National Adoption Month and the holiday weekend around Thanksgiving can be a great time to start an annual adoption tradition. No need to stress over planning something big or elaborate, but both adoption month and Thanksgiving are times for recognizing family and celebrate the different ways that they’ve impacted our lives.
Here are a couple of ideas:
- At Thanksgiving dinner, go around the table and share what you’re thankful for. As adoptive parents, be sure to include your child’s birth parents and remind your children that they have so much to be thankful for too.
- As an alternative to going around the table, you can also write out what you’re thankful for. Buy a cheap tablecloth and some wash-resistant pens, and each year, you’ll be able to write “your thankfuls” as well as look back on the ones from years past. Follow this link to learn more about this tablecloth idea.
- Take a picture each year in front of the same background, holding the same item (like a gift from your child’s birth mother) or wearing the same outfit. This little girl’s parents have a cute idea along this line by taking a picture of her in the same over-sized t-shirt every year.
- Play hooky for a day with your spouse and child(ren). You could use this time to take a family outing, have a special meal or treat or meet up with your child’s birth parents if you have an open relationship.
Researchers say that the fastest way to a life of happiness is to take on an attitude of gratitude. We’ve been trying to do that all week on the blog, and here are some ways to do that at home:
- Send letters to people in your life who have been touched by adoption to thank them for their example and support and to celebrate adoption in their lives. Write thank-you notes to people who have helped you through the adoption process or who have been with you on your infertility or adoption journey.
- Mentor a couple in the process of adopting – it can be really reassuring to hear from someone else who’s been there too. Consider adding yourself to our adoptive family reference list. Families on this list help to answer questions for prospective adoptive couples who want to learn more about American Adoptions and the domestic adoption process for families. Join this list by emailing us at AF.Coordinators@americanadoptions.com and letting us know you’re interested!
- Waiting families can get in on this too! Ask your friends and family to help you spread the adoption love too and have them write letters to your future child about their excitement about the adoption, welcoming a new baby into the family. You can tuck these letters into a scrapbook for your child so that he or she will always know how anticipated and beloved they are!
- Send an annual picture to your adoption professional or attorney. Our staff really enjoys hearing updates on your families and circulating your sweet photos to each other over email! We’re already looking forward to a wave of mail over the next month or two!
Whatever you choose to do to celebrate National Adoption Month, enjoy some family togetherness!