Thanksgiving Traditions

Originally published in 2011, this post struck me today. The more things change, the more memories we want to savor. Two Thanksgiving later, the oldest son lives with his college aged brother across town. They will join my daughter and me on Thursday to eat our favorite Thanksgiving foods, watch a little football, and end the day with pie and our special tradition: Watching the Christmas Story.

I hope everyone makes memories, and enjoys the day.



It’s looming and it’s a holiday steeped in tradition, from what we will eat to who we will invite to share our meal.

Thanksgiving is the default family holiday. Tradition says you gather ’round the table with all your loved ones and try to get along while consuming large amounts of food. Years ago, my parents no longer hosted the meal and some of my siblings began to take turns celebrating at our homes.

When it became more difficult to travel with our small children, I began preparing the meal for our family.
I enjoyed cooking all the food and putting my own touches on our traditional dishes. Most of my siblings followed suit with their own families.

But, a few years ago things began to change and expectations for the holiday increased. My kids grew older, traveling was no longer impossible. I got divorced and celebrating at home was awkward. I got remarried and my husband and his family had developed their own traditions and had their own expectations. Trying to please everyone has become quite like spinning plates in the air- one or more are going to come crashing down.

Transition time is facing the fact that holidays, like other aspects of my life, are subject to periodic review. My oldest son will graduate from college next spring. This may be his last Thanksgiving with us for some time. My middle son will leave to begin his college career next fall, and my husband’s children are almost grown as well.

Soon it will be time to begin carving out new traditions, one holiday at a time.


2 thoughts on “Thanksgiving Traditions

  1. Yes, family life is fluid. Enjoy your traditional children with your children. The day sounds good! But with the age of your children, more changes are probably around the corner–maybe before too many years, grandchildren will necessitate finding a high chair!

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