Nov 18, 2008

Making Thanksgiving Special

As I mentioned in the previous post, I love making Thanksgiving a special gathering for my family. Any time we have together is precious, but especially so when everyone recognizes and is focused upon just how precious that time is.

I usually employ my printer to make formal invitations and mail them to each household and to family friends who may be joining us for dinner. My family deserves my very best effort, more than any other guests I'll ever host, and I love creating an atmosphere where memories can be made.

Here are some examples of past years' invitations.

This year, I didn't do invitations, but I still wanted to do something special for everyone. Every now and then I surprise myself and actually come up with a craft idea that turns out well (not my strong suit). In doing "something special" this year, I also solved an age-old problem: a way for everyone to keep up with their drinking glass! (I had a side agreement with my dishwasher to try to lighten the workload a little.)

I bought some glass beads and wire loops to make "beverage ID" markers. Then I went on a mission to find a charm that somehow represented each member of the family. Here's what I came up with:

Paw (my dad, the grandkids call him "Paw") - he's been teaching the Word in Sunday School for as long as I can remember, and his wisdom and knowledge have blessed us all.

Meegoo (my mom; Meegoo is what the grandkids call her) - she's the sweet and loving heart of our family, the one whose heart feels our joy, our sorrows, and everything in between.

Leslie (Studly Man) - a) he's lived all over Texas and/or b) he's the man I had to move all the way to Texas from Virginia to find. (I looked for a dog paw charm, but they were sold out.)

Me - I'm the family whale lover. My dream vacation is to go on a whale watching trip.

Joe (my brother-in-law) - he's the band director at a local Christian school and quite a talented saxophone, clarinet and flute player. He's also an excellent arranger and plays in a professional jazz quartet.

Megan (a.k.a. Me-Again, my sister) - she's the choir director at the same Christian school and is also the organist at their church. She's a private voice and piano instructor, and she sings like an angel. She directs the North Central Chapter of the Singing Women of Texas.

Rachel (my eldest niece) - she's our Texas Longhorn. She graduated in May with her bachelor's in biomedical engineering and is currently back at UT in graduate school.

Cammie (my youngest niece) - the child can text message with her eyes closed or while she's explaining the theory of relativity. (She's a music major, following in the footsteps of her talented parents, but there weren't any other music charms!)

Daniel (my nephew) - he's a junior in high school (yes, that same Christian school where his parents teach) and is a talented basketball player. His school colors are green and gold. BTW, he's just recently been thrust into the position of point guard, but he's really an excellent center.

Kei (Rachel's significant other) - he's a scary smart aerospace engineer whose family is from Hong Kong. (Rach, please don't hit me if I got any details wrong!)

Ben (our dear friend and best man in our wedding) - he has the biggest heart for missions I have ever seen. He's a loyal prison ministry dedicate and has recently founded another ministry to feed villagers in Africa and Romania in a most unique way. Check out his web site.

So there you have it. My homemade beverage-ID-charms-with-significance.

Now if I could just get those place cards done... Come back soon to see those.


Anonymous said...

Jenn, I love the idea!! Where did you get the charms and beads? I would love to do something like that for our New Mexico Christmas.
Ruby's Fairy Godmother

Anonymous said...


DidiLyn said...

Please come be my very own personal Martha"Jenn" Stewart.
I will pay you very well.
First let me discuss $$ with my own personal Donald "Rod" Trump.
Later, Tater.

Sheryl said...

wow! may i come to your house for thanksgiving. what a great idea. and i always love things that took thought about the individual.

enjoy your thanksgiving, jenn!