Thanksgiving is the unassuming, humble holiday that doesn't get the respect it deserves. There are very few Turkey Day holiday specials on TV. Charlie Brown has one and I remember a pilgrim cartoon on PBS when I was younger. The kids' book orders include one Thanksgiving book per every ten Christmas, Kwanzaa and Hanukkah books for sale. There are no brown and orange Thanksgiving lights on the house either. Growing up, our Thanksgiving decorations pretty much comprised of the Cornucopia centerpiece, the pilgrim candles (half melted), and the accordion-fold-out paper turkey. Nowadays, our family has added window clings and, of course, the kids' traced hand turkeys. Other than that, Thanksgiving is just the halfway point on the way to Christmas. It just seems that Halloween and Christmas have grown so large that they are squeezing Thanksgiving out.
But that's not to say that Thanksgiving isn't a fun, memorable, family holiday. One of our family traditions is to watch the movie, Trains, Planes and Automobiles in November. It's a good family comedy except for the one car rental scene. You may want to mute it for thirty seconds or so. This is our favorite Thanksgiving movie. Right now I can't think of any other Thanksgiving movies. Other than that, we pretty much observe the same traditions that every one else does. We eat turkey and pumpkin pie. After overeating, we roll into the living room to watch the Detroit Lions play football. After that we dress in our Pilgrim and Native American costumes and reenact the landing at Plymouth Rock. Just normal things that all families do.
A few weeks ago, I posted about the types of books and movies that I'm drawn to in October. I also have a set of interests for November. I already mentioned Planes, Trains and Automobiles. I also tend to listen to more Aaron Copland music in the days preceding Turkey Day. Listening to Appalachian Spring or Rodeo(the Beef Council song) makes me think of family eating gatherings.
I don't seem to read anything particularly seasonal. I usually read Ten Fat Turkeys to Sweet Pea, but that doesn't have a whole lot of giving thanks. If anyone has any good November reading suggestions, I'm open to them.
It's unfair that Thanksgiving gets the reputation of being the warm up act for Christmas. It is an important holiday. A time to pray and thank God for our blessings. Maybe it is good that Thanksgiving hasn't been as commercialized as much as other holidays. That way it's easier to concentrate on Thanksgiving's true meaning.
A day off to get the Christmas lights on the roof.