Monday, September 19, 2011

A mainstay of our Family Council meetings: Who are we thankful to this week

A couple months ago I wrote about a new family tradition: Weekly Family Councils. Janine and I have been pretty success in holding them. (I think we’ve missed one, maybe two.) Our church meetings are currently in the afternoon so after breakfast we gather the children for a fifteen to thirty meeting family meeting. I have been creating the agendas. The pattern that has developed is we’ll go over our calendar for the next couple weeks and make sure that everyone in on board and that there are no scheduling conflicts.

Then I’ll bring up discussion topics. Sometimes Janine and I will be looking for advice or thoughts on a problem, like how to handle chores now that school had gotten into full swing. Most of these kinds of topics come and go.

One topic that had become a fixture on the agenda is “Who should we write thank-you notes to this week.” Because of many factors, like heavy advertising, it is easy in our society to think of the things we want and “really, really” need. One of the lessons Janine and I are trying to teach our children is to be grateful for the things we have.

This agenda item reminds us each week to stop for a moment and think about who made the last week a little nicer for us. Sometimes we’ll write a family thank-you note, for example we were invited to a party on Saturday, so as a family we signed a thank-you note. Other times we’ll remind each other that someone was especially nice to one of us, for example this last week one of Janine’s friends has been very helpful in driving around a foster care girl we have had this last week.

I think weekly family councils have many great benefits. One of them is our children are developing a habit or remembering to be thankful.

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