Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Our Annual Family Back to School Dinner 2019.

This past weekend we held our annual family 

Each year at this annual dinner we present our family with a new MOTTO//THEME for the new school year.

We do this in hopes that our kids can always remember it...thru the good times AND the bad while at school and dealing with their day to day activities. 

We hope that these themes each year help them to remember what's MOST important in life.

The theme we chose for our 2019-20 school year is

We chose a quote AND a scripture this year to go along with it.

I really wanted to get the message across to my kids this year that it's ok to have a bad day {as much as that stinks!} but it's important to SEEK FOR THE JOY through it all. 

Look for the good.

Be grateful.

Count your blessings.

There is SOOOO much to be happy about in this world!

I studied President Nelson's talk
and shared lots of good nuggets from it with the kids.

"When the focus of our lives is on Jesus Christ and His gospel, we can feel joy regardless of what is happening—or not happening—in our lives."

"Life is filled with detours and dead ends, trials and challenges of every kind. Each of us has likely had times when distress, anguish, and despair almost consumed us. Yet we are here to have joy?
Yes! The answer is a resounding yes!"

We talked about what the word JOY meant to us along with the things that bring us each joy.

I chose to go with a CHRISTMAS theme this year.
Yup, Christmas in July!

I asked the kids WHY we sang the song "JOY to the World" at Christmas time?  WHY do we all seem to have SO MUCH JOY during the Christmas season?

Well, besides the gifts and parties and all of that jazz....we have JOY at Christmas time because we are celebrating the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ!! And we know that he LIVES!!!

So shouldn't that give us JOY....all...year...long?!
NOT just at Christmas time?

"Joy comes from and because of Him. He is the source of all joy. We feel it at Christmastime when we sing, “Joy to the world, the Lord is come.” And we can feel it all year round... ..Jesus Christ is joy!"

We ate a traditional Christmas dinner:
Turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, rolls, veggies and Christmas punch!

As the kids were dishing up, I even played Christmas music!
{My kids thought that was super funny.}

At each place setting I had made up Christmas ornaments that also served as their name cards.  

On one side, it has the words "Have Joy" and on the other side is their name and the year.

I told the kids that they needed to find a spot in their bedrooms to hang this ornament....

..and then at Christmas time, they'd be able to hang it on their Christmas tree!

I'm all about the daily reminders.
When you SEE things...you remember!

I also made up some JOY journals.
We each wrote 3 things that brought us JOY that day.

I told the kids that they were to write in these journals at least 2-3 times a week, hopefully more.  All they needed to write was the date + the 3 things that brought them JOY that day.

I feel like this will be SO fun to look back at at the end of the year.

And for dessert!  
We had.......

Almond JOY cake!
This recipe was HEAVENLY and I'll be sharing it with you tomorrow!!!

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To recreate this dinner for your own family...I'm offering our QUOTE and SCRIPTURE as a FREE printable!

Joy Quote HERE
Joy Scripture HERE

I've also stocked my Etsy shop with my 
Christmas ornaments AND Joy Journals!

Ornaments HERE
Journals HERE

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Advice: If you have access to your Christmas stuff to help you decorate, great!

If not, don't fret.  
All of my Christmas loot is in the very back of my garage and it's a sweltering 110 degrees here and I was not about to dig through everything in the heat to find it.

So....what I did....was hit up Goodwill (yes, they have their Christmas stuff out already!) as well as Hobby Lobby.

I bought buffalo check scrapbook paper and used those as the placemats.

Get creative!
Your kids will LOVE IT!

Please let me know if you have any questions at all!


  1. This is so awesome! Thank you for sharing. :)

  2. You have put together some amazing Back to School Dinners, but one-WOW!!!!