Monday, November 21, 2016

How to Have a Healthy Thanksgiving with Traditional Food

This post came to be after a few random things happened to me, I hope you'll hang in there with me as I tell you about them. 

Last week a friend of mine posted in a group on Facebook asking for healthy Thanksgiving recipes ideas. She tagged me specifically (Gasp! Like I was an expert) and asked said she was contemplated cauliflower mashed "potatoes".  I was so ashamed that I wasn't making anything but my regular recipes that it took me three whole days to reply to her post because I couldn't think of a way to justify myself in making such regular food when I was supposed to be a healthy expert. 

Next Story

We have two of our kids flying in from California to spend the week of the holiday with us. It is Joseph's birthday and so the time around Thanksgiving is really important to our family to be together. Joseph was asking me what the plans were, who was bringing what, and what could he do to help out to make sure the day was less stressful. I listed all the things that we would be bringing and we talked about our plans for the day and I mentioned how much I wanted to enjoy the whole day and not spend the entire time stressing out about a meal that wasn't going to happen until 5pm and then spend the next 4 hours cleaning up.  

Next Random Happening

I was cleaning up after breakfast yesterday and the kitchen table was a mess. It has recently become more of a mess as Charlie has entered the write on everything stage. So instead of just wiping down the kitchen table after breakfast, I began to scrub the whole table and stress about Thanksgiving. Were people going to be offended by sitting at my worn and used/abused table. Should I get a table cloth? What about the tables that I was going to bring in from the garage - Ugh, now I need 4 new table cloths. The Dishes! - There is no way I have enough dishes, I was just going to use the costco paper plates, are people going to be offended by that? Should I use the special Thanksgiving paper plates? Should I buy new dishes? Should I buy a new table?!?  ... Panic...  

I am not a big fan of the Thanksgiving holiday, I am not even a real big fan of November.  It can just be Pre-December as far as I am concerned. But I do really really like getting together with my family. And I love good food, and I love celebrating, and I love making memories. 

And so what does all of that have to do with having a healthy Thanksgiving and not making To-furkey?  (That's tofu turkey... and it is a thing apparently)

Let your family and friends be your focus. Let the love that you share be the most important part of your day. Yes, you are probably going to have a bigger meal than you have had all month, It is one meal.  But you are also going to sit at a table for that one meal with family that you might not have seen all year. THAT should be the focus.  Take a few, or a lot, of extra moments and enjoy the people that you are around the table with. 

We are getting some pretty grown up kids in our house, and I worry that maybe next year that won't be around my table. - Perhaps they'll be away at school, or decide to go to their girlfriend's (who might soon be more) house. Joseph's parents are getting quite old, what if this is the last year that we have one of them. This is the first year since I can remember that all my siblings are going to be together. I am very excited for that.  It has been over 6 months since I have seen two of our boys. ( I bet they are both 3 inches taller than me now). 

So I am going to make candied yams and pumpkin pies and we'll eat whipped cream on one and marshmallows on the other and I'll make a salad that gets ignored. But I am going to spend my energy and my focus on the people that I am choosing to share the day with and who are choosing to travel and sacrifice to share the day with me. After all, the best part of having a good life is having good people to share it with.