Happy Thanksgiving everyone! May your turkey (or tofurkey, if that's how you roll) be plentiful and your tables and counter tops overflow with pies, rolls, potatoes, sweet potatoes, dressing, veggies, and whatever other starchy goodness your family and friends serve up as part of your annual T-day feast.
Currently, I'm hunkered down at Andy's mom's house, watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade (that is to say, I'm watching commercials and commentators, there's very little parading going on) on mute and a special "Thankfulness" edition of a local radio program. Yesterday I baked two pumpkin pies and spent a bit of the afternoon at the church doing prep work for the community Thanksgiving dinner my mother coordinates every year.
The dinner is often confused with being a charity effort, but that isn't the case at all. It's a community dinner. It's a free dinner option for anyone, regardless of their political, religious, or socioeconomic standing who doesn't want the hassle of making the dinner themselves. So yes, there are people who come because they have nowhere else to go, but there are also entire extended families who choose to eat their Thanksgiving dinner in this setting. Delivery and pick-up meals are available for those with limited mobility and we also offer rides to those who want to attend. The tag line for the dinner is "No charge, no sermon."
This community seems not that far from the original (albeit probably mostly mythical) idea of the first Thanksgiving. That is, everyone coming together and bringing something to offer everyone else. However, in 2011, instead of saying, "You bring the squash, I'll bring the corn" it's more like, "you bring the Cool-Whip, I'll bring the (frozen) corn." Every single ingredient for the dinner is donated and the labor that prepares the meal is completely voluntary.
So regardless of how Thankgiving really began, we do seem to agree on what today's all about: coming together, celebrating more than enough to go around, and saying "thank you."