Has your Thanksgiving traditions remained the same throughout the years, or have you made changes? Sometimes changes are inevitable and sometimes they’re necessary. Change can also be intentional, as in a choice we make to enhance the experience. For me, a change in our Thanksgiving tradition was inevitable, necessary and intentional.
Growing up, Thanksgiving was always spent at Grandma’s house. It was a home filled with grandparents, parents, aunts, uncles and cousins. We all lived in the same town, within miles of each other, but Thanksgiving was Thanksgiving and that meant dinner at Grandma’s.
But years past and my grandparents grew older and it became hard for them to host dinner to such a large group of people. The family had gotten bigger, with cousins marrying and having children. The family had doubled in size and the tradition for Thanksgiving dinner began to change. That was inevitable and necessary.
The next thing that happened was that my oldest son went away to college. I remember that first Thanksgiving, when he would be coming home. I decided to make another change to our Thanksgiving tradition. I wanted my son to come home for Thanksgiving in MY home. I wanted to plan the menu, cook the turkey and welcome him home.
That was the first year that I started hosting my own Thanksgiving. My parents, siblings and their families came to our home and a new tradition was born. That change was intentional.
This year, my two oldest children will be coming home for Thanksgiving and I’m trying to get ready. I know they’re ready too, because I’ve already received menu requests…
My daughter wants her favorite Chicken Pot Pie. Even though it’s not a typical Thanksgiving side dish, I assured her I would fix it for her while she’s home.
My son wants everything….he refers to it as our Thanksgiving Whobilation (as in the Who’s feast in How the Grinch Stole Christmas). He loves lots of side dishes and big turkey!
So with the menu in the works, the next step is to think about the table settings. Yesterday, I started to gather my dishes that I wanted to use. I love to use my simple white dinnerware. It looks beautiful on the table when used with touches of color and natural elements. Last year, I used some metallic pumpkins and gourds on the table. This year, I want to use these gorgeous feathers and bittersweet branches.
The planning is moving ahead and even though my Thanksgiving tradition has changed from the one I grew up with, it’s better than ever. My Thanksgivings are now filled with my home being opened and welcoming in my family. As my children are growing up and heading toward starting life on their own, they know they have a home to go to for Thanksgiving. They know to come to mom’s just as I always knew that I could go to grandma’s. And when the time comes…when change is either inevitable, necessary or intentional…I will be ready, knowing that I gave them a Thanksgiving tradition to build on…
P.S. If you’d love to create a stenciled burlap runner for your table…it’s so easy!
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