Turn a Summer of Entitlement Into a Summer of Gratitude with This Simple Practice

It’s time to pull out the summer gratitude journal!

gratitude journal

We arrived at the event we were all so excited about. Lunch rolled around and we discovered the cost of our food was more than what I usually would like to pay. I didn’t say anything to the kids about it or my husband.

Well, I hand my son his very expensive burger and fries that I had to wait in line 30 minutes for at the only food truck that sold food my kids would eat.

I still had not even taken one bite of my BBQ sandwich.

He looked at me with a displeasing look. Then it begins the:
Complaining.
Whining.
Entitlement.

We recently came up with this Stop. Drop. and Roll system that’s really clever and has worked really well for our family when our kids get stuck in the obnoxious whining.

related link: A Simple phrase to Nip Whining and Complaining in the Bud

I became frustrated with his response. I didn’t even use our normal system. I went straight to the I’ve had enough. But he continued so then I gave him a look and he stopped (for a short bit).

Well, we continued perusing the different things to do at the event and my son once again starts with the complaining. So this time I just looked at him and said, “When we get home you are writing 50 things you’re grateful for and if you continue with the complaining the number of things you’ll be writing will also add up.”

The whining and complaining miraculously stopped!

How Entitlement Sneaks In!

For some reason when summer rolls around it turns our kids into entitled little brats and I don’t say that to be mean. Actually, some of it is partly our fault because they are going from one activity to the next, family trips, music lessons camp and what, not all summer long to keep them from being bored. None of these things are harmful in themselves. But somehow it sends the message to our children that summer is all about them and their happiness. God forbid our kids are bored.

I shared a little about how easy entitlement creeps in here.

In the busyness and self-centeredness of our lives, we sadly forget how much our lives have been blessed by and radically redirected by the generosity of God… Every morning, God’s generosity greets us in at least a dozen ways, but we barely recognize it as we frenetically prepare for our day. When we lay our exhausted heads down at the end of the day, we often fail to look back on the many gifts that dripped from God’s hands into our little lives.”~ paul tripp

Turn a Summer of Entitlement Into a Summer of Gratitude with This Simple Practice

The Summer of Gratitude Journal helps us “look back on the many gifts that dripped from God’s hands into our life.” It helps my forgetfulness and it reminds me that there are at least a dozen ways he has greeted us with generosity. We’ve been doing this gratitude journaling in the summer now for a few years and it’s been so awesome, to say the least.

A simple activity to get all of us in an attitude of gratitude! It turns our little family into seekers of beauty and generosity. But the beautiful thing is our hands and hearts are so full that it makes us want to also be givers of beauty and generosity to those around us.

So, maybe you’re asking yourself what’s an Awesome Summer Gratitude journal?  See for yourself!

thankful journal

How the Summer Gratitude Journal Works

Basically, everyone in the family has their our own Summer Gratitude Journal. We write down beautiful things we find, awe-inspiring things or just plain awesome stuff that cross our path in that day or moment.  This will help us get into a frame of mind to take the time to see the beauty around us.

  • Each day, we will seek out the beautiful and good things in our life.
  • We will choose to focus on the awesome beauty in a sunset or the star filled sky.
  • We can either take a picture and print it out onto our journal.  Or we can just jot down a simple reminder of what put us in awe or was awesome.
  • We can jot down 3 things or 8 things for the day, it’s up to us.  My preschooler draws in his journal and then we write what he wants us to say above his picture.

We do it every day sometimes it’s a dinner or the next morning and we share about the day before.

We share with each other, from our journal, at dinner (or whatever meal where we’ll all be present).

Get your free journal pages here: Awesome Summer Gratitude Journal

Here are some ideas to jot done when your kids draw a blank:

  • Something they’re thankful for from the day.
  • Something a family member or friend did for them.
  • Something they saw and are thankful about.
  • Something they did for someone else.
  • Something just plain and simply awesome!

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