30 Day Gratitude Challenge: Traditions

Happy Thanksgiving Eve! With 30 minutes before Thanksgiving here in the US, the prompt for today is — Traditions that I’m grateful for.

There are a lot of traditions that I enjoy, many of them are actually Chinese American traditions such as celebrating Chinese New Year, eating Dim Sum on the weekends with family, but more than anything, Thanksgiving is a tradition that I’m thankful for.

In college and beyond, I’ve always found Thanskgiving to be a time of reflecting about the year. Call it a prompt that I slowly worked into my life. It’s really about think about the good, bad, ugly, happy and sad times that may have happened and to think about through all of that, the ways in which I’m thankful for. However, even before that, Thanksgiving was always a time spent with family — sometimes, there can be a lot, sometimes not as many family members. Whatever, the number, Thanksgiving was never a time to go on vacation, it was always reserved for family time for me.

As a Chinese American, Thanksgiving for us is about the turkey, stuffing, gravy, and the whole shabang. I know others do other things such as hot pot, go out to eat, etc. However, having grown up in an fairly Americanized family, I am all about the yummy holiday food. While commercialism has in so many ways taken over on Thanksgiving day, I make it a commitment as my family does, to not physically shop for anything that day. We don’t wait in lines. We don’t go out to stores. We may watch football, we may help eat food, sit on the couch with food coma, and have dessert. Even on Black Friday, our jam is to go after lunch. It’s our way to say no to the consumer tendency to go after the deals. No matter what’s out there, whether we want it or not, the tradition for us for Thanksgiving is family time. No shopping (maybe one or two rounds of online shopping); but in terms of physical shopping, unless it’s a Thanksgiving food emergency, we don’t shop.

This is perhaps the one tradition that I was raised on and am thankful for. In fact, if I ever have a family, I probably would do the same as well, because there’s something that’s missed when people in the family eat a quick meal and go out to shop. I find that it turns such a day into consumerism and commericialism, when for that one day, you can spend it with family whether you have it with turkey, hot pot, or a normal dinner that’s no different from any other day. The thing is, the tradition to spend Thanksgiving, to be with family and to think about what I’m thankful for, is one that I personally am excited for and am grateful for.

So there you have it. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s gratitude prompt. Have a great Thanksgiving for those who celebrate! Stay safe! Stay away from shopping if you can and spend some quality time with family and friends. Great traditions should always be remembered, shared, and continued. Happy Thanksgiving guys!

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