Saying Grace

In our house, around our dinner table, we sometimes give thanks to our television friends. In fact, sometimes we are so grateful for these digitally enhanced pals that we honor them every single night for weeks at a time. The tradition started a year ago, when we were gearing up for Thanksgiving. A conversation about the holiday’s meaning soon led to a daily ritual around the table where each of us answer, “What are your thankful for today?”

The responses swing wildly from the profound to the mundane, but usually hover in the middle as a positive recap of the day’s highlights.

We give thanks to school carnivals, haircuts, new library books, strawberry toothpaste at the dentist, a dinner guest, a productive day, air conditioning, a playdate, a fun bike ride, a dog who likes to fetch. Every so often, usually on the surprise “Pancake Dinner Night," someone is thankful for the meal before us.

Repeats are allowed, as became the case with our television friends from The Magic School Bus. (Oh Ms. Frizzle, I believe it’s more than a crush!) Because of Ms. Frizzle and her students, we developed a new rule: if you are going to be thankful for The Magic School Bus for 40 days straight, then you must also be thankful for something else that is NOT a television show.

The kids love this nightly tradition and even during the most chaotic evenings are the ones reminding us to stop and pause before we eat. Still, we’ve learned that not every family meal starts off on the right foot and not every day feels like one worth celebrating. Which is why we came up with rule #2 and life lesson #168: You must share something, because every day there is room for grace.

“Ok, Mama…I’m thankful this day is almost over.” Fair enough. Now let’s eat.

*     *     *

Weekly updates to Sunday Grace, our family gratitude journal, are found here.