Thanksgiving anyone?

Walked into Target at 8:00 o’clock this morning in search of footed pajamas. Not for me, the high school daughter was seeking the ideal Fall costume to impersonate a teddy-bear toting toddler.

Mind you, classes start at 9 a.m. (The things we do for love!)

The search began at a rack of bright red, one-piece jammies embroidered with smiling Santas. Snowflake cut-outs and red-and-white Christmas ornaments the size of snowballs dangled from the ceilings. Surprisingly absent was the Christmas Muzak I heard a week ago at a grocers.

Anyone else think this is wrong? People, it’s not even All Saints’ Day (that’s Sunday) and already we’ve fast-forwarded to Christmas.

Whatever happened to Thanksgiving — the holiday stores used to promote after Halloween with pilgrim cut-outs, accordion-style turkeys and little Mayflower replicas?  Apparently, Thanksgiving isn’t sexy enough to appear on retail radar anymore – unless it’s part of “after the big meal” football commercials.

I’m not a holiday Scrooge. We crowded ’round the TV last Friday to laugh our way through an AMC pre-Halloween showing of The Blob, the 1958 cult classic with Steve McQueen trying to save a town from a people-eating ball of silicon from outer space.

Christmas is my personal favorite holiday, a chance to relax with the family and consider the ultimate Gift, a Savior. But Thanksgiving is a close second. It’s not about getting or giving. It’s about being thankful for what we have.

Thanksgiving, of course, began with the pilgrims who founded the first Puritan colony in 1620. They nearly died, arriving in Cape Cod at the onset of winter, sick and with little food. Had the Indians native to that place – particularly an English-speaking Squanto — not given them aid, all the pilgrims most likely would have died.

At their first harvest, the pilgrims gave thanks to God for health, strength and lack of want — still good things to be thankful for, anytime of year!

PS.  I highly recommend a visit to Plimouth Plantation, an hour outside Boston, for an historical look at 17th Century pilgrim life. Also, the journal of pilgrim governor William Bradford is a good primary source read.

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