Back when I was a kid, Thanksgiving was my most unfavorite of holidays. I mean….boring. Aside from getting time off school, it was a bunch of adults sitting around eating turkey, no presents, no costumes, no real fun of any kind. Yawn. Fast forward to adulthood and I gotta say…Thanksgiving has now become one of my very favorite days. It’s a time to gather together with family and friends, eat fabulous food and just be thankful for all the wonderful things in our lives without all the stress and pressure that sometimes accompanies Christmas. Dear Thanksgiving, I am sorry I maligned you for so long and to make up for it, here are the things I am happy about, or grateful for, when it comes to Thanksgiving:
1.Gratitude – At its core, Thanksgiving is a gratitude ritual. We gather together to reflect back on the year, count our blessings and give thanks for the good stuff in our lives. What a marvelous, life-affirming tradition.
2.Family – Thanksgiving is a pretty low-key, relaxed kinda deal that focuses on getting the family together and I really dig that. And when I say family, I am including close friends because in my mind…friends are the family you choose for yourself. (Looking forward to seeing mom, dad and the nephews!)
3.Giving – I really like that the energy around Thanksgiving is one of giving and sharing. People have potlucks, bring wine, share what they’re grateful for…it’s not overly commercialized or focused on buying/receiving. This is probably why most retail stores jump straight from Halloween to Christmas with their displays, because there’s not a lot of money to be made off giving and being thankful, but that’s what I love about it.
4.Good Eats – Okay, I admit I am a bit of a foodie, and I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the awesome food that accompanies Thanksgiving. I especially like how all the traditional family recipes make an appearance on this day, the ones that remind you of grandma or childhood. It’s comfort food at its highest level.
5.Traditions – Thanksgiving tends to bring out some great family traditions that generate warm, fuzzy feelings of love and nostalgia, and what’s great is that they are all so different. Whether your clan gathers to watch football, make mulled wine, play croquet, or watch all three Lord of the Rings movies… hee! (Nutters, I’m talking to you), it’s YOUR family and your traditions and you’re making happy memories that can be passed down to the next generation.
However your family chooses to celebrate, I wish you a most excellent Thanksgiving. I’d love to hear about some of the family traditions you are grateful for. :-)