A Thanksgiving confession

Okay, here it is – I don’t really like Thanksgiving. There, I said it. I know, it’s terrible and un-American and well, I’m sorry (but only a little bit).

The first problem is that Thanksgiving falls just after Halloween and my daughter’s birthday and right before Christmas. I go all out for those three occasions and just can’t seem to muster the energy for Thanksgiving.

Another problem is that even though I love food and generally like almost everything, on my short list of foods I don’t like: gravy, stuffing, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie. I’m sure you can see the problem there.

So last year, I decided to pass on cooking food I don’t like, cleaning for days and entertaining large groups of people and just get away with the family instead.  Four days off from school and work don’t happen often, so we took advantage of the time off to get out of town.

And, we had our first Thanksgiving dinner out. I thought it would be weird but it was so relaxing – no cooking or cleaning; and my son got to order pasta instead of turkey so he was happy as can be. Here we are, all smiles:

My final issue with Thanksgiving is the waste involved. Luckily, there are many great solutions for making the celebration less wasteful:

  • Buy locally produced and organic foods whenever possible. For information on buying a fresh, local turkey, check out this post at planetgreen.com.
  • Ditch the disposable utensils, plates, napkins or tablecloths. Take this opportunity to break out the good china that has been collecting dust. If you don’t have enough place settings for your guests, here’s an idea that I love from this post entitled  “Put the meaning in greening your Thanksgiving” – ask each guest to bring their own place setting along with a story about the plates. At the table, ask guests to explain what is special about the setting.
    Use the holiday as an opportunity to start composting. Food waste and Thanksgiving just go hand in hand, but you can make better use of that waste by composting. For composting tips and advice, check out my three-part
    blog series on composting.
    Remember to recycle as much as possible. See “
    Can I recycle this” for more tips and advice.
  • For more green Thanksgiving ideas also check out “How to have a tasty vegetarian Thanksgiving “ and “Eco-Friendly Thanksgiving tips”.

So, what do you think? Is there anyone else that doesn’t enjoy this holiday or am I alone here? Am I crazy and missing the boat? Anyone have suggestions for non-traditional ways to spend the day? Are there any unusual Thanksgiving traditions that you have started in your family? I’m still trying to figure out what we are doing this year and would love to hear your ideas.

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