As we head into the last month of 2020, there’s been a lot of reflection about this year. 2020 has been a year for the books! I think we can all agree on that.

Our bonfire to “let go” of everything
2020 and the pandemic have taken from us.

Like everyone else, I have a list of things that 2020 has taken from me. It made me angry, sad, full of rage and resentment, depressed, anxious, hopeless. I had to work through those feelings (and some I’m still working through). Then I wrote down my list and burned it in a bonfire.

I also have a list of things that 2020 has given me. And baaaaby! Let me tell you. That list is more than twice as long as what 2020 has taken from me. And that fills me up with joy and gratitude and peace.

Joy and gratitude and peace were exactly what I needed as we headed into the Thanksgiving week/weekend. It looked a lot different that past Thanksgivings. There was a lot of worry and anxiety and a little sadness trying to decide on the final plan. We ended up doing Thanksgiving just the 5 of us. We had a scaled down menu. We didn’t gather with family and friends. But it was a good Thanksgiving. TD2 said this was the best Thanksgiving ever. She’s 7 and changes her mind more than most people change their underwear (pre-quarantine), but hey I’ll take it.

We started the day with video calls to parents and grandparents. There weren’t fancy outfits and pictures like I had planned, but there was love and rest and good food. AND I managed to get in a 5K power walk with TD3 after we ate to earn my Thanksgiving Day Challenge badge (this alone filled my gratitude meter for the rest of the year, so grateful for the growth I’m seeing in my health journey, but that’s another post).

This year our Thanksgiving dinner consisted
of greens, BBQ ham, rotisserie cornish
hens, and fry bread.

The girls helped plan the menu and prepare the food this year. They wanted to honor the Wampanoag tribe/Native Americans, so we decided to have cornish hens (because we couldn’t find quail) and fry bread. We voted for greens and turkey, but as luck would have it turkey was going to be too expensive so we ended up with our T5 staple – BBQ ham. I actually got a lil sad when I realized we hadn’t actually voted for this so it would be the first time in over 10 years that we wouldn’t have a BBQ ham for Thanksgiving. But God heard my heart and they were on sale and T-Daddy executively decided that he was gonna do one. 🙌🏽🙌🏽) Everything came out amazing! And we gained a new recipe. The girls absolutely loved the fry bread and it made them feel closer to a part of our heritage that we don’t know much about. (FYI – I recommend the book “Fry Bread” for the kiddos. We listened to the author read it and then looked up his recipe.)

T5’s first ever Thanksgiving Scavenger Hunt

The day after Thanksgiving, we did our first Thanksgiving Scavenger Hunt. As part of the hunt, we had to write 26 things we were grateful for using the letters of the alphabet and write gratitude notes to each other. We also played “Would You Rather?”, Pictionary and “Pin the Feathers on the Turkey.” It was fun for everyone and even TD3 joined in on the festivities.

So yeah Thanksgiving 2020 was different. (Heck, the year 2020 is different.) But I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy it and my soul isn’t full. T5 has so much to be grateful for this year. I have so much to be grateful for this year. Because what has been given to me far outweighs what has been taken.

So as we head into the holiday season and elves start appearing all over houses, I’m welcoming the next 30 days with a grateful heart. (Now, if I could only figure out where Santa left his sack, I’d really be grateful!)