How to Celebrate Thanksgiving

From the time, I was a teenager, I would raise vegetables in a large garden. What I couldn’t raise, I would go to U-pick farms or farm stands and get stuff by the bushel to can. By my mid-twenties, I had around 1,500 canning jars which I filled every year. For jams and jellies, wild black raspberries (black caps) were my target as well as elderberries and wild mint. Scratches and gouges scared my legs and arms from doing battle with the thorn apples and briar bushes. Some of my best wounds came from blackberry bushes that literally tried to tear the clothes from my back. I loved foraging. One year I picked 60 quarts of wild blueberries in the higher up country around our community. And no, I won’t reveal the location. My top year for wild strawberries was 54 pints which I froze to preserve the little jewels for shortcake in the dead of winter. I always used wild apples off our hillside to can applesauce because it had a natural cinnamon taste I loved.
The animals didn’t escape me either. I raised a pig one year. I shot it and butchered it. Soaked it in a huge crock with all the right sweet, salty brine recipe the way my Grandparents did and smoked it in the stone smoke house they used. Another year, I canned a cow I raised. The whole cow. Wood cook stoves have a small firebox so I had to feed the fire frequently. I canned the meat in quart jars in a boiling water bath for three hours a batch. It took me two days around the clock but I had over 150 jars of the best meat on the planet. Oh, and there was the time I stayed up all night feeding the wood stove when I roasted the Thanksgiving turkey in the oven of the wood stove. I never got the stove cranked up but kept the temperature down and slow cooked it. I have never seen the skin on a turkey such a beautiful brown color. It was delicious.
Speaking of the best meat ever, I should get to the real purpose of talking about all this food. Thanksgiving.
How do you celebrate Thanksgiving? Everyone has their traditions.
Here’s a sample Thanksgiving Day timeline:
9-10:00am | Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade Watch giant helium balloons, floats, and marching bands parade through the streets of New York City.
10:00am-12:00pm | Go to the store Thanksgiving, like most holidays in the US, is either a day off or short day for employees. Grocery stores are usually open for the first half of the day, so make sure you get to the store early to pick up all the ingredients you forgot to pick up earlier for your favorite recipes.
12-1:00pm | Watch the presidential turkey pardon Beginning in the mid-20th century, the President of the United States has “pardoned” one or two Thanksgiving turkeys each year, sparing the birds from slaughter.
All day | Watch football It is a good distraction from the fact that you’re probably not eating lunch. After all, you’re going to need to be HUNGRY once dinner time rolls around.
All day | Cook, cook, cook Preparing a Thanksgiving meal can take hours, sometimes even days, depending on what dishes you’re preparing and how many people you’re serving. Just the turkey alone takes at least 20 minutes for every pound, adding up to nearly five hours in the oven for the biggest birds.
6-10:00pm | Eat more than you thought was humanly possible It’s probably not surprising that there’s an American holiday based solely around eating, but it might be surprising how much eating you can actually do if you put your mind to it.
4. What’s for Thanksgiving dinner?
Turkey Stuffing Cranberry sauce Green bean casserole (thank you Betty Crocker) Sweet potatoes Gravy Mashed potatoes Condiment tray including pickles dill and bread and butter , olives black and green Pumpkin pie, Apple pie, Pecan pie, Cherry pie, etc.
Next morning, you are up before dawn, maybe even by midnight, headed for the Black Friday sales. It is the unofficial beginning of the Holiday shopping season. Black Friday is the day for the deep discounts you’ve been waiting for to get that special item! General hysteria ensues as people run from one store to the next in search of the best deals before they are ALL gone.
Thankfully, for those of us who don’t like crowds, Cyber Monday was invented.
This may seem like a lot to do, eat, and buy. Let me remind you. It’s important to remember the original intent of the holiday was to give thanks.
Thanksgiving Proclamation of 1789 President George Washington Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be– That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere and humble thanks–for his kind care and protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation–for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of his Providence which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war–for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed–for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted–for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.
One of the great commandments is to give thanksgiving to God, for all He has done for us.
Psalms 100:4  Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. Let’s show thanksgiving to God.
Remember Him The first way to show true thanksgiving to God is to always remember Him. Remembering Him means that He is a part of our thoughts, words, and deeds.
Recognize His Hand To give Thanksgiving to God we recognize His hand in our lives. What blessings has he given to you? Think of your life, health, home, city, and country. Ask yourself what, exactly, about your home or country is a blessing?
Give Thanksgiving in Prayer Prayer, talking to God, thanking Him for all our blessings. Lord, forgive me for focusing more on the negatives in my life than the positives. Thank You for Your blessing of love, grace, mercy, and eternal life. Fill my heart with Your spirit this Thanksgiving and all days so I can be thankful. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Repent of Sins Repentence is one of the most powerful ways in which we can show Him our gratitude
Obey His Commandments Serve Others Have an Attitude of Gratitude Choose to Be Humble
Come, ye thankful people, come,
Raise the song of harvest home;
All is safely gathered in,
Ere the winter storms begin;
God our Maker doth provide
For our wants to be supplied;
Come to God’s own temple, come,
Raise the song of harvest home.
All the world is God’s own field,
Fruit unto His praise to yield;
Wheat and tares together sown,
Unto joy or sorrow grown;
First the blade, and then the ear,
Then the full corn shall appear:
Lord of harvest, grant that we
Wholesome grain and pure may be.
For the Lord our God shall come,
And shall take His harvest home;
From His field shall in that day
All offenses purge away;
Give His angels charge at last
In the fire the tares to cast;
But the fruitful ears to store
In His garner evermore.
Even so, Lord, quickly come,
Bring Thy final harvest home;
Gather Thou Thy people in,
Free from sorrow, free from sin,
There, forever purified,
In Thy garner to abide;
Come, with all Thine angels come,
Raise the glorious harvest home.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus


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