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The Rocket Flame

Customs of Thanksgiving

Megan Rummel, Staff

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Outside, the leaves have fallen: their colors have changed to red, yellow, and orange. The air has a cool brisk feeling and as you go inside the house, the aroma of the food occupies the dining room as mom and dad, grandmas and grandpas, aunts and uncles, and cousins converge at the dinner table. The diversity of food loads the table to the point where there is no table left to be seen. It is that time of the year where family comes together and spends quality time with one another, the holiday where people give thanks for what they have.

 

According to History.com, the first Thanksgiving came about when “passengers from Plymouth, England boarded on a ship called, the Mayflower.” The article stated that they wanted to “travel to the new world where there would be new opportunities.” Once the settlers landed, they made alliances with other tribes that were also on the land. The alliances would “eventually help them with their crops.” Finally, in November, they celebrated their “successful feast with their alliances” that would later be called the First Thanksgiving.

 

There are quite a number of things families do on Thanksgiving. Families either stay at home and have people over, go to houses of friends and family, or even travel to different cities, states, or to different countries. The main idea is that families try to get together and spend time with each other.

 

Thanksgiving is now a tradition that Americans follow. It has been around for over 400 years. Now families have their own traditions that they follow during the holidays. Mr. Troy Hillwig (Faculty) Emily Horst (9) and Janiece Grove (12) explain their experiences during Thanksgiving.

 

Normally, we get together with my parents and siblings for a feast on Thanksgiving Day,” Mr. Troy Hillwig (Faculty) explains. “My family also likes to get together with our best friends over the break and share stories. Although, for the first time ever, this year we are spending Thanksgiving Day in the Outer Banks!”

 

We usually toss the old pigskin around,” Hilwig said. “We also might throw in a game or two of Uno for money. Finally, there is usually a bit of football played and watched. ”

 

“We would all sit downstairs and watch Macy’s Thanksgiving day parade, with my grandma, while my parents would start making dinner,” Horst explains.

 

“We would also help with some of the dinner such as peeling potatoes and ripping the bread for stuffing,” said Emily Horst (9). “After we finished eating we would help clean up and play card games. Some games that we play would be Phase 10, Dominoes, Uno and Jenga.”

 

“My family goes to my aunt’s house for the Thanksgiving meal at lunchtime,” Janiece Grove (12) said. “We always turn on the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade while we are getting ready. After the meal we always look at Black Friday deals, tell hunting stories, and the boys play football.”

 

Everyone has that specific food that they like to eat during Thanksgiving. Mashed potatoes and gravy, turkey, stuffing, corn, cranberry sauce, rolls, pickled eggs and beets, and pies for dessert. There are numerous options to choose from.

“My favorite is the mashed potatoes because my dad makes the best ever! There is no other mashed potatoes that tastes that good,” Horst said.  

 

“I love the stuffing. It is my grandmother’s recipe and she always makes it perfectly!” Grove said.

 

“I have to go with stuffing,” Hillwig said.

 

“There are two types of stuffing: wet and dry. The one thing about stuffing is that it has to have gravy on it. Every time I had stuffing, it was perfect every time,” said Hillwig.

 

There are different rationales on why people celebrate Thanksgiving: to become closer with family or finally have a chance to relax and enjoy all of the things treasured in life.

 

“Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate and be thankful for what we have been given,” Grove said.  For my family and I, celebrating Thanksgiving is our way of really acknowledging all that the Lord has provided for us.”

 

“I am most thankful for love, from God, family, church family, friends, because life is meaningless without love.” said Grove.

 

“Thanksgiving is a time to spend with your family, getting to bond with them, and giving thanks to things that we would usually overlook. The environment is very fun, warming and everyone just gets along so well. It’s one of my favorite times of the year where my family is all together and we all get to celebrate together,” Horst explains.

 

I think we celebrate Thanksgiving because it’s a time of thanks and for everything to be at peace. I am thankful for my family, pets, teachers, friends. Pretty much everyone that I look up to. ”

— Emily Horst

 

           “First, it is a tradition. I can remember travelling to Western Pennsylvania as a child and celebrating Thanksgiving,” Hillwig said. “Thanksgiving is a day to give thanks for the all the wonderful things we have; frankly a lot of places around the world do not have the same opportunities and amenities as we do.”

 

“I feel so thankful and blessed to have a beautiful wife and two amazing children.  I am thankful for my wife and kids and our health. I am not uber thankful for the dog, Crosby.  However, I am not going to hold a grudge. And I will do my best to make him a part of the family.”

 

November 23 is one day where families and friends come closer together to share their love and gratitude. Even though people have different activities they do on Thanksgiving, in the end, they all have similar reasons why they celebrate Thanksgiving.

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