The Scrooge of Thanksgivings Past

Last week, I casually posted the following status update on Facebook:

Gotta admit I’m just not feeling the Thanksgiving love because we won’t have family here (and cooking a huge dinner for just us doesn’t appeal). Can a person still feel gratitude and order pizza?

I was 1) burned at the stake 2) invited to several people’s celebrations and 3) accused of being sneaky so I would get invited to said celebrations.

Believe me, subtly ain’t my style. I’m nothing if not direct.

Here’s the deal: I get why people love Thanksgiving. I mean, there are certain elements that are great: An attitude of gratitude. Spending time with family preparing and eating a big feast. Being united no matter what denomination or creed.

My disdain for football aside, it’s just never been a holiday I’ve embraced. In Canada, we celebrate Thanksgiving in October and I haven’t been home to celebrate since I went away to college. My freshman year, my best friend Lori invited me to join her family and while lovely, I felt like a third wheel. From that point on, I declined all invitations and even volunteered three years in a row to serve Thanksgiving dinner at the local food bank.

And was turned town three years in a row.

Maybe that is the root of my Thanksgiving angst. Who gets rejected for helping the homeless?!

It just seems we’ve diluted the meaning of all our meaningful holidays. Thanksgiving has become less about thanks-giving and more about football and stuffing ourselves silly. Many Black Friday sales are no longer on Friday and have been bumped up to Thursday. I’ve been alarmed how few children know the story of the first Thanksgiving and we’ve been focusing on expressing our gratitude lately.

This year, it’s just my husband, kids and me. While we have many close friends in Denver, they will be spending the day with their families. For this reason, I’m perfectly happy to do our own form of celebration that doesn’t involve slaving in a kitchen all day but rather:

1) Hauling our butterball butts up the Turkey Trot trail at Mount Falcon.
2) Serving a low-maintenance meal I actually like (no offense to the leftover turkey lovers but it’s just not a favorite.)
3) Snuggling up to my beloved family for a movie marathon.
4) Napping.
5) Calling family and expressing our love for them.

For me, those are five things that will make me pretty darn grateful.

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