Some of my fondest childhood memories involve time around the dining room table at my grandparents’ house. We were there almost every Sunday after church, as well as Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter. We often spent Saturday evenings there, celebrating a family member’s birthday with a meal and a cake.
The table itself is not special. But what happened each time we gathered around it was.
There is something special that happens when people come together around a table and share a meal. Masks are removed. Pretenses dropped. Community is created. A sense of family is formed.
Traditions are shared. Stories are told. Recipes are exchanged. Even in a world where everyone is increasingly busy, people seem to slow down for that small window of time.
A Time of Thanks
One of my favorite times of year around the table is Thanksgiving. I love it because it’s a holiday that doesn’t revolve around gifts or commercialism, but focuses on being together and being thankful.
And, of course, lots of food – that part is great, too!
I think Thanksgiving is one of the sweetest and best American traditions we can share with our friends from other parts of the world.
We are coming up on our fourth Thanksgiving in Norway (we missed one here in 2015 while in the states). Each year, we have found ways to share Thanksgiving traditions with friends and neighbors here. And each year, more and more people have wanted to be a part of it.
Unfortunately, the table is simply not big enough for us to invite every person we’d like. As of last year, we expanded to two evenings, hosting one in a cafe with friends on Thanksgiving Day, and co-hosting with a local church the following Sunday. And even with that, we continue to have even more people expressing interest in being a part of a Thanksgiving celebration.
It’s a beautiful problem to have – so many people wanting to take an evening to celebrate and be thankful!
So this year, To Be Told has come up with a solution.
The Thankful Table.
The Thankful Table is a simple way to share the spirit and tradition of Thanksgiving with those around you. You don’t have to be American or live in America. You don’t have to eat turkey. It doesn’t have to be fancy.
There are just a few things we ask you to do to join this movement of thankfulness…
- Host a meal during the week of November 20-26 – at your home, at a rented facility, outdoors – wherever you’d like!
- Invite at least one person/family to join you for the meal
- At some point during the meal, find a way for everyone to say something they’re thankful for
- Use the hashtag #thankfultable17 and share about your experience on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or other social media
It’s that simple. It’s about bringing people together, enjoying good food and good conversation, and taking an hour or two to slow down and show gratitude for what we have.
Regardless of where you live or where you come from, we invite you to join the Thankful Table this November. Pick a day, host a meal, and take the time to be thankful.
In the coming weeks, we will share some other ideas on how you can make this happen, including some fun suggestions on how to incorporate item #3 (above) into your meal, and ways to keep your event simple while also making it special.
For now, we’d love to hear from you. Will you join us? Will you be a part of #thankfultable17? Where will you celebrate? Leave a comment here or on our Facebook page and let us know!