To new traditions this Thanksgiving

Published 3:49 pm Wednesday, November 22, 2017

A few days ago, I asked my wife how we wanted to spend Thanksgiving. This year we won’t have friends or family visiting, and I’ll spend part of the holiday covering some of the many events where people are giving back here in Troup County.

It’ll be the first Thanksgiving we’ve spent here, and I’m looking forward to all of the holiday traditions in Troup County. The Turkey Trot, the first event I’m covering today, will likely be under way or over by the time many of you read this column. It’s going to be a fun day.

But, I asked Alyssa how we wanted to spend the rest of Thanksgiving Day because it’s going to be a bit different, in a good way. Our daughter is still brand new to this world — just over four months old — so she won’t remember it, but this is our first major holiday with her in our lives.

We want to make sure we do it right. So, we started trying to come up with a holiday tradition. Should we be boring and just cook a turkey? Should we watch a particular Christmas movie every year? Do we come up with something unique that we do every year just on Thanksgiving?

Do we stick with traditions from each side of our family?

Since they aren’t huge fans of turkey, her family always celebrates with a big roast, which is perfect after a few hours in the crock pot. The highlight of their meal is mashed potatoes, which are really just an excuse to pile a pound of gravy on their plate.

My parents always cook ham, although turkey is usually part of the meal too. We always finished with mom’s homemade cake — usually chocolate or red velvet. We’d turn on the Lions’ game during lunch, and then watch my Cowboys as a family that evening. With all that said, we’re not planning to cook a big meal today. We’ll throw something together, and knowing my wife, I’m sure it’s going to be delicious. And I’m sure the Cowboys game will be on TV Thursday afternoon. Outside of that, who knows.

Whatever we end up doing each year as a family, I guess that’ll be the start of our tradition. After much discussion, we realized no matter how much you try, you can’t really plan something into a tradition. Not the good ones anyway. Those just happen.

I do know one thing we’ll do though, and we’ll do it every year. We’ll take a few minutes — somewhere between the second helping of food and the Cowboys taking the field — to be thankful for everything we have. That’s what the day is truly about.