thanks, but no thanks.

By Posted in - general on November 20th, 2014 2 Comments

Thanksgiving is such a time of temptation for me.  And it’s not just the food, y’all.

Let’s face it, our culture has done an excellent job creating approximately a bajillion distractions and things to stress and worry over during the holiday season.  When you combine all the visiting family members, the responsibility of large meal preparation, and the freak show that is known as “Black Friday,” it can be easy to lose sight of what Thanksgiving is really supposed to be about. I, especially, have a tendency to sell out.

But this year, I have begun the inner conversation (battle) early with myself, trying to just stay focused on the things that really matter. I am going to TRY to choose – day by day – to not get “consumed by the consumerism” of the season and do something just flat out crazy: relax and be thankful. So to all the anxiety… to all the fluff… to all the cut-dinner-with-my-family-short-so-I-can-get-punched-in-the-face-by-some-rabid-soccer-mom-in-the-toy-aisle-at-Target-because-they-can’t-wait-12-more-hours-to-buy-things-they-dont-need…

Thanks, but no thanks.


I will be honest though: It is gonna be hard and I am probably not gonna be very good at it.  Peacefulness/thankfulness = not my wheelhouse.  I am more the franticly cleaning, last minute cooking, elbow-throwing-in-the-gravy-aisle type.  But I am going to try to go cold turkey (pun intended) on my old neurotic “house must be perfect, food must be perfect, life must be perfect” ways and Choose Present Over Perfect this Thanksgiving.

Now, before we get too carried away and I try to flat out lie to you… I am absolutely positive that I will still freak out and put Christmas decorations up before Thanksgiving gets here (because I love sparkles and lights and I just want them.) FULL DISCLOSURE: It will hands-down still look like Santa threw up in my home by next week.

However, I am hopeful that I will not go completely crazy.  I really want to try to tone down the preparation and expectation of it all so I can actually sit around the table with my family and enjoy the NOW.  Because y’all, I have better things to do with my time when my darling family is here than mix up 8 casseroles and wash dishes the whole time.  There are stories to tell and babies to kiss and spicy red wines to drink, Amen.

So I have created the following plan of action to accomplish this great feat:

  • Instead of planning some big huge meal and creating a spreadsheet regarding the timing and temperature of cooking it all in one little tiny oven, I have done myself (and my family) a big favor and paid someone else to fry me up a turkey, so all I have to do is heat that beautiful bird back up.
  • There will, however, be mashed potatoes and stuffing and they will be my homemade secret recipes (HELLO, I am not completely uncivilized – I would NEVER compromise the stuffing and taters.)
  • I don’t bake and the good people at Whole Foods do. So VOILA, bring on the store-bought pies.
  • I have a sister-in-law that can cook those veggie casseroles like a champ.
  • I have a mother-in-law that can bring the magical cheeseball we all demand at every family gathering.
  • And I know this is near blasphemy in the hospitality-snob south, but I am just going to say it: I am using those deep dish, extra sturdy Chinet paper plates too.  GASP!!! I KNOW.

We have ourselves a meal, folks.

So I don’t know what this Thanksgiving season has in store for you (awkward family conversations? bad jello salads? too much travel? too little rest?) but I hope that somewhere along the way, you too can overcome the temptation to make it something it was never meant to be.  Instead, may your Thanksgiving truly be a season of blessings and giving thanks.

Here’s wishing you many stories to tell, babies to kiss, and spicy red wines to drink, Amen.

What are you thankful for this year?
How can you Choose Present Over Perfect this hectic holiday season?

Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift! 2 Corinthians 9:15
“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” ~ G.K Chesterton 






  • Craig - Reply

    November 20, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    Christine, I just wanted to let you know that I thoroughly enjoy reading your messages, . You always lift my spirit, my attitude, my outlook on life . Please keep up the excellent work. Looking forward to the next article. Sincerely, Craig Christensen.

  • Teresa - Reply

    November 21, 2014 at 6:54 pm

    Love your Thanksgiving story and I will enjoy making those famous cheese balls ! Maybe Ashton will come up with a new song about it and face time us from Oklahoma.

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