It’s hard to find anyone frowning on Thanksgiving, maybe those unfortunate few that have to work. The holiday, filled with family, home cooked food, parades and football, is one most everyone looks forward to. It is a time of year where we need a break, a day to reconnect and fill our bellies with way too much food. The kids have been working hard at school and the days are shorter and colder, the perfect time for a timeout from the daily grind. It’s a day to slow down and take stock of what means the most.
The origin of the American Thanksgiving occurred In Plymouth, Massachusetts, 397 years ago, when Pilgrims and Wampanoag Indians came together to share an autumn harvest feast that actually lasted three days. Turkeys probably weren’t on the table but rather deer and local seafood and vegetables like onions and carrots along with fruit growing in the wild.
The notion of a Thanksgiving holiday became popular during the Revolutionary War and was celebrated as part of military victories for many years. You can thank President Abraham Lincoln for making Thanksgiving a national holiday in 1863. In 1941, Congress ruled that it should be on the 4th Thursday in November.
Our family starts Thanksgiving morning by eating a hearty breakfast while watching the Macy’s Parade. We even bring out the good china for this morning ritual. The first parade was held in 1924 with 400 employees walking a few blocks with live animals. The oversized balloons made their debut in 1927. Now the parade has more than 10,000 participants and some 50 million tune in to watch. The joyful parade scenes make turkey basting and pie baking go by in a jiffy.
Speaking of turkeys, some, 46 million are consumed on Thanksgiving. The average bird weighs about 15 pounds. Interestingly, Founding Father Benjamin Franklin wanted the turkey to be the national bird, instead of the eagle. He did not get his way. The next great debate would be stuffing or dressing. We play it safe and cook the dressing in a separate dish.
The first football game to be played on Thanksgiving was a college game between Yale and Princeton in 1876. The holiday became a popular time for many college and high school championships for years to come. It’s also a big day now for the NFL with three games shown yearly. For us in Texas, the Dallas Cowboys game is the pick for the main TV and for those not interested, there’s plenty of places for a nap.
However your family celebrates the day, we, here at Sports Moms, hope it is one filled with togetherness, favorite foods and conversation about life’s everyday blessings.