Happy Thanksgiving! I am very thankful this year to have loyal readers like you, and as always, look forward to hearing your comments, questions, and suggestions. Let me know how I can help you, and I will do my very best!
Here’s a quick Thanksgiving reminder: After you’ve enjoyed a wonderful holiday feast, please be sure not only to thank your hosts at the time, but to send a quick handwritten note afterwards as well, letting them know how much you enjoyed your time together. This definitely goes for parents or relatives as well as friends. Writing has a “weight” lacking in the spoken word, as important as the spoken word may be.
Please, do not make this thank you note generic. You can easily include things very specific to this occasion, such as compliments on a special dish (probably best to make sure it was prepared by your host or hostess, not purchased, or brought by another guest).
Or perhaps you will express appreciation for the décor, comment on how delightful the children were, how much you enjoyed the other guests, or refer to something particularly interesting that your host(s) may have mentioned, and that you have, or intend to, follow up on. This could be a recommended book, a movie, a sports figure to keep an eye on, a household tip, a “handyman how-to,” a recipe, a new restaurant to try, a new golf swing… Well, you get the idea.
If you are sincere about it (and that means you really will do something about it) you might even mention a specific future get-together. Put a note in your phone or datebook to make sure you do follow through.
For me, Thanksgiving is probably the most nostalgic holiday – the hustle and bustle of planning, shopping, cooking, and finally, most importantly – sitting down around the table with friends and family who mean so much to us.
You know how the little things you do for the first time can wind up being “family traditions”?
I think about going around the table, with each person – even the youngest – sharing what he or she is most grateful for, each year.
For the kids in the family, after dinner was the time to get away from adult conversation, and start thinking about what they were hoping Santa Claus would bring for Christmas. This led to elaborate, wonderfully decorated Christmas wish lists, to be posted on the back of the bathroom door on Friday.
Polishing the silver was always a “paid job,” resulting in a little extra for the children’s holiday gift-giving fund. But, truth to tell, the hand-made gifts have always been our favorites, and meant the most.
Oh, and I can’t forget making the bread or cornbread stuffing for the turkey. This was a tradition that even the very youngest kids could take part in – after their hands were scrubbed thoroughly! We sat around the table and tore the bread into bits to stuff the turkey the next morning.
Wonderful traditions. Everyone is older, and some of the earlier traditions are being replaced with the new. We use boxed stuffing mix now, but it is traditional for the same, now grown-up kid to make the stuffing in the microwave. New traditions continue with another grown-up kid always making the gravy. Another carving the turkey. Another makes the Thanksgiving table centerpiece. And so it goes.
Let us hear about your family’s traditions!