I don’t know what year it happened but there’s not much of a doubt in my mind anymore. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Once I outgrew the feeling of excitement that came with waking up and opening Christmas presents, it became apparent. You cannot outgrow Thanksgiving.
There is nothing like Thanksgiving dinner. My personal favorites are stuffing, cranberry sauce and of course turkey. I was never wild about dessert but if someone makes a cherry pie, I’ll eat it. Taking in a great meal with many family members and watching football will never get old. On Sundays during the NFL season, sometimes I feel spoiled sitting and just watching football and not doing much else with my day. But on Thanksgiving, I get to do this, eat a ton and enjoy the company of my family. All of it is okay on this day.
I’m lucky enough to still have all four of my grandparents still alive. I have an aunt, uncle and two cousins that live only an hour away. I have an older sister in graduate school and a younger brother in college just like I am. Everyone congregates somewhere and recently it’s been my house in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. I’m sure this is no different than many other Thanksgiving celebrations across the country, but it doesn’t have to be different to be enjoyable. I’ve grown to respect the tradition of Thanksgiving. It doesn’t have to change to get better. I don’t want it to change because as long as it stays the same I’ll always enjoy it for what it is.
I never particularly cared for the Thanksgiving Day parades. My family has had a dog for 10 years so the National Dog Show is pretty much a staple in the living room after the parades. It’s all part of our thing. Being in college, there aren’t as many moments like this anymore. Certainly the other holidays are separate moments, but in my opinion, Thanksgiving is the one that has changed the least.
The older I’ve gotten, the less I need to be crossing my fingers for that big holiday gift. I don’t need the surprise of what’s under the Christmas tree or in my Easter basket. Now, I just enjoy the value of a long-lasting tradition like Thanksgiving. In many ways, it’s kind of like my annual trip to the National Baseball Hall of Fame for induction weekend. There’s almost nothing different each year, with the exception of a few additions or subtractions to the group of people on the trip, but there’s a beauty in doing the same thing over and over again, and not changing anything. That’s what Thanksgiving has become for me, and I love every second of it.