Whether your family celebrates with ham or turkey – or the vegetarian equivalent; with family, friends, serving others in a shelter or hospital, or alone with the Parade and the Dog Show on the television, there is one aspect of Thanksgiving that each celebration has in common. Nope, it’s not the pumpkin pie; it’s gratitude.
As the name implies, the fourth Thursday of every year is set aside as one day to recognize those things which we have achieved or been given; and people whom we’ve met and shared a smile, a conversation or our lives.
“Nothing is more honorable than a grateful heart” ~ Seneca
In the classic Peanuts cartoon, “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving,” the gang decides to gather for their celebration at Charlie Brown’s house. Linus, of course, shares the origin of the holiday, noting that the Pilgrims were grateful for what little they did have.
Although they squabble about what constitutes a “real” Thanksgiving, the gang ultimately gives thanks for their friendships – over a “feast” of jellybeans and toast.
“He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.” ~Epictetus
With the days surrounding Thanksgiving counted among the most heavily traveled days in this country, it is evident that people yearn to keep with the tradition of gathering with family and friends to celebrate the holiday.
In generations past, people settled closer to their birthplaces, making a Thanksgiving family reunion easier to plan and attend. With the current trend of career-influenced transfers, retirement to faraway states and more, the home-and-hearth tradition is increasingly difficult.
“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was ‘thank you,’ that would suffice.” ~Meister Eckhart
Technology has made “gathering” more flexible. Skype, conference calls and the like may not have everyone physically in the same room (or even the same Time Zone!), but warms the heart and fills the need for keeping loved ones close.
“Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you’ll never have enough.” ~ Oprah Winfrey
And modern Thanksgiving celebrations are a true melting pot of friends, neighbors, colleagues and more, bound by the sense of tradition and the need to share the holiday with others.
“We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.” ~ Thornton Wilder
Each Windsong active retirement community was designed to help Boomers cultivate new friendships, with walkable streets and a private fitness center in the clubhouse, and neighbors with similar life-stage experiences, allowing for entire communities to forge new bonds and celebrate Thanksgiving in a whole new way.
What’s more, each Windsong community features home designs that maximize accessibility, minimize hassles and provide opportunities to enjoy an active lifestyle without sacrificing style or luxury, and that make entertaining easy and enjoyable.
Happy Thanksgiving, and welcome home to Windsong – Where Life’s A Breeze!