This Thanksgiving, start a new tradition: the gratitude tablecloth.
Set your table with a plain white tablecloth. Give everyone a Sharpie or other permanent marker. Have all guests write something they are thankful for this year. Do not forget to include the little ones—they will have the cutest comments. Of course, you will need to write it out for them, but, depending on their age, they can write their name or draw a picture. Or you can trace their handprint. Make sure that everyone signs their name and the year.
After the holiday, wash and put the tablecloth away till next year. As the years go by, you will all enjoy reading past years’ comments. And you will cherish the comments from those who have since passed away.
A nice white linen tablecloth paired with a set of markers also makes for a nice wedding gift!
Some people use butcher paper and provide crayons, colored pencils, and markers instead. This method might not stand up to year-to-year reuse, but it is another option.
If you do not want to use the tablecloth as your yearly gratitude vessel, you can also do the same thing by using 3” x 5” index cards. Each year you can review the past years and continue to add to your Thanksgiving tradition as guests change over the years.