November 16, 2010

Thanksgiving, The Forgotten Holiday

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart
Over the years it seems as if we jump from Halloween straight to Christmas, overlooking Thanksgiving.  The Christmas lights have been going up on houses all over town, and although that doesn't bother me, it does bother me that they have been turned on already.  If you live in Iowa, you know the weather will change quickly, so people taking advantage of warm weather to put up the Christmas lights on the outside of their homes makes sense.  It's just that I don't feel they should turn those lights on until after Thankgiving. 

Okay, I am old fashioned and perhaps a prude.

Thanksgiving is being pushed aside.  It is becoming a silent holiday for everyone or perhaps even a day when the shoppers are now heading to the stores to buy Christmas gifts.  Yes, it used to be the day after Thanksgiving, but more and more stores are now opening on Thanksgiving Day.

I love Thanksgiving.  It is just as important to me as Christmas.  I have so many wonderful memories of my childhood when we would travel from our home in Western New York down to Pennsylvania to visit my Uncles and Aunts for a grand Thanksgiving gathering.  I loved traipsing in the woods on the farms looking for the wildlife and coming back to the smells of a wonderful buffet meal being spread on a big table.  I can almost smell the scents in the woods as we played and the feel of the cold air on my cheeks.  Then to come back to a warm old farm house with the smells of all of the wonderful Thanksgiving foods placed on a large table ready to eat - well, it was heaven.

Thanksgiving still means a lot to me and people are missing out on not taking the time to set aside that one day to be thankful.  We do have much to be thankful for.

Thanksgiving to me means sitting at the table with loved ones, friends and/or family, taking part of a special meal and reflecting on our lives and what we have to be thankful for.  I have always felt that Thanksgiving gets our hearts ready for the Christmas season - a time to celebrate the birth of Christ.  If there has been anytime in recent years that we need to pause and be thankful, it is this year.  The economy may still be in a "sick" mode, but we don't have to worry about going to church and being arrested for practicing our faith.  We don't have to worry that our children will be conscripted into an army of militants.  We don't have to worry that when we go to vote, we could be blown up by a suicide bomber.  Yes, we may be going through some hard economic times, but if we dig down real deep inside ourselves, we can find many things to be thankful for.

I am thankful for my family, for my oldest son who found a job this year and moved himself and his wife back to our community.  I am thankful that my husband has a job that provides for our needs. I am thankful that our youngest son is having an awesome Senior year.  I am thankful that I can be home full time and concentrate on all things homemaking.  I am thankful that I have a home, food and clothing and that I have many, many more luxuries such as a bathroom that has a heater in the ceiling. I can take a nice long hot bath and the room always remains nice and toasty.  I am thankful that even though my Kia Sportage is in the shop being worked on, the problem is covered by the warranty.  I am thankful that I have a vehicle in the first place.  I am thankful for health insurance and that we are all healthy.  I am thankful and grateful for a wonderful church and church family. 

I am thankful to my heavenly father who loves me even when I mess up and am ashamed - I am always welcomed back to "the fold." 

So, let's not forget Thankgiving this year and every year.  Let us always remember that even when times get tough, we can find at least one thing that we are thankful for - even if it is a vehicle in the shop. 


Terri aka strangeknit said...

I was making this very point to my grandmother in law today. She has some of her Christmas decorations out. My husband and I don't think about that until December 1st. I do buy gifts sooner but that is to find great deals.

My family always came together for our traditional meal. We enjoyed spending the time together.

I think our mind is so caught up with being consumers that we don't appreciate family tradtions. We don't realize that every thing has its season. Rushing to Christmas makes feel anxious thus I cant enjoy the birth of Jesus. Just can't get into enjoying the tine with our families because it drags on since hallowen. It loses that special feeling of mystery and beauty.

Moxie said...

LOL I'm a prude too then!! I am so thankful for many things this year!! Great blog post!

lkgaug said...

I agree, people and stores are so caught up in Christmas that Thanksgiving is forgotten. It seems like Santa comes earlier and earlier each year. I, too, have wonderful memories of my childhood Thanksgiving celebrations -- we would load up the car and go to Chicago to my grandmother's home then on Thanksgiving Day we would go to my Aunt and Uncle's for the "big" family dinner! That would be the time for everybody to catch up and have family time - great memories!!

Martha said...

I looked out my front living room window a few minutes ago and two neighbors have their Christmas lights on all over the outside of their house. Ugh. Perhaps I should go out and buy one of those big blow up turkeys and put it in my front yard.