This year we tried something I have always wanted to do. We rang the bell for Salvation Army all together as a family. It was only for an hour (which happened to be during the Gator game, can you believe we missed it?) and the time just flew by. It was neat to explain to the kids what we were doing and what the Salvation Army does for people in our community, and teaching the importance to serve and give back to people who have less than we do.
They all did well - Jackson got pretty fussy at the end but he stayed pretty calm for the most part because I had him in the sling on my hip. Caleb was excited to ring the bell but he stayed in his chair most of the time. Lillian got grouchy early on because she wanted a cookie, but still smiled and said thank you to everyone. Ella was definitely the star of the show - after we took the picture together, she stood up the entire hour and didn't stop ringing her bell the whole time! I think that girl will be in show business one day!
After our hour was up, we took the kids inside Publix for a free cookie and then headed home to finish some Christmas decorating (that is, after I got a nice kid-free dinner at Chipotle with Uncle Austin - I adore my husband for letting me do stuff like that when I need some "me" time). I would love to make the bell ringing an annual Thanksgiving weekend tradition!