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EndNotes

Posts tagged: Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving and shopping?!

I remember when the stores closed on Sunday (I was a child, yes), while a few drug stores and gas stations remained open “for an emergency,” my parents said. No emergency ever made its way into our family on Sunday.

And now…retailers are whining over anticipated lost profits because our national day of Thanksgiving is a bit tardy this year. So, come all ye consumers and spend, spend spend.

Ugh.

Protest, says Ellen Galinsky, co-founder and president of Families and Work Institute: stay home. Vote with your slippered feet and full belly and fireplace flickering light upon the faces you love. Time together offers a better return on one’s investment in relationships, serving a menu of love, worthy of one’s undivided attention. 

(S-R archive photo)

Lobsters, seals and swans, oh, my!

It wasn’t all just talking turkey – or eating only turkey at the first Thanksgiving.

 Did you know?

  • The first Thanksgiving was a three-day harvest feast
  • Governor William Bradford sent four men to hunt birds for the feast while the Wampanoag contributed five deer
  • The only foods from the original feast that we eat are turkey, corn and stuffing
  • President Lincoln made Thanksgiving “official”     
  • Today, 46 million turkeys are eaten at Thanksgiving
  • Americans eat an average of 13.3 pounds of turkey each year
  • The Macy’s parade started in 1924 with live animals, replaced with helium balloons three years later

 What are your Thanksgiving traditions? What food do you eat? Who cooks? Anyone offer thanks? Anyone leave early to shop?

(S-R photo)

Gather, give thanks, skip the shopping

Rebecca's post describing Thanksgivings past sounds familiar. I remember sitting at the dining room table with my sisters, parents, grandparents and great aunt and uncle. I loved the candlelight, the fancy dishes and the music in the next room, courtesy of the hi-fi. My mom did ALL the work and I mean all of it. She claims she had the week to prepare, with no working outside the home, she worked endlessly within that home.

Today our little family of three drove 120 miles to reunite with cousins and more cousins - from 17 to 73-years-old. Our family today includes people who left Russia for Denver to start a new life 14 years ago. We ate turkey, but also homemade ravioli, courtesy of the Italian heritage. And we carefully assessed the possibilities in the just-brought-it last-week- from-Germany box of chocolates.

Our tradition has evolved in our family: our group travels farther, the atmosphere is more casual,  we share a unique diversity, but the gratitude for good food, laughter and stories of our family remains. We are a touchstone for all that has been.

How did this American custom of Thanksgiving begin?? (Hint: Had nothing to do with Black Friday or Cyber Monday)

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About this blog

Writer Catherine Johnston of Olympia, Wash., addresses issues facing aging baby boomers and seniors as well as issues of serious illness, death and dying, grief and loss.

Ask a question: Catherine welcomes questions about aging issues and grief. Email her at endnotescolumn@gmail.com.

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