Sometimes the best way to show gratitude is through tangible means: a hand-written note, a gift from the heart or a thank you note for a birthday gift. These simple acts sometimes get lost in our high tech world.
  • Search for it-Life isn’t always easy. And during difficult times, it’s easy to focus on the negative. It’s during these moments, we have to look for the silver-lining in life’s trials. Perspective often changes our attitude. I try to remind my kids that they are blessed.
Food for the Soul:
Philippians 4:6  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

For more great tips, visit Works for Me Wednesday.

Happy Tuesday Giveaway!

*UPDATED* Congrats to A Country Girl’s Ramblings!  Don’t forget 4 Princess Bows is offering a 20% discount with this code: THAT family

There are so many talented moms in the world.

And by talent I’m not talking about the Mom I met yesterday who had already completely potty trained her 19 month old daughter.

Because that’s just not normal.  

{PLEAASSSEE!! Tell me it’s not normal because my 23 month old child uses her potty chair to hold her books}.

{And if you are a Master Potty Trainer and feel so inclined to tell me, please only do so if you can also send me a manual accompanied by a DVD and a part time person}.

Okay.  Back to talent.

And another terrific Mom store. Because the Mom who owns 4 Princess Bows is just that, talented.  All of the proceeds from this terrific shop go towards her upcoming Mission’s Trip. So, not only are you getting something adorable, the money is going to a great cause.

4 Princess Bows offers hand-sewn precious hair accessories and this mom’s motto: “All of my bows must pass the cute factor…in other words, if my girls won’t wear it, I don’t sell it!”

And I believe her.  Just look at this Christmas tree-shaped bow:

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And not only is her store stuffed full of cute hair bows and headbands, she also makes tutus, baby slings and this adorable jewelry:

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I love hosting giveaways this time of year.  I think we’re all feeling the pinch of the economy and with Christmas around the corner, it’s time to stretch every dollar. I entered a big giveaway the other day and won!  I’ve hidden the present away to give to my hubby (we have birthdays, an anniversary and Christmas, ohmy, all in December, so every little bit helps)!
Go visit this fun store and tell me what you’d choose with the $25 gift certificate she’s giving away!  $25 will go a long way in adorable hair bows and cute bracelets! Also, she’s offering a special 20% off coupon for readers (coupon code:  THAT family, valid until 2/09). Giveaway will end after Thanksgiving.

A Gift that Tastes Like Chicken

I’ve told y’all all about my good man.

He’s not perfect. And we’ve had our fair share of Potato Soup fights. 
(Our first fight ever was over potato soup. He liked my recipe so much, he kept going back to refill his bowl. I whined about not having any left from the double batch for lunch the next day, so he dumped the whole bowl in the trash. The fight ensued…)
(Yes, I won that fight!)
But fourteen years later, we are still best friends and I deeply respect him.
During the week, he spends a lot of time in his car driving to doctor’s offices. He’s a Pharmaceutical Rep and as a part of his job he provides lunch for the clinics.  
One area of town, about 20 minutes from our house, is a lower-income area. There are homeless people under every overpass.
One day, my hubby rolled down his window and offered his own lunch to a homeless man.
He did it again the next day.
And again the next week. 
He prayed with one desperate lady and encouraged a sad man.
And now on a regular basis, he pauses during his busy day, to make someone else’s. I was so proud.  I told my kids about it.
Do you know what they said?
“Take us, Dad. We want to feed them too.”
And so we did. On Saturday.  It was our One Day to Give for November.
We filled up two sacks with Chick Fil A chicken biscuits and we prayed. (And yes, I did get a sweet tea, just in case you were wondering.)
As one person after another came to our car window, I watched my children’s faces. 

They looked closely. They listened intently. And they understood why their Dad feeds the homeless.
One man in particular touched us deeply. My hubby asked if he was hungry. He smiled and said, ‘yes, this is the first food I’ve had in two days.” His joy was evident. And so was his relief. (My hubby handed him my large cup of sweet tea too.  Now that’s sacrifice! Do you think a cup of cold sweet tea given in Jesus’ name counts the same?)
On our way home, we talked with our kids. I knew this would be a day they would remember. “Do you have any questions?” I asked. 
“Yes,” my son said. “If that one man is homeless, how did he get gold teeth?”
I explained that most people don’t start off homeless and we speculated some about his life. I said, “and for some, gold teeth are a fashion statement.”
My almost 9 year old fashionable daughter said, “Who would want gold teeth?”
My son raised his hand and said, “Me!”
During this wonderful week of Thanksgiving, take a moment to give. You’ll be glad you did.

THAT Family Tree Society-Issue 19

Grab the button, email me the answers, join the club!

Picture of the Week:

Week in Review: My toddler has discovered the Christmas catalog. She enthusiastically kisses the items she likes. Good thing Santa doesn’t mind slobber. And please don’t notice her shirtless body in the kitchen. We try to hide our white trash ways. We really do.

Introduction into The Society: I’d like you all to make welcome Carolina Mama to the family. Y’all be nice now and go visit her great blog! She’s a Southern girl!

1.    Tell us a little about your blog (name/reason why you blog):  

Being a Mama encompasses so much of who I am.  Wife. Mama. Family.  That’s me.  Carolina Mama is my everyday, whether it’s playing ball in the park with my boys, on a date with Mountain Man, or discovering a new product.  Really it’s just our day in the life.  Blogging is a continuation of a lifetime of words – writing.  Mommyblogging is perfectly available and convenient to this Mama.  

2.    How long have you blogging?

My blogging started the Summer of 2006.  I sort of entered kicking and screaming because I was more comfortable with being a Columnist and traditional media rather than the blogging medium.  I’ve blogged my family, causes, athletic events, paid blogging, of course, everyday fun  – I’ve fallen in love with it.  Through it all I have had the blessing of discovering a wonderful community.  

3.    How would you define THAT family?

Maybe I am THAT girl or THAT mama therefore THAT family because I have always been pretty comfortable being myself – in the sense, I do not simply follow and do what others do.  To me it’s a blessing to be who I am.  I have had friends say it takes real courage.  I didn’t realize many people struggle with this.  So I feel very blessed.  Of course, there are times when being a wall flower would be handy.  ;)

4.    When did you discover you were a part of THAT family?  

Clearly, for us, becoming parents to Twins was our epiphany.  We were in a smaller town than we are in now and we were the talk of the town.  I once wrote about it that it was like being in a glass box.  Everyone saw your every move.  Small town girl that I am, this is endearing and yet THAT family gets noticed all the more.  

5.    Where can we find your blog?