Cultivating a Thankful Heart {Knitty Bitties + The Lovely Words Giveaway}

Several years ago when my Little was getting to the age of real understanding of wants versus needs, I decided that I wanted to really start practicing ways to cultivate his heart to be a thankful heart. Now, practically speaking, this is not a one time a year “thing” nor is it as simple as doing A, B & C. To really cultivate his heart, I need to be … tilling, planting, watering, fertilizing, weeding, pruning … some of those things need to happen daily and some only a few times a year.


I’m just giving you a few ideas of what we have done around Thanksgiving to really focus our hearts on thankfulness before we jump into the Christmas preparations. Maybe one of these will inspire or spark an idea for you and your family.

Giving to others // Sponsor a Child::
On Thanksgiving day when my Little was 4, we explained that we were going to sponsor a child through Compassion International. We are greatly blessed and we talked about giving to others out of our abundance. As a family, we got on the website and found children with the same birth month/year as our Little. This has given him a good perspective on the child and has proved to be a great teaching opportunity for us as we talk about living conditions, wants/needs and general differences in our lives. We connect with our child by writing letters, sharing about our family and praying for this child.

If you’re interested in sponsoring a child, you can learn more and see some of the sweet faces that have been waiting more than 6 months for a sponsor by clicking here.

Sharing our thanks::
While it might seem cliché to jump on the #30daysofthanks bandwagon … or you might argue that we should be thankful ALL year, not just November … sharing your thanks with others really does force you to focus on all you have to be thankful for. I don’t think it matters what time of year that is … if it helps remind you/refresh you/restart you to do it everyday in November, do it! There is never a wrong time to share your thanks and gratitude.

As a family we’ve practiced sharing our thanks in the form of a thankful tags. Through out the month we take time to write down things we’re thankful for on a cute tag and then hang it from branches in out living room. I first got this idea from Jones Design Co. a couple of years ago. This year she’s offering a new set of printable tags for FREE and three great ideas to practice gratitude!


Memorizing Scripture::
I think that memorizing God’s words is a great way to cultivate a thankful heart. The bible talks about giving thanks over and over. Our heart attitude is our compass for life and I want to do my best to make sure that my Little’s {and mine} heart it rooted in His word and that it will guide him the rest of his days. This year, thanks to The Lovely Words, we’ll be memorizing 9 different verses on thanksgiving. We may not get them all done in November, but I think that will be just fine to keep working on as we head into December/Christmas.

As a thank you to my wonderful readers, I’ve collaborated with Melissa from The Lovely Words to giveaway this little bundle:


A list taker, perfect for writing down all that you’re thankful for {and maybe helping to plan that Thanksgiving meal too!} and a set of scripture memory cards, thankfulness edition.

Just leave a comment telling us how you are working to cultivate an attitude of thanksgiving and use the Rafflecopter widget to track your entry. Additional entries available as listed.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Linda T says:

    Trying to model ‘thankful in all things’!

  2. Janna says:

    Have the kids (and me) write thank-you letters to their teachers!

  3. Laura Witt says:

    Making a conscience effort every day to think of a specific way my life is incredibly blessed helps me to focus on thanks. And reading Jesus Calling every morning outs it into practice.

  4. Being thankful for all the joy my teen brings to our lives has clearly helped him to cultivate his spirit of gratitude.

  5. Erica says:

    My daughter and I play “the Thankful game.” We take turns telling each other things that we are thankful for as long as we possibly can. We have done it for over 20 minutes while driving/waiting in the car.

  6. Amanda Guthrie says:

    I absolutely love this. My 3-year-old is at the stage where she wants every single thing she sees on tv, so I will definitely be doing some of these things with her to show the difference between needs/wants and remind us all of how truly blessed we are.

  7. What a wonderful giveaway and blog post on gratitude! Thanks so very much for sharing. I am working on staying balanced this holiday season. When it gets wonderfully busy, it’s easy to get short with my kiddies. As wonderful as it is having your own business, the whole point and focus is our family. So being grateful and present in each day!

  8. Jen Smith says:

    I try to give to the less fortunate whenever I can whether its to orphans in africa or the homeless in my hometown, always remembering how much I have been given.

  9. lisa meola says:

    Hoping to get together with my family and celebrate being thankful that we’re together.

  10. Through prayer. As I see God throughout my day I am reminded of the blessings I have from him and I saw prayers of Thankfulness. I teach my Sunday School students to write prayers focusing on giving thanks for their multitude of blessings.

  11. I am trying to be less judgemental of people and more understanding of all circumstances. Having a more “go with the flow” attitude. thank you.

  12. Carrie M says:

    We practice thankfulness by praying at naps and bedtime with our children. Everyone thinks of something from the day that they are grateful for.

  13. Emily says:

    I try to cultivate an attitude of thanksgiving by
    Being there for my friends. It’s important that I’m always there for
    Someone when they’re down or sad. And I try to pray everyday for other people as well as myself. I know everyone needs help, some more than me, and I try to send good thought their way. My friends and family are the most important people in my life, so they need to be taken care of.

  14. Amy G says:

    Lots of prayer ang giving.

  15. One day at a time, through small and sometimes big ways – serving with a right heart, apologizing to my kids when I have a bad attitude and thanking them for forgiving me – over and over! – thankful journaling, reading psalms…

  16. I have been working on an attitude of Gratitude all year long. It really makes a difference, where once I wanted, now it is enough.

  17. when the kids were tiny and first learning to pray, we taught them to say thank you for something in their day. years later, it is still a daily reminder.

  18. Jessica says:

    My husband and I always try to point out the little things in like that we are lucky to have so our kids are more thankful for what they have! We give to the animal shalter in out town and
    We try to work the soup kitchen once a month at our church!
    Thanks for the chance at your giveaway, Jessica

  19. This fall we’ve been learning more scripture! It’s slow going, but seems to be working….

  20. We have a “thankful” tree.

  21. We are making a thankful tree.

  22. Margaret R says:

    I am teaching sewing. I am very thankful that God gave me the talent and the time and money to be able to do this.

  23. We talk to our kids about what it means to be thankful and how to do what we can to help others. This Christmas we are sponsoring a family through a local agency.

  24. sonia de vargas becker says:

    Obrigada pelos conselhos, vou me esforçar para segui-los.

  25. anita roth says:

    I try each morning before I even get out of bed to think of something that I’m thankful for.
    It is a great way to start the day!!!!!!!!

  26. Megan says:

    Fantastic ideas! I enjoy the #30daysofthanks as well as memorizing Scripture!

  27. Rebecca Kohn says:

    I love this and I love the opportunity to cultivate thankfulness. Our little family (our baby is just 18mo) tries to reflect each day on a good thing that happened (something we are thankful for), a not so good thing (not everything is perfect) and a good deed done for someone else. Our hope is that by starting this now, our son will start to see this act of thankfulness as a daily practice.

  28. Christie Doorenbos says:

    I love this. . . as the mom of three boys I am grasping at every calm and precious moment that I can to just be still and be thankful. My theme this holiday season, because every season is in need of a good theme. . . is to just be PRESENT, not perfect. With this, I am putting my phone down more, and doing more puzzles. I am checking facebook less, and reading more books to the littles. I am not looking at IG pics while my teenage hockey boy retells all of the events from his very first ever varsity try-out. I am praying over him and his buddies instead of watching tv. . .and you have NO idea how good this is for my heart. As the only girl in the house, with three boys, a boy husband, and a BOY dog. . . I jokingly tell them it’s really “all about me. .” but this season, it just isn’t. Nothing else matters. None of it. I’m just going to be present. Not perfect. I will love them as much as my crazy heart will allow. Blessings on your day.

  29. Kelly O. says:

    lately I have tried to list 3 things I’m thankful for with my kids after we do devotions…. and then praise the Lord for his gifts… most often we are thankful for dolls cars and crackers… it’s a work in progress!

  30. Jeifner says:

    I’ve been working on checking up with friends more regularly. Making sure others are ok often leads to more appreciation for the blessings in my life. After all, friends that we get to choose :)

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