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Let’s have a real Thanksgiving

Posted: November 10, 2011 11:35 a.m.
Updated: November 11, 2011 5:00 a.m.

It’s been nearly two weeks since Halloween. 

And if the sound of holiday music and sight of Christmas trees in every store in America is any indication, I’d venture to say that we’ve already run smack-dab into the middle of the holiday season.

Under normal circumstances, I would be OK with that. Christmas trees make me smile. I look forward to being able to watch, and recite the lines to “A Christmas Story” each year. 

I can even stomach the overcrowded malls and lines in stores during Christmastime -- and this is coming from a person who usually hates waiting in line for any reason at all.

But this year, there’s something about hearing Christmas music in early November that leaves me feeling a lot more annoyed than cheerful. For goodness sakes, Dec. 25 is still six weeks away and I’m already Christmas-ed out.

Last week, I opened the mailbox to find what appears to be John and mine’s first Christmas card. At this rate, I’ll never make it to the end of the year with my sanity.

But if there’s one thing I’ve learned during recent years, it’s that as much as I enjoy looking at Christmas lights and seeing wreaths on the front doors of people’s homes, I’m actually starting to prefer the subdued nature of Thanksgiving. For me, the “joy” of Christmas has been sucked out of the holiday season. It seems as if all I hear now are people contemplating how much debt they’re willing to go in when buying Christmas gifts this year.

But Thanksgiving is a time to simply remember what we have -- and that’s something I’ve learned to value during the past couple of years.

Can you walk into your house or apartment and cut a light on? If so, then you’ve got something to be thankful for.

Are you able to get out of bed in the morning? If so, then you’ve got something to be thankful for.

Did you see or talk to your spouse, parent or child today? If so, then you’ve got something to be thankful for.

Thanksgiving is simple. No gifts, getting trapped in long lines at the store, parties or holiday cards are required.

Isn’t that something worth being excited about, for at least more than just one day?

So do me a favor … please take off that jingling Christmas sweater, at least until after the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade.

Thanksgiving is supposed to be the time of year when we quietly reflect back on our blessings.

Maybe it’s time that we learned to celebrate that.

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