I love sharing these suggestions for making your Christmas Holiday simple and fun.
An Annual Tradition
Thanksgiving is a tradition dating back to the 1600s when Pilgrims emigrated from England to America. They struggled with survival and a Native American tribe came to their rescue with food, clothing and helped them build shelter from the winter storms. The Thanksgiving feast was from their harvest and they shared a thanksgiving offering with the Native Americans grateful for their bountiful feast and for their newfound spiritual freedom. We all can take part in our own thanksgiving feast with family and friends that is celebrated in America in November each year. What are you thankful for this year? I am sure you are thankful to have another year of life surrounded by the people you love and are grateful for the simple pleasures in life that give you joy and peace.
Gather with Loved Ones
Thanksgiving is a wonderful time to reconnect with people you haven't seen in a long time. Perhaps your friends or family are taking a break from their work schedules and you can connect over a family dinner. The important thing is to cherish the moments we can spend with loved ones. If you are single, that's okay. Why not invite a neighbor over to your house for a glass of wine or coffee with a traditional pumpkin pie that you've just baked? How about inviting a co-worker to your home for dinner and watching old movies on television? You can even volunteer your time at a homeless shelter or hospice center that will more than welcome your generous donation of your time and energy to help others who may be alone on Thanksgiving. The holidays do not have to be fancy or stressful. You can carve out some time just to be with yourself and count your blessings and look towards the coming new year with gratitude.
Keep It Simple
You do not have to go over your budget or stress out over the holiday season. The point is to gather with people you love or to meet new friends and invite them into your life. Maybe you have your own garden. Then share that bounty with a neighbor or a friend, even a co-worker you want to get to know better. Sometimes being with family can be stressful, so perhaps stop by their house and share fresh fruits and vegetables from your garden, share a glass of wine and then be on your way. No need for any extended stays with family that you really do not want to spend a lot of time with, but want to check in with them and let them know you do care about their well-being. Then be on your way and wish them a happy holiday season.
Save a Turkey
Even though serving turkey is normally a traditional Thanksgiving feast, you can break that tradition and form your own that suits your lifestyle. There are many meatless dishes you can serve for your Thanksgiving dinner, such as pasta dishes with fresh vegetables with side dishes of potatoes and cooked carrots, hot soup with mushrooms and cornbread. Also, many of the vegan meats are extremely tasty and nutritious. Some plant-based protein products include turkey and chicken and there are a variety of brands to try that won't break your budget and will save the life of a turkey this season.
The decorating you do now for Thanksgiving can be the foundation that will bring you into Christmas and New Year's celebrations. You don't have to tear down everything you did for Thanksgiving and then start again for Christmas. Just begin building your decorating theme now. Some people start shopping for a Christmas tree following their Thanksgiving celebration. Again, keep it simple so you are not stressed out or go over your budget. The important thing about holidays is the connection with family and friends and meeting new people along your travels.
If you like string lights, then start with your Thanksgiving holiday decorations and string lights across your windows in your living room. No need to put lights on the outside of your house unless you want to do that closer to Christmas. But never feel pressured to overdo it this year, just keep to your own tradition and do not be influenced by other people.
Do you like a beautiful centerpiece on your dining room table? Then start planning now to collect the rich Autumn colors for the centerpiece with flowers, pine cones, or fruits and nuts with twigs from your trees or bushes.
Be Mindful of your Pets
Be mindful of your pets on Thanksgiving. Do not give any animal meat with bones in it or they could get lodged in their throat. If you want to give your pet table scraps, be sure to take the meat off the bone yourself and feel for any small bones and then give it to your pet. Do not leave the Thanksgiving table full of food unattended or a hungry cat may decide to eat that turkey leg or lick the whipped cream off your pumpkin pie.
Never leave candles unattended and uncovered with pets around. You can get sturdy candle holders with latches on them so pets can't get burned and if the candle holder gets knocked off a table, it can be easily picked up with the candle inside the enclosure and put out of harm's way.
With the holiday season gearing up, the important thing to remember is to reflect on this past year and write down in a journal or diary what you have accomplished. Did you reach your goals? If not, that's okay, but write down your thoughts and feelings.
Do not get caught up in the shopping frenzy so many people do when it's just stressful and then you have to face those credit card bills that arrive as quickly as that bell ringing in the New Year. Set some boundaries in your life. Do not let people drag you around to stores and get caught up in a buying frenzy. The holidays are about the time you can spend alone to be thankful for another year and to plan for next year. Set real goals for yourself and do not be distracted by anything or anyone taking you off course. Take time off from work, go to a spa, a retreat, or a resort. It's okay if you go alone, don't stress out about that. If you have someone special in your life, then plan a trip together to detox and detach from everyday worries.
The important thing about Thanksgiving is just that. Give thanks for another year on this earth and give thanks for the joy and love you have within reach at any given moment.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2022 Nancy M