It’s almost time for turkey.
We are officially rolling into the holiday season, and while it has been beginning to look a lot like Christmas since September, let’s give Thanksgiving the respect it deserves.
Hit pause instead of fast-forward, lift your eyes from the small screen that now dominates your daily life and enjoy the day.
We all have our favorite activities around the holiday. whether it’s trying out a new recipe or one that’s a family tradition with the Macy’s Thanskgiving Day Parade on in the background. Maybe it’s getting out for some pre-feast exercise or prepping your Black Friday strategy list.
We look forward to donning those stretchy pants, digging into a once-a-year mega meal and taking a deep breath on a day to be thankful.
Really, that’s what it’s all about. From origins in the 1600s on this continent, thanksgivings were occasions to do just that: give thanks. Back in those days, they were giving thanks for some of the most basic of things.
In its modern-day iteration, we take the feasting part of the day to excess. And while many of us are lucky to celebrate the bounty, it’s also a time of year when we more deliberately try to make sure those who have very little get a little something extra.
Giving back has always been a part of the Thanksgiving tradition. In the early days, it was about sharing and giving prized items to newcomers, something that has always been an integral part of indigenous cultures — a way to show respect and acceptance and fellowship.
The evolution of those practices has become volunteering, whether it be serving lunch at a shelter or packing boxes of holiday tidings for distribution by the local food bank. And for those who can’t give of their time, they can give part of their good fortune to help provide for others. If only we could make the giving of thanks and the concern for our fellow man extend all year. It’s certainly a good goal for our society.
Take the time to inventory your blessings this Thanksgiving. Appreciate those you will celebrate the day with and reach out to loved ones who can’t be at your table. Give politics a break for the day and have conversations that really matter. Or have talks that are just filled with fun and laughter. This world has enough to worry about the rest of the year.
Football and movies and parades are part of the landscape of many homes on the holiday. But maybe we could all take a break from our tablets and laptops and phones for at least a few hours. Focus on just one thing and take a vacation from being a multi-tasker. Pitch in and help prepare the meal, entertain the kids or set up the after-dinner, old-school board games. They’re making a comeback, we hear.
So is kindness. From the local student who bought his fellow classmate a new bicycle to the person who pays for the coffee of the next in line, acts of kindness are being recognized and celebrated. We challenge you to find a way to brighten someone’s day this holiday.
For our part, we are thankful for many things big and small this November and for being part of this community for 70 years.