To all Conejo Post readers, a very Happy Thanksgiving!
May we realize that somtimes we experience really good holiday celebrations, and other times, not so good. But, no matter what our circumstances are this Thanksgiving, let’s let it be OK.
Wishing you the best with many blessings…
Janna Orkney, Editor
Reprinted from Conejo Post Archives, November 24, 2009, with editing
I was thinking back to Thanksgivings past, and what struck me was the variety of them all. Yes, I have experienced the stereotype of a multi-generational family gathered around a packed table of turkey, dressing, gravy and cranberry jelly, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, and green beans, but how often have I experienced the holiday in full stereotype?
In thinking about past holidays, it surprised me to realize that more often than not, I have celebrated a variation of the traditional picture.
When I was young, it definitely was the full family-press, with grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. We cousins got reacquainted, as our moms and grandma scurried in the kitchen to get all the mouth-watering food on the table warm and ready to eat, at the same time. Our dads and grandpa talked football, and then ate so much that they had to lay down on the floor after dinner, holding their stomachs!
But, as I grew up, things changed. I have experienced Thanksgiving with just my immediate family of husband and children, to larger gatherings including some friends and family , and then sometimes just friends, or just me attending a church dinner or other gathering.
There have been a variety of life circumstances too. Sometimes I have done most of the cooking (perhaps you can tell by my full list of what should be on the dining table!) and sometimes I have been a kitchen helper. And, I have had Thanksgiving when there has been great bounty in my life, and other times when finances were tight.
Why am I sharing this? Because we all get “perfect pictures” in our heads of how a holiday should be, and can make ourselves feel pretty miserable if our experience do not match up to these images.
So, why don’t we go easy on ourselves this holiday?
What I am realizing now is that most all of my Thanksgivings have been good, whether matching perfect pictures or not, and I am much happier if I stay in the moment, rather than comparing where I am to a touched-up photo in a magazine. Plus, there has always been something to be thankful for. Maybe I had a little trouble seeing that at the time, but in retrospect,I do see it.
Again, Happy Thanksgiving, and now, if you will please pass me the squirt whipped cream (in the cannister) to put on a piece of pumpkin pie…