Thanksgiving Thoughts: Be Grateful for What We Have

After sharing a great meal with my family on Thanksgiving Day, I sat out by the fire on our back patio, thinking of what I was grateful for this year. I pondered the fact that our giving of thanks quickly becomes just the prelude to the extremely commercial shopping experience of our modern holiday season.

I pulled out the video camera and caught the essence of my thoughts to share with you here. In a nutshell, we here in the U.S. live by pretty high standards compared to a lot of the world, and I think we would all benefit by remembering that and being grateful for what we have.

Too often we are focused on stuff, and yet that stuff is just that: stuff. It won’t make us happier, it won’t make us more successful, and it won’t make us better husbands, wives, or parents. Let’s give thanks this holiday season for what we already enjoy: our family, our friends, our community, and the fact that our basic needs are always met.

Image: k4dordy at Flickr

Derek Markham

Things I dig include: simple living, natural fatherhood, attachment parenting, natural building, unassisted childbirth (homebirth), bicycles, permaculture, organic and biodynamic gardening, vegan peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips, bouldering, and the blues. Find me elsewhere at @NaturalPapa, @DerekMarkham, Google+, or RebelMouse.

8 thoughts on “Thanksgiving Thoughts: Be Grateful for What We Have

  • November 29, 2009 at 9:53 am
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    One really sees the point of your message when you get ready to move to a new house – everyone collects so much stuff that we just put away in corners and don’t even remember we have. I feel a little better about it each time we bring several bags to Goodwill, but it still seems like an endless stream of stuff.
    .-= Earth Friendly Goodies´s last blog ..Hey, You Put Your Beer on My Village People! =-.

    Reply
    • November 29, 2009 at 10:17 am
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      Yes, we just moved recently, and think we could have gotten rid of so much more, even though at the time we had a hard time letting go.

      Reply
  • November 29, 2009 at 10:09 am
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    Thanks for sharing your thoughts! I completely agree that we should really take a look at what this holiday season is really about. Spending time with family and building memories is far better that buying “stuff”. Last year we started a no gift xmas for the adults and a 1 gift rule for kids. We replaced that tradition with a cookie making event and what a difference it makes. We want to raise our daughter with this philosophy throughout the year and are brainstorming ways to kick-off her 1st birthday with a similar philosophy!

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    • November 29, 2009 at 10:18 am
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      The no-gift and 1 gift rule sound great – we did something similar one year as well, and now we try to keep it very simple.

      Reply
  • November 14, 2010 at 3:00 pm
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    Great post, kids seem to loose the meaning behind the holidays and think only about the gifts. This is one year I won’t be able afford much and a new training process for the kids. Thanks for sharing,

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  • November 21, 2010 at 8:07 pm
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    What really surprised me the other day is learning about Matt Daman’s work campaigning for more awareness (and money) for America’s food bank projects, and that there are 50 million people living in hunger in America.

    Every wealthy family should donate some food to the food banks.

    Reply

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