If you’re like me, you’re probably exhausted from hearing so much about what you should and should not do for the upcoming holiday. There’s a lot of “don’t." So I thought I would focus on the “do.”
Thanksgiving has never been that big of a deal at our house. For the first half or more of my career, I worked on Thanksgiving. And, for the most part, we have always gone to celebrations hosted and catered by other members of the family. In return, we generally host a Christmas get-together for family and friends.
So, this year—for the first time ever—we are going to spend Thanksgiving as a family. Just our immediate family.
I’m not going to lie. There’s not going to be much cooking involved, thanks to the talented chefs at Whole Foods. But we will sit at the table together with all the traditional holiday dishes and break bread.
In a way, this new tradition is something that is long overdue. It is a moment in our lives that says everything you really need in life can be found right there around your kitchen table. It doesn’t mean we won’t miss seeing the other family members—we will. But it means that we don’t need the pomp and circumstance that generally comes with the holiday to enjoy the people we love, near and far.
So, here’s my list of “do,”—Do eat a meal together, share it with the people in your immediate family, reach out to others who cannot be there, laugh, play games, relax.
My mother once told me that the best days of our lives are rarely special occasions because we put too much emphasis on them being perfect. They can never live up to our imaginations. She said the best days of our lives are usually surprises, unscheduled, memorable moments created from imperfect planning and happenstance. Thanksgiving is just a day like any other, and I feel sure the best days are yet to come.
Amanda is the mom of two, a reporter for WRAL-TV and the author of several books including some on motherhood. Find her here on Mondays.