Thanksgiving, or Thanksgiving Day as it is called by many is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November each year. It is positioned at the end of the harvest season and is an annual Federal Holiday to express thanks for one’s material and spiritual possessions.
The period from Thanksgiving Day through to New Years Day is often called the holiday season in America.
One of the most important holidays in the United States in Thanksgiving. This day involves family getting together from all over the country and world for a time of special communion and togetherness.
In addition to this family time, there are numerous activities and traditions which go along to make this day one of the most eventful days of the entire year. In fact, because of this importance, all offices are closed for at least the Thursday of Thanksgiving and the Friday after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday. Many schools also have the Wednesday before Thanksgiving off, in order for students to travel home to visit their families during this time.
For most Americans, the main attraction of this last Thursday in November is the large selection of high quality food cooked up by members of the family.
While the most famous Thanksgiving food item is turkey, there are several other food items such as the following which are always present at the dinner table when this holiday comes around:
- Cranberry Sauce
- Dinner Rolls : these are the classic bread item for Thanksgiving.
- Steamed vegetables: usually there is a range of vegetables available, such as carrots, peas, green beans, lima beans, and zucchini.
- Corn of the cob. Often steamed as well, this dish dates back to the original Thanksgiving between the English settles in Massachusetts and the Native Americans of the land.
- Apple pie. Truly a classic American dessert, apple pie is often served with vanilla ice cream and whipped cream.
- Pumpkin pie. Since pumpkins are in season during this time of year, it is traditional to use all the excess pumpkins to make pies. Also, the seeds are extracted and often baked and seasoned, making for a nice snack food.
- Baked potatoes. Potatoes are a main staple of the American diet, and this variety of potato is a classic Thanksgiving food. Served with butter, sour cream, chives, bacon bits, cheese, and salt and pepper.
- Salad. A mixed salad is often a healthy choice on the dinner table. Vegetables usually included are lettuce, cabbage, tomatoes, green peppers, and corn.
The large number of choices makes this dinner a very enjoyable one to take part in.
One of the traditions of American Thanksgiving is to make too much food. Even with ten or more family members gathering to observe this holiday, those who are cooking always make far too much. The extra food is packed and saved as leftovers, and eaten for days or weeks to come after the holiday.
It Won’t Be Long
Even though the Thanksgiving holidays are shorter than most would like, it is usually not long before the family meets again for Christmas. In fact, from Thanksgiving until the end of the year is considered to be “the holiday season,” with many family members getting together during this time. The Monday after Thanksgiving, everyone is back to work for a few weeks before the Christmas and New Year holidays in December.