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    This season leading up to Thanksgiving is one of my favorites.  If there is anything I’d like to be, it is thankful, and so I love the idea of expressing our gratitude both in spoken and written word.

    thankful tags in silver

    I have created a set of cards to help encourage this attitude of thankfulness.

    thankful card place setting

    You could put one at each place setting at the the Thanksgiving table, have your family and friends fill them out and share with each other.  My sister does this each night leading up to Thanksgiving with her family and then saves the cards to read the following year.

    thankful card

    Another great way to use the cards is to turn them into tags

    thankful for eggnog lattes

    and hang them on a thankful tree.

    thankful tree 2011

    The boys and I tromped out into the woods, cut down a few branches, put them into a heavy urn and filled the bottom with stones to hold the branches in place.

    thankful tree in urn

    Every day, we each write one thing we are thankful for. And the rule is that nothing can be duplicated.  This is our first year doing a thankful tree and I’m looking forward to seeing what the boy’s come up with. I hope it is a great way to instill in them the importance of having a thankful heart.  I know it will be good practice for me and Ryan, too.

    thankful tree living room

    thankful for legos

    thankful for apple crisp

    thankful for me

    {at least we’ve instilled some self-esteem in this silly child}.

    If you would like to do a thankful tree in your home, or if you’d like to use these cards at your dinner table, please download the pdf below.


    There are ten subtle fall colors and each card is 2 x 3.5.

    To create the tags, I cut out the card, punched a hole, added hole reinforcement stickers, and cut the edges at an angle.


    I hope you find great ways to use these cards.



    Happy Thanksgiving!

    80 thoughts on “thankfulness”

    1. Pingback: Holiday Decorating Ideas - DesignNJ

    2. Wow. I’m glad I found this post before Thanksgiving. This is a great way to celebrate, and will also provide me with some FHE activities leading up to Thanksgiving. Now I just need to find some great new recipes to go with the new decor.

    3. Oh no! I pinned these and was just getting ready to print them out when I discovered the link no longer exists. Will you be posting these again this season?

    4. I have never been to a blog where I immediately fell in love, like I walked in the front door to my own home. Oh my, yours is a very special blog. I just finished reading your post about your little boy calling you “mom” and I could relate perfectly. And then on this post, I see your brown dishes. I have those same ones, Spode Delamere. Love, love. Wishing I had found you earlier last week for the Thankful Tree tags. I’ll be doing it next year for sure. I can’t wait see what else I discover here. Thanks for having me! – Carly

    5. We love your thankfulness cards and recently used them on our camping trip in a ‘Give Thanks’ craft. I would like to send you a picture of how we used them but I’m not sure how to attach it here. But, we loved the results so much that it is now hanging on our wall at home. Thank You!!

    6. Love, love love this idea. I think I might do this myself during the Holiday Season, filling a card out every day and hanging it on the tree. By Christmas Day I’ll have an entire month’s worth of gratitude!

    7. I just wanted to say “thank you” and let you know how much my family (three boys) and I have enjoyed this gratitude tree idea. It is wonderful to see just what kids are “thankful” for! Your printable tags are adorable :-)

    8. I just have to say a quick thank you for your Thankful Tree idea. We adopted a little 6 year old boy from Ethiopia a few months ago. When his class was assigned a project to work on at home {and bring back to school} showing photos, etc of Family Thanksgiving Traditions, I thought “oh NO! we don’t have any yet!”

      So, we crafted your tree and he attached photos I took while they made it. It was the perfect 1st tradition.

      Here’s my blog about it {of course I credited you for the idea}

      Thanks again, Emily.
      Teresa Anderson

    9. Thank you for sharing this project. My littlest one and I gathered our branches and set them up…rocks and all. We just printed the tags andwill be ready to fill out soon. :) We are grateful. Thank you

    10. I am thankful for you and your creativity … I’m not sure I could get through the day anymore without looking at your blog! So thankful I stumbled upon your work.

    11. I was wondering what weight of paper you use when you print these thankful notes…and where would I buy it. At and office suppy place? or someplace like Michaels?
      Love your Blog!!

      1. I’ve got our thankful tree ready for tomorrow and a beautiful banner that says GRATEFUL hanging across the bottom of the mirror above our mantel, and your chair silhouette print on said mantel {Oh, and a linen wreath}. There is a lot of Jones Design around our house and I love it. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

    12. Oh, you and I share a similar heart! Thank you for doing this in your home and for posting this on your site. Gratitude/thankfulness is especially important these days. To thank someone is to hold them responsible; and Who better to thank than our Heavenly Father Who gives us all things to richly enjoy! We have a Good News Club and last week we started a poster that is with a similar idea. And we learned a new song from Ps 92:1 “It is good to praise the Lord and make music to Your name, O Most High, to proclaim Your love in the morning and Your faithfulness at night”
      Keep up the good work Emily! I’m thanking God for you!

    13. Love the thankful tree! Had actually already done one with scrap pieces of paper but these tags are so cute! Maybe we’ll use them at the dinner table though… Do you mind telling me where you got those plates? I do love them. Thanks!

    14. I watch my neices,who are 3 years and 10 months, while their parents work . I was so inspired by your tree idea that Millie (the 3 year old) and I trekked outside to gather branches. For the past several days adding a thankful thought to our tree has been the first thing that we do when Momma drops the girls off. Momma and Daddy have been able to add their thankful thoughts to the tree as well and it is filling up quickly. It is a wonderful way to teach gratitude and it has been delightful to decide what we want to be grateful for each day. Thank you for sharing your wonderful idea!

    15. Thanks Emily! Your timing is kids and I needed this to help us get through a difficult time. We can’t wait to get our branches and get the tags on our thankful tree!

    16. Thank you for making me look like a really good mom who is organized & crafty. My girlfriends are in awe of me because of you but I don’t tell them I stole the “Thankful Tree” & tags from you. :) Appreciate the free download, I was going to have the kids cut out leaves and write it down, but this was so quick & pretty. Thanks for your talent. Have a good day.

    17. Thank you! You have been inspiring me for awhile now! I like how you moved the TV! Ha! Is it weird when strangers know how you have your house decorated? It looks great! Blessings, Tonia

    18. Love it! I just got them all printed, cut out and ready for our Family Home Evening activity tonight. We’ll do a new card each Monday night to add to it. I think I’ll string them up above the fireplace. Thanks!

    19. I went outside this afternoon and grabbed some branches to make a Thankful Tree for my family! Had the cards printed, cut and punched in no time! Thank you for beautiful print outs and a great idea! God bless!

    20. I am Thankful for you. Your thoughts and talents bring beauty to this world. We don’t celebrate Thankgiving here in Australia but thankfulness is something our family tries to embrace everyday. Thank you for this thoughtful and lovely gift :)

    21. gorgeous! you are on fire with these great creative ideas and beautifully designed cards.
      thanks for offering them free. i appreciate your work and generous heart!

    22. I just love these. I can’t wait to make me a little tree too!! Also, thank you for the JDC monthly. I am loving it. You are so creative, and thank you for sharing your talent. Your living room is beautiful!!

    23. I LOVE this and am absolutely going to use the idea immediately. Thank you for always sharing so generously. I blogged about your beautiful ideas {and heart} today. You inpsire me so often and I am THANKFUL for you.



    24. Thank you so much for sharing your talents with blogland!
      I love the sheet music place mat…is it really just sheet music or a place mat you purchased? Can’t wait to hear about moving the TV into the master!


      1. how observant! We have rearranged a few rooms and now our master bedroom is the media/game room with the big tv and our master bedroom is now in the old guest room. We still need to cover that niche in the fireplace …

    25. Thanks so much for these! My boys and I had our first Thankfulness Tree last year (after one fell in love with a large stick and couldn’t bear to leave it outside!). We used plain ol’ construction paper leaves in fall colors to write our blessings, so today I am grateful to find something much more fun! Thanks for the great tags. I found that after Thanksgiving I didn’t want to throw the leaves that listed our blessings away, so I bunched them together on a small string and hung the cluster on our Christmas tree. I think it’ll be fun to have lots of clumps of these blessings cards hanging on our tree in the future. :)

    26. Thank you Emily!
      My mom had us do a similar activity growing up. She had a decorated coffee tin with a slot in the top — we would put in notes with messages of things we were thankful for during the month of November, then would read them during Thanksgiving dinner. It is a memory I still cherish today, 25+ years later!
      What a beautiful way to display these messages and a wonderful tradition to share with your children, thank you for sharing!

    27. Psalm 100:4-5

      4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving
      and his courts with praise;
      give thanks to him and praise his name.
      5 For the LORD is good and his love endures forever;
      his faithfulness continues through all generations.

    28. thank you soooo much for this, Emily! Will do! Also, I am pinning your place setting – that would be the dream one for me! Is that your place setting? Do you know the name of that? I am a big collector of all brown/white plates!!!
      You are such a real, dear woman!

    29. thanks for these!! i think i will do a tree next year and use these (thanksgiving here in Canada has passed). they are too cute and such a great idea. thank you so much!!

    30. Thanks for much for sharing! I am working on getting my tree together today! Can’t wait to use these cards to teach my boys more about how to be thankful every day! I printed out the cards, however, they are very small…only a 1 x 2. Did I do something wrong when downloading or printing? Thanks again!

    31. Thank you for the tags! I am going to use them. What a great idea. Anyway, thank you for making them and giving them away, that was a sweet blessing! God bless you!

    32. Love this! I’m thankful for your generosity! BTW–how’s about a tutorial for that pretty fall wreath on your mantel? :)

    33. I’m thankful for your talent and that you are so generous sharing with all your fans!! =) Thank you so much for these. My daughter and I cut branches this past weekend just for this reason and I was going to make tags today…now I don’t have to! Have a great week and thank again!!!

    34. I bought a Thanksgiving calendar 5 years ago at Pottery Barn, and it is so cute to see what my kids come up with. I have just been using plain card stock these past 5 Thanksgivings, but these cards would coordinate perfectly. I wish there was somewhere in my house I could do a Thanksgiving tree, but for now, my Thanksgiving calendar works well. Thank you so much for inspiring a little more gratitude in the world.

    35. Thanks Emily! I am hosting Thanksgiving this year for 30 at my house, and can think of LOTS of ways I can use these beautiful cards you created. I love them, and they will go perfectly with the tablescape I am planning on putting together. I am thankful for YOU and all your inspiration and talent. Thanks for sharing with the rest of the world!

    36. I can’t believe I am just finding your lovely blog!! I have been browsing through the archives and I am now a subscriber. The thankful tree is such a great idea and I love your living room.

    37. Wonderful! I’d been trying to think of way to incorporate writing daily “thankful for” notes, but hadn’t gotten around to creating something. These are perfect!

    38. I am thankful for YOU! What a fabulous idea. Love the tree in the living area and your brown transferware. Beautiful!
      p.s. hope you got my email yesterday…..

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