Imagine. A candle lit table decorated to perfection to be the perfect backdrop for the delectable turkey in the center, surrounded by the goodness of buttered stuffing and mashed potatoes, gravy, and all the goodness to come with the Thanksgiving dinner.
The joy of the moment comes, when dinner is finally ready to be consumed and the family sits together and gives thanks. Each person then shares something that they are truly thankful for.
We eat until our stomachs can’t take it any more while we carry on in conversation. But in a sudden turn of events, someone brings it up.
As soon as this is mentioned, conversation leads to what stores are having sales. The newspaper comes out with all the coupons, and in an instant, our beautiful moment of giving thanks turns into a conversation of how we will consume items on Black Friday all in the name of Christmas.
I will take the blame.
Three years ago, I went to the dark side. I woke up at 2am, got my three girls out of bed, and we waited in line at JCPENNEY. Upon the doors opening, we ran to the back of the store, along with other crazed and deranged shoppers, to purchase boots for $15 a pair. Like panicked monkeys, we raced around to purchase everything we wanted to buy for others, and a whole lot more. I spent more money on that Black Friday in a mad frenzy of spending, than any other Christmas.
The next year came and the conversation of Black Friday began once again at dinner. My children and family, now distracted with sales, turned our dinner table into strategic planning for “Operation Black Friday”, building strategies and planning attacks of where to go in the wee hours of the morning.
Last year, I stopped being a believer in Black Friday and rebelled and I said enough with the madness. I told my family we couldn’t bring up the topic until after dinner was over. However, even before dessert was served, the conversation snuck in.
Thanksgiving can be a great time to reflect on the wonderful gifts that God has given us. I have always cherished Thanksgiving, and would say it’s been one of my most favorite days in the year. But now, I am afraid Black Friday is robbing my Thanksgiving. Now, there are stores in our area opening on Thursday night, to entice the shopper to hurry up their Thanksgiving dinner to go out and spend money. This means all the employees who work for these stores, get to eat their Thanksgiving dinner, and drive off to work so people like me can shop in a mad frenzy to buy things we don’t necessarily need.
I don’t want to get judgmental of all my friends and my family who love Black Friday deals. After all, I have participated in it and I get it. There is a thrill in the SALE, and I know there are a lot of people that depend on these sales to help assist in their budget.
My mom once owned an amazing gift store, and I remember getting up early on Black Friday, to help her with all the holiday shoppers looking for a bargain. Retail stores depend on this day to carry them through the year. Our economy depends on consumers spending.
However, I am personally done with BLACK FRIDAY interfering with my Thanksgiving Thursday. This year, if you come to my house, I will not allow that word to be discussed at the table or on this day. I will encourage everyone to do their strategic planning for Black Friday on Wednesday or something.
I am so disappointed that many stores are opening on Thanksgiving. In a culture that struggles with materialism, we once again have taken one more step away from a day that can be filled with reflecting on the beautiful gifts God has given all of us, to now ending our Thanksgiving day with a big shopping extravaganza to catch all the sales. Does anyone see an issue with this?
I thought about posting a list of stores that are opening on Thanksgiving and challenging my friends to boycott these stores. But the list was so long and included stores I like to shop at for my regular Christmas purchases so I just gave up. Instead, I will just say, please, please, choose family on Thursday. Please look at your kids and your loved ones, and tell them they are more important than any deals you can get Thursday night. Snuggle with your little ones until they go to sleep, and play games all night long with your older children. Take Thursday as a day to soak up every ounce of love you can receive and give to your loved ones. Savor your family, because they matter far more than any store sale can ever offer.
Specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy
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