So, we are barely a week into November and Christmas is in full swing – from the beautifully decorated storefronts and boutiques downtown, to the waft of peppermint-spiked mondo, half-whipped, skinny mochachinos escaping the front doors of every Starbucks, ‘tis the season! I know in my house, my minis are begging me to start the never-ending loop of holiday favorites such as Elf and Emmett Otter’s Jugband Christmas on the dvd player. List have been written and re-written to their beloved, jocular Saint of the North. Expectations climb higher and higher everyday and I am struggling to slow the frenetic pace and switch focus instead to one of my favorite holidays of the year – Thanksgiving. Don’t get me wrong, I am NO Grinch and embrace the magic and wonder of the Christmas holiday in its entirety; but not until December.
Thanksgiving by its very definition is a celebration of gratitude. We give thanks for family, friends, and count the many, many blessings of our lives. We have four whole days to play, and eat, and rest, and be…thankful. Unfortunately, in the hard-driving consumer-culture of the advertising age, Thanksgiving has become a speed bump on the way to Black Friday mad-dash shopping which the flyers in the newspapers have been counting down to for weeks. I must say that I have loved the Facebook surge that I have seen many folks embracing by expressing daily gratitude. For those of you that have been doing this – thank you for reminding us all that it is so important to reflect on our good fortune. We have all experienced hardships and frustrations and difficult times but all it takes for me to get a little perspective on what I call my “champagne problems” is to lift up my head from my immediate reality and become aware that meeting the basic needs of my family – food, shelter, health and loving support – is a distant luxury for many, many people the world over.
Wow…I promised Kris and Bob (and you) that my blog posts would cease to be so heavy and here I go beating you all about the head and neck with my soapbox of today – Be Thankful! Be Present! Christmas can wait, and should wait, until after Thanksgiving. What do you do in your families and among your friends to celebrate gratitude? We would love to hear.
*And in case you just cannot suppress the urge for a bit of holiday shopping this month, support American made products or give the gifts of experience. (This will be an entirely separate post in the not too distant future on gift suggestions as we have LOTS of ideas!)
In the meantime, a snapshot of a memory with Neve and my wee ones that reminds of a day well spent following their bliss.
In the meantime, create a day that you love,