I hope that all of you are out there reading this either waiting for your Thanksgiving Dinner or after having stuffed yourself to the limit. If you didn’t get to spend the Thanksgiving Holiday with your family, I hope you have (had) a great day anyway.
If you are fortunate enough to have had the time off to enjoy with your family, be very Thankful. Don’t take any day that you are alive for granted.
That said I will admit that Holidays stress me out. Mostly because I see time as the only thing in life I can never get back, and Holidays are where I end up wasting the most time for the least benefit.
For the people that spent hours in traffic to see their family, that is time you never get back. The really smart ones made the trip worthwhile somehow. When I was a kid we had a family van and my parents played games with us in the back. One drove, one played and this was before seat belt laws of course. For my parents even the drive was part of our “family time”.
While I really enjoy the company of friends and family, I would rather work today and spend a nice quiet weekday with them instead. Less traffic, less fuss. Admittedly, this is hard to do, since most people I know work a pretty typical Monday – Friday.
My wife on the other hand really enjoys the energy created by the Holiday Season and really feeds off of it. She is a great balance for me this time of year. Her enthusiasm for the season keeps me having fun and helps me forget about the stress.
The one tradition that has always been true for me is that I don’t shop on Thanksgiving or “Black Friday”. That is just way to much time wasted for too little return. I saw people camped out Wednesday to get a TV or $199 that was $499 today. Camping out, and missing time with family and friends to save $300? That is a little much for me.
In the 1980’s I worked part time at Macy’s while finding my way in life. They didn’t decorate until Black Friday. Technically they decorated Thanksgiving day so they were ready on Friday. It was drilled into me to respect the Holidays in the order they occurred.
This year Macy’s was among the first to hang the Christmas decorations and change their tunes. My wife works there now and it is very different from what I remember. I refused to buy anything from any stores who decorated early this year. It was the toughest year yet. Just about everyone had decorations up after Halloween. Thanksgiving is as important today than any other time. The star hold out this year was Nordstrom. They posted a nice sign about not decorating until Thanksgiving was over.
This year, I will definitely make an extra effort to do two things, 1. Shop a small business, because after all, I own one, and 2. Shop Nordstrom, because they respected Thanksgiving at least one more year than anyone else. I hope you will join me in these two small statements while making your holiday purchases.
Today, where ever you go, smile, enjoy the time that will never be had again, even if the best you can do is a phone call to a friend. If you weren’t able to be there and wanted to, start your plan today so next year can be different.
If you are working today, Thank You for being there.