Remember when you were a kid and there was that one holiday where your whole family would get together and eat turkey and cranberries and be thankful and stuff? Leading up to this splendid feast, there was a whole season of November fun – making caramel apples, jumping in your neighbor’s leaves, and drawing crayon hand-turkeys just like the pilgrims used to do. And it all culminated in a day of togetherness, thankfulness, football, and glorious gluttony.
Decades later, Thanksgiving dinner is just the carbo loading one does before embarking on a kill-or-be-killed run to Wal-Mart. If it weren’t for the single Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade-sized turkey inflatable on the next block, I would never know Thanksgiving was two weeks away. Black Friday has been slowly creeping into Thanksgiving’s personal space for years, and now it apparently starts on Veterans Day; Christmas lights have been hung and lit; and I have not seen a single crayon hand-turkey. All this, coupled with the sweet potato’s rise to everyday-edible fame has threatened to downgrade Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day holiday status. I refuse to let this happen.
For those who know me, you may be surprised that I care. In fact, I’ve written before about how little I enjoy Thanksgiving (insert questionable green bean casserole flashback here). I’m one of those crazy shoppers who heads to Macy’s at midnight with the Christmas station on in the car, and the trees – yes, trees – go up hours later. But I give Thanksgiving its 24 hours – and I vow to do a better job of giving it its whole season now too.
Here is my list of how I intend to give Thanksgiving its proper due:
- I will watch every Thanksgiving episode of Friends to get in the holiday spirit
- I will incessantly ask all my friends and family why they are thankful this season
- I will incessantly tell all my friends and family why I am thankful this season
- I will reroute my daily drive to go by the neighbor’s inflatable turkey
- If I see Christmas lights, I will outwardly scowl
- I will stop eating sweet potato fries (at least between now and Thanksgiving)
- If I hear Wham singing “Last Christmas” in Brookstone, I will stomp out of the store
- I will return the extra Christmas tree I already bought and rebuy it in December
- I will ignore every instinct to eat figgy pudding
- I will make a crayon hand-turkey
Aside from that, I suspect the best way to keep the holiday relevant for myself and my family is to come up with a few new traditions to bring to the season. Any suggestions? Anyone else noticing a lack of Thanksgiving spirit around here this year?