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“Would you give up Thanksgiving with your family for $10,000?”

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Friday, November 20, 2020

That was a survey question years ago and I was surprised at the number of respondents that said “NO.” The same question could be asked this year not in terms of money but health and safety.

Note that the question referred to that ONESPECIFIC DAY. It wasn’t like you would give up seeing them forever for 10K. For me it was a no brainer. Heck yes! Look what I could do for my family with that money. If I wanted to splurge, I could even take them all to Paris on some alternate date and be very “thankful” for the opportunity.

I checked with DH and our children and they agreed with me. They didn’t think I would be abandoning them for money. Maybe our response was influenced by the fact that my father-in-law always had to work on Thanksgiving. The following weekend was “their” Thanksgiving regardless of when the country celebrated.

Then there’s the conflicting family traditions when children leave home and start their own families. If extended family live in different states, decisions must be made.

There have always been different challenges and stressors in our lives.
This cartoon notes one of them in lighthearted way.
The sad part is that I’ve saved it from a magazine in the 1970s!

That survey memory was triggered by a recent article
“Getting Rid of the Holiday Travel Calendar” (link at the end)

It seems that COVID has prompted a lot of rethinking of what’s really important. Is it about celebrating a particular defined day or do we just want to BE together with family and friends sometime, somewhere, somehow?

2020 has been stressful enough without the added health uncertainty of a multigenerational family group in close quarters indoors in the winter.

While we remain hopeful, it may be a long time before normal travel and family gatherings return.
Perhaps even “Christmas in July?” We did that when DH returned from Vietnam. That was a stressful year too.

Just before my cousin’s birthday I advised her to skip a family birthday party. Better to focus on staying alive for next year’s celebration. She was still attending rehab sessions for her back. They were really helping and she felt great. Until she didn’t. She died just before Easter.

Stay safe, stay well.

Hmm, Spark will not allow me to post the link (too long perhaps?)
If interested just google
"the case for getting rid of the holiday travel calendar"

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    CD26493553 agreed, with toxic family, take the money and run.
    DARLENEK04, you are not the only one whose 'friends' don't have time to stop.
    SCDALYNCH and PHEBESS have celebrated the way we used to.

    The money doesn't matter to me. I would welcome the time with some family.

    51 days ago
    After all the numerous deaths in the family that all occured from October 30th to January 15th and the loss of my husband a week before Thanksgiving in 2001 was the one that made my sons and I not want to celebrate all the holidays anymore. Celebrating with all the death anniversaries mixed in just brings more heartache. With the last few years of struggling financially I would definitely go for the 10K. I am sorry for the loss of your cousin.
    53 days ago
  • LGRIF22
    I believe in celebrating almost any special day as much as I can, but I'm not hung up on a specific day. This year, it's come down to having one son and his family for Thanksgiving dinner. The rest of our children have their own plans. I try to be flexible for our married children (all 5) and their families. And in-laws.
    Several years ago, when my mother was still alive (wow...she's been gone 10 years..is that possible?), my hubby and I went skiing, came home, picked up my mom and met some of our kids at a buffet. It was one of my favorite Thanksgivings!
    Family time is all the time! Whenever we can get together! We even love getting together, even traveling, with my husband's siblings as much as possible. They each have big families as well. We're there for each other and if needed, we'd drop what we're doing to help each other.
    Enjoy your Thanksgiving whenever and wherever you can...just remember to be safe and wear your masks for now!
    53 days ago
    Interesting question. My first inclination was to say yes. It is just ONE DAY. What does it matter in this day and age? Then I remembered growing up. We always had Thanksgiving at my grandma's house every year. The whole family would show up. Some from out of town, most who lived in town. My grandma had a way of keeping everyone together in those days. Family importance in a time before cell phones, before internet, before zoom, before being able to take the time off work easily when you had a family get-together. I do remember that my father was a truck driver and sometimes had difficulty getting time off for Thanksgiving. When I think of those days, I truly miss those family members. Most of which have passed away now. Some of which I would have no idea where to even begin looking for them. When grandma died, the family just drifted apart. No one was the same anymore. Some cousins stopped speaking even. How sad is that?
    I could never be like my grandma. She was a loving, very generous person. She is deeply missed.
    But no, if I KNEW for certain that I could spend Thanksgiving Day, somehow, with my family this year, I would take that over the $10,000 any day. Even one day can make lasting memories.
    Before I get blasted for not thinking of Covid, there are still ways to celebrate Thanksgiving safely.
    53 days ago

    Comment edited on: 11/22/2020 6:28:01 PM
    There was a time when I would've said I would give up Thanksgiving with my family for 10K but after I started working full-time as a writer and had a health scare, I realized that it wasn't an inheritance that Fritzy wanted me to leave him with, it was the time spent with me that was important to him. He wanted me around and the love and memories we shared...not endless toys. I had always spent thousands of dollars on toys and clothes and vacations etc. his whole life and it never did much to impress him, but when I actually started spending quality time with him, that's what meant something to him. Because I always noticed on his school projects he would put what he loved most about mom was the hugs she gave him. That's what's important in life is time spent together and memories made. Not how much money we make. In my opinion anyway. Cool blog! A nice thing to think about. emoticon emoticon
    54 days ago
    54 days ago
    Two at the table for Thanksgiving and Christmas (unless you count the cats!).
    54 days ago
  • THINCPL2004
    I for one would be a yes. My career i work most Thanksgivings anyway so my family would be down with it! Stay safe!
    54 days ago
  • ELSCO55
    Be safe and healthy
    54 days ago
    Thanksgiving will be just me and husband. It’s just not worth risking anyone’s life. We’ll have a Zoom visit with daughters. Love ONEKIDSMOM’s comment, “Love doesn’t really have a calendar, does it?” Being thankful isn’t limited to one day emoticon either.
    54 days ago
    We are celebrating on Sunday so family can do their on thing on Thursday with their extended families.
    Happy Thanks giving emoticon
    54 days ago
  • no profile photo RACHNACH
    54 days ago
    I understand that everyone misses family, but it is irresponsible to travel for Thanksgiving! You could spread Covid to everyone you come in contact with after your family feast. Every generation has made sacrifices for the greater good - why does it seem too hard for so many people? Have we become that selfish?
    54 days ago
    Family celebrations can always be delayed...
    Stay safe and healthy!
    Ps. Thanks for the goodie!
    54 days ago
  • THOMS1
    I would take the 10,000. Not being selfish but there is a lot of g emoticon ood that could be done with that money. This year due to covid we will not have a family gathering at all.
    54 days ago
  • no profile photo CD4114015
    You always post wonderful blogs but they get better with each blog... emoticon emoticon
    54 days ago
    54 days ago
  • no profile photo CD26493553
    My family is toxic, so I’d skip Thanksgiving for free! Lol
    54 days ago
    I would rather use the money to treat others to a good day my family is far to s[read out to get together anyway
    54 days ago
  • ALICIA363
    emoticon emoticon
    54 days ago
  • ALICIA363
    emoticon emoticon
    54 days ago
    choices. we all have to make them.
    54 days ago
  • 8HABIT
    My sister lives 650 miles away. Her husband and her called us and the four of us had a great time over the phone for over an hour. It was like being there plus we were all safe in our homes. Technology is great!
    55 days ago
    I think holidays brings out the family gatherings coz everyone is sooooo busy ... or think they are. Holidays also brings days off from work ... so the thought is you have more time to get together.

    We saw our local kids last week for "Thanksgiving". So, the actual day will be "just" me and Hubby.

    Christmas will be ... "just" me and Hubby. The weather will not permit an outside gathering and an inside get together does not seem sensible under the COVID explosion here in the Rockies.

    It's not the day ... it's the heart that brings us together.
    55 days ago
  • UPTOIT59
    We haven't seen our children and grandchildren for over a year and I would still take the money so I could visit when we can again without worrying about the money! Not to put money before family but for just one day I could do it. We are doing it now for Covid- money would be a much positive reason! lol emoticon
    55 days ago
  • no profile photo INCH_BY_INCH
    Why is every getting so emotional about these secular holidays? I would think family is important every single day of the year. I do NOT need a calendar to remind me if family holds a place in my life. We need a government to define a date,religiously affictation to tell us we need a day off, seriously, Take the emotion out of it. Let's deal with what is beyond our control and this will pass too.
    55 days ago
    It's just my son and I and he lives at home (great relationship we have too) so yep I'll be doing Thanksgiving - that said I know in a lot of my Facebook groups there is a lot of mumbling that Thanksgiving will go on as planned
    55 days ago
  • MAREE1953
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    55 days ago
    55 days ago
  • RHOOK20047
    This will be a strange holiday for sure. It is sad as for the year we have had a good family celebration would really be nice.
    55 days ago
    Syaying home
    55 days ago
    Wishing you and everyone a blessed Thanksgiving no matter the circumstances. We all have someone or something to be thankful for and being thankful is what it's all about. So, I'm thankful for my loved ones and all of you. God bless us all.
    55 days ago
  • LIS193
    With family all over the globe, it is hard to get together even in “normal “ times. So when we do see each other it doesn’t matter what the date is, we enjoy being together and treasure our times together.
    This year it will be FaceTime again even though we now live in the same continent. We moved to be closer and then COVID happened...
    Stay safe and well
    55 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    55 days ago
    The cartoon maybe too true.
    55 days ago
    For us, this will be the first Thanksgiving without Danny, but also the first Thanksgiving *with* Henry's sweetheart, who is doing most of the cooking. Change is inevitable.
    55 days ago
    Yes, I would take the money. In my family, we rarely celebrate anything on 'the' day. Stay safe.
    55 days ago
    sorry for your loss just a table for three this year and thats okay we will be safe
    55 days ago
    I am with Jan (2BDynamic)............I got tired of doing all the running. My sis in law does not drive very
    far, she freaks in traffic, none of my nephews/niece ever come see us, we used to drive up to either my
    daughters' or sons' for the holidays, alternating who we stayed with. No one except my son ever came to
    see us...he made 3 trips down here.........we have another kid in Wyoming who never contacts us, the only
    time in 17 years was to ask for money we didn't have............the other one is now stationed in Israel, the
    last girl is on the East Coast and came down last year.........
    So I would say I'll take the money and thank you very much. Not one person I was close too has ever
    come by for coffee or a few minutes on their way to the coast........my oldest friend used to go to Florida
    every year for winter, never once stopped.........another very close friend and her hubs drive down to their
    new home in lower Alabama every month or so, within 50 miles of us and don't call ahead to say meet.....
    so I said the heck with all of them.
    55 days ago
    We all want to stay safe. My family lived in serval states and yet we managed to be together for each and every holiday. This year is very different. We see each other on Zoom. My #1 son has the sight for his business which I am thankful for. Some days the phone rings off the wall taking to both family and friends. We all have to go alone with the times.
    55 days ago
    Powerful and timely blog.

    Canadian Thanksgiving was last month and no: we couldn't have our usual family gathering.

    And we don't think it will be possible to get together for Christmas either, in person.

    We don't love our family any the less for coming to that decision.

    We love them and want them to be healthy for many many more years. They feel the same way about us.
    55 days ago
    I couldn't give up seeing my family at our summer location - I refer to it as "the center of my personal universe." Thanksgiving is a wrench, but not as much as giving up the cottage would be.
    55 days ago
    Sorry for your loss, I think we should be glad for each day, celebrations are a way to remember others always a good thing :). With DD and family so far a way that $10, 000 would mean a lot of hugs in person for me!!!
    55 days ago
    Being former military and thinking my leave time was precious! While my brother was in a coma and being considered brain dead I decided not to go home on emergency leave until he was going to be pronounced dead, we had no idea how long he would be on life support. My mother said okay, she had no problem with that decision. If I had it all to do over that would be the one do over I would ask for.
    During COVID that is slightly different!
    55 days ago
  • HOLLYM48
    We will not be getting together with my extended family this year for the holidays. As sad as I am that I won't be seeing my siblings and parents, knowing that we are doing the safest, smartest thing at this time, I know that God willing, we will have other holidays to spend together. This too shall pass. I would love the $10,000 to spend at a different time with each family member.
    Have a lovely weekend!
    55 days ago
  • no profile photo CD4114015
    It's usually hubby and I and we actually like it that way! Hope you have the happiest Thanks Giving yet!
    55 days ago
    Yes. Won't be with mine this year. Stay safe. Zoom calls and Facetime work well.
    55 days ago
    Thanksgiving at my house in these last 25 years or so has not been just family. My family is all in different states - Maryland, Pennsylvania, New York, Texas, Florida, California, Tennessee. There are only 4 here in this area now. So at Thanksgiving I invite any people I know that have no place to go for Thanksgiving. These last years have not been very many. Sometimes it is not on the date but that weekend. So I guess the money would be good and I could help others in a more needed way!

    Very interesting idea!!
    55 days ago
    When I lived in the USVI, it never made sense to spend a day flying "home" for Thanksgiving, spending 2 days there, then flying back so I could get to work on Monday. So I always had a Thanksgiving potluck with other people who also didn't have family on island. I'd make the turkey and dressing, and everyone else would make whatever their specialty was. I also lived in a one-room studio apartment, but I had a large covered porch and picnic table, so I hosted many Thanksgivings out there.

    So yeah, I'd take that $10K. That way, I could fly my family down to stay with me (and later with us, after I married DH) for Chanukah!!!
    55 days ago
    Thanks for the "link" to the article! It was easy to google, and the author made good points. I miss my parents, who are gone, as are my aunts and uncles, so family has shrunk for me and my husband. We're fortunate to have my brother and sister-in-law nearby as our bubble. So the 4 of us are having an easier nontraditional steak dinner. I think we're all relieved to give up the big "to do."
    55 days ago
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