As we embark upon our second Thanksgiving in our tiny house in Beaufort, and our second Thanksgiving being able to celebrate gratitude without the craziness of running our business, we are grateful for the opportunity having been business owners, but we are very thankful to not be doing it anymore. Gratitude is definitely richer, now that we take the time to recognize it, and can focus on being thankful, without the clutter of “stuff” and “things” getting in the way.
Thanksgiving is one of those holidays, as non-animal eaters, that runs a fine line of celebration for the actual holiday. It is bittersweet that we enjoy the day of recognizing all that we are blessed to have and experience in our lives, but knowing that many Americans will be circled around a table, waiting to chow down on a bird that lost it’s life so that they could eat it on this day of celebrating all they are grateful for. It’s sort of ironic, and morbid in our opinion. There are many who would disagree with us on that, but you can chalk it up to being thankful for free-thought, I guess.
Both of us come from a background of eating turkeys on Thanksgiving. We are now going on our 6th year of being non-animal eaters, so we have had more holidays of eating meat, than not, but neither of us feel that we are missing something by not having turkey on our table on Thanksgiving.
As we focus on what we are grateful for, we are able to add animals to our list, and the fact that we do not need to exploit them in order to celebrate a holiday. We both have an app on our phone, Gratitude Journal, which prompts you each day to enter one thing you are grateful for. Often it is something that is recognizable, that is evident and has happened recently, but more times than not, it is something we take for granted and state out loud, like, the ability to breathe, the sun shining, clean water, or our life together. We like to use Thanksgiving as a day to consolidate gratitude from the past year. This year, in the spirit of David Letterman, we created a top ten list of gratitude. It is pretty difficult to narrow it down to ten, but here we go:
Gratitude, itself, is a virtue that we seem to be able to live out each day, now that we don’t cling to so many material things in our minimal lifestyle. It seems that we are able to focus on the fundamental aspects of living… and for that, we are grateful. It opens up a new world for us, in which we learn to appreciate more.