Thanksgiving is my family’s holiday. It’s usually tucked between two birthdays, and earlier in the month is someone’s anniversary.  No other in-laws wanted to claim it for holiday get-togethering, so it’s forever ours.

Reflecting on the first Thanksgiving I ever hosted (which was yesterday), I have so much to be thankful for.  I believe that holidays, big life events, and sometimes those times you just invite others over, the biggest gift it just showing up.  I just want to see family and friends – to share in food, laughter, and storytelling – and I am lucky to receive it.  I have family and friends who show up.  Now, we can’t always make everything, and that’s totally reasonable, but I always have a solid group of people I love who show up.  Whether they’re only 20 minutes away or 4 hours away, they get here.  It’s incredible.  That’s a gift.

What’s even more incredible is that nobody comes empty-handed or without an offer to help once they’re here.  Because it was our first Thanksgiving to host, we invited everyone to bring a side or a beverage.  Needless to say, we had a feast and now an entire fridge of leftovers that I will sharing with those who are still around.  I am so grateful for how generous people are – in time, cooking skills, in necessary objects (such as multiple folding tables and chairs that we do not own in our 1-bedroom apartment but couldn’t host without), in dish-washing abilities, in furniture rearranging, and for their words.

I hope to take this lesson and hold it in my heart for more than just Thanksgivings to come.  I hope this makes me a better friend, family, and guest for when I show up to other’s events.

So thank you.  For everything.



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