As I write this on Thanksgiving morning, as the only one up in the house so far…I think of balance. We do not travel on Thanksgiving, a wise decision that I made decades ago. Anyone may come and visit I said, but we do not travel. New in our jobs that the time, vacation time was precious, and traveling in the tight Thanksgiving window took all of the joy out of it. Yesterday, as so many of the people around me were travelling or cooking, I was chill. I sewed – the ultimate of chillness.
So what is the balance that I am thinking about? In the big view it is the holiday itself. I know that some view this as a heartless holiday as the original Thanksgiving story we usually hear is at least partly fiction and leaves out that this was probably the beginning of oppression of the Native Americans. Can we balance this with the family-centered holiday that it has become? I love asking people what their family makes for Thanksgiving – the variety of food, some common denominators. While cleaning up our classroom earlier this week, I was chatting about this with a colleague who grew up in Iran. What did she make? Years ago I started by making the same dishes as my mother always had, but she did not have that same experience to draw from. It turns out it is very much the same…her kids lobbied for a very “traditional” set of dishes, diving into their new culture on Thanksgiving, yet keeping their heritage the rest of the year.
The other things that bombards us around Thanksgiving are ads. I have a tiny family, so purchasing holiday gifts is not a big chore. We were never the family that went overboard, and I often have made some of the gifts. This is another place where I want to see balance.
And then there is the issue of time. I discuss this a lot with my students and especially with their parents. As these children often have many gifts and all of them have many opportunities, how much is too much? I often need to ask the question, “Is your child doing too much?” I believe in working for balance of that sort in our daily lives – and often need to think about that for myself, and make thoughtful choices
Now I am rambling a bit, and every post really does need a picture…so here is a little something that I made recently while playing around with all of the selvages that I have been collecting. I made it when I was sick and did not want to risk working on something that I would be bothered if I messed up. It was fun to do, so I think that I will be making more of them…the selvage bin is pretty full!
So, how is the balance in your life? And, what is your Thanksgiving Day like? Traditional, a mix? Please share and comment what you are eating today.