Reasons to get out of bed…

Posts tagged ‘Holidays’

Happy Thankgiving! (Sorry… I’m late)

Happy belated Thanksgiving! I hope you all had a terrific day. Usually, I’m not really excited for Thanksgiving, but this year I actually liked it. What was different? Well, let’s compare it with last year (which was a pretty typical year).

Last year, we:

  • Drove 45 mins from our house to my parents’ house
  • Ate quickly (5 people in attendance)
  • Drove 2 hours from my parents’ house to my boyfriend’s grandmother’s house
  • Ate a second meal (14 people in attendance – that includes the 5 kids)
  • Drove 2 hours home
    • I’m a vegetarian (not that it’s a big deal, but I feel pretty “meh” about a holiday centered around eating turkey)
    • Also in the “meh” category: I have a small family so Thanksgiving has never been a big “to do.”

This year, we:

  • Drove 12 minutes from our house to my parents’ house (we moved)
  • Ate… somewhat leisurely
  • Drove 25 minutes to T’s um… 2nd cousin (?)’s house and then had the most awesome Thanksgiving ever!
  • Drove 20 minutes home

T’s mother’s first cousin, Mary, decided to host a giant Thanksgiving this year and invited the entire, extended family. Why? This is why:

baby girl 6mo

“Everyone wants to snuggle me!”

 

Mary owns a hostel/wedding venue so there was plenty of room for all sorts of extended family – and all sorts of relatives flew in from all over the country. In total, this Thanksgiving dinner included 43 other people! (including 3 other vegetarians!)

After dinner, we all partook in some square dancing! (Thanks to the baby for taking a nap so both T and I could participate, even though we weren’t planning on it – it was actually a lot more fun than I was expecting). There was contra dancing after the baby woke up. I’ve never done this much cardio AFTER the meal before!

Friday had more events! The baby and I drove back (T had to work… boo!) for an arts and crafts project of creating a topiary!

T's family and me, working on our topiaries!

Me and T’s family, working on our topiaries!

And Friday night, after dinner (T arrived for dinner) there was a talent show! And the family was all really talented! There were lots of musicians, some dancers, one cousin did some crazy push ups (including clapping and spinning 360° from a push up position!), and even some comedy/magic!

It was awesome!

It even motivated T to play the guitar again, which he hasn’t done in a few years. He has to get ready for the next time the family does this sort of event. I hope that’s really soon because it was so much fun!

Baby Guitar

Happy belated Thanksgiving from my little family:

Thanksgiving family photo

Oh… and here are some of the Thanksgivings images I thought about posting, but clearly didn’t get to on time:

Happiness food hat

Be thankful

Black friday

Advertisements

Shopping Locally

(I thought I posted this 2 weeks ago… oops! Sorry!)

Let me start by saying that I love online shopping. It’s so easy and convenient! My boss jokes that I should own stock in Amazon.com considering how much I love it (have you used their wishlist feature? I love it! I wish everyone I know had a public wishlist – it’s like a registry for life! If someone has a birthday coming up, I’d way rather get a gift they need/want than something random that I may love but they may hate… or already own!)

However, a local radio station played a PSA around Thanksgiving that really resonated with me and I thought I would share it. It was advocating for the idea of shopping locally and how valuable that can be for a local economy.

I think that’s a really common and basic concept, that shopping at local boutiques and shops legitimately help your neighbors. In my city, most of those local shops close before 6 pm (I get out of work at 6 pm), have no parking, and are so beyond my budget that it’s laughable. However, I don’t know that for certain… because they are inconvenient for me, I have never explored them. But I am determined to try this year. Who knows, I might find something really cool that I can actually afford!

Shop small

Something else the PSA said that I had never thought about was gifting certificates to local restaurants and pizza places. I don’t usually give gift certificates because they are no fun to unwrap… but I love locally owned places. They often are amazingly yummy with great ambiance. If you live in the New England area, I would recommend you check out the Phantom Gourmet‘s website – it can help you find new places to try or give you more information. It’s also helpful if you’re trying to find a place to meet someone in an area you don’t typically visit (ie you’re meeting a friend who lives far away at a place equidistant between you…)

difference in community

Finally, the radio station pointed out that even large chains can help your local economy. Physically shopping at the store is even helpful because that store employs the people in your neighborhood. If they have customers, they need employees, and those people are part of your local community. As opposed to buying something online, where the money goes to a warehouse who knows where… Buying online will help you employ people outside of your community…

The point the radio station was trying to make was that online shopping can be easy but you’re shipping your money into other communities instead of keeping any of it in your own community. That thought really stuck with me.

Community Finances

I’m not trying to preach to you or tell you what to do. But I’m really going to make an effort this year to not buy anything online, to actually visit stores. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still going to look up prices and sales online, but my wallet will be opening in front of a cashier and not my monitor.

Happy holiday shopping!

Thanksgiving Recap

After all my whining and complaining about how I don’t like Thanksgiving, it actually turned out to be not so bad. I may have also realized that I don’t hate Thanksgiving, I hate all of the stress and obligation associated with 2 Thanksgivings.

I have been blissfully in love with my wonderful boyfriend for over ten years, but we’ve only started “sharing” Thanksgiving in the last few years. We would spend (late) lunch with one family and then drive 2 hours to have dinner with the other family (total driving for the day: 5 hours). So lately, Thanksgiving feels rushed and stressful and gross.

Unfortunately for my boyfriend, he was super sick on Thanksgiving. He stayed home napping on the couch, and I only had to attend one meal this year! The one with my family where all of my favorite comfort foods would be! (His mother is a wonderful cook… but their family eats different things than mine on Thanksgiving… so it doesn’t have that cozy feeling that I associate with my mom’s cooking… and I’m sure my boyfriend feels the same way about the meal at my family’s house, and that’s ok.) It was really nice. No stress, no feeling late. I got to enjoy the whole meal. And for the first time in years, I got to enjoy a nap after the meal! Lovely!

Now I remember why people actually like this holiday!

I’m so thankful for so many things in life: my wonderful boyfriend, my family, my friends, my job, my health, and not getting pulled over when I sped past that cop on the highway on Thanksgiving! (oops!) My life is wonderful and I’m so happy with all the little blessings!

I hope you are able to feel the same with your life. Happy Thanksgiving!

This was NOT my Thanksgiving this year and I’m thankful for that!

And the Holiday Season Begins…

Thanksgiving is almost upon us. And to be totally honest, as these major holidays go, Thanksgiving is my least favorite. In fact, I almost hate it. I used to just have a “meh” attitude towards it, but then I started having to share Thanksgiving and it all spiraled out of control.

I know many people love Thanksgiving (heck, it’s my super awesome boss’s favorite). I understand, that unlike many of the other holidays, it’s not all about shopping and gifts and commercialism. It’s about family… and turkey…

And that’s pretty much why I don’t love the holiday… I’m a vegetarian so… eh… on the turkey. Although my mother makes a lovely spread. But now that my wonderful boyfriend and I share Thanksgiving, we go to both family’s houses. It means a total of 5 hours of driving, missing parts of meals, and being generally stressed about leaving early/arriving late. Plus, there is a huge change in mental attitudes from one house to the next. One house is super chill, in fact it’s “pajamas Thanksgiving” so we can all be thankful about being comfortable! The other house has a lot more people, is super chaotic, is formal, and generally a little more stressful. It’s a little complicated to switch gears that drastically.

We’ve thought about only going to one… but that wouldn’t fly with either family… and we don’t think the families would mix well… So while for many this is a holiday about family… for us it’s also a little about obligations to family. Please don’t get me wrong though, I do love both families and I do love the idea of taking a day out of life to really focus on all that we’re thankful for. It’s nice to stop and notice all of the blessings in one’s life. I do really love that part about the day.

It’s just one day and we’ll all survive. But! To keep my spirits up for this day I thought I would post little Thanksgiving or vegetarian jokes/cartoons leading up to Thursday. You have to be able to laugh at yourself right?

So here’s the first one (I posted it last year, but I still love it):

Tag Cloud