Whether some like it or not, we Americans are more traditional than most realize. Oh, yes we are. It's clearly seen just by the way we go about the calendar year, and I have also seen on numerous YouTube videos from Europeans speaking on America and Americans and noting the differences between us and them.
A single lit candle can
emanate so much atmosphere.
Plus, we give thanks to God (or to whoever, for we do have freedom of religion here) every 4th Thursday in November...honoring and remembering those early Americans who celebrated their first harvest in the New World back in 1621, along with the Natives that helped them.
And then there's Christmas, the most celebrated holiday of the calendar year, where even the most non-celebrant will at least give some acknowledgement to December 25 and, whether they like it or not, will spend a bit of time during the season with family & friends and, whether they admit it or not, will actually have somewhat of a good time (can you say Todd and Margo from National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation?).
And we in my family are right there among the greater majority of Americans who do just the same in fervently celebrating the holiday season.
Oh, we love it!
So, for this week's post I would like to share with you how the Thanksgiving weekend traditions were celebrated in my home in this year of 2019.
And there we are! The healthy ones!
Enjoying our traditional Thanksgiving meal.
|We must be rich, for we had nine candles lit at the same time,|
including one not in this shot~~~~~
Plus, on the wall behind me, the oil lamp was lit as well - - !
My camera is from 2009 and does not always have some of the stronger capabilities that the more up-to-date cameras have now. In fact, my son's phone actually took a few of the following pictures, which turned out very well indeed!
|I absolutely love the way the candle flames were|
captured in the low light of this picture.
|This captured the look nicely.|
Of course, the candles did not make it this bright.
|From colonial to Victorian like * that!|
|My nod to the Victorians such as my own grandparents.|
The Currier & Ives print is an original that came
with the frame that also included a lock of hair in
a blue ribbon, which I left as it was.
|My grandson kept an eye on the pies!|
Pumpkin and apple!
Now, if you were to ask me what my favorite part of Thanksgiving 2019 was, I would have to say having my grandson help me put out the candles.
|He used the snuffer for the candles in the sconces.|
|And blew out the more accessible ones on his own.|
The following day - Black Friday - is a day I normally spend at Greenfield Village. This year it didn't work out for me to do so, so it was decided that Black Friday was going to be blue-ish green with some white thrown in.
Christmas Tree Cutting day!
|There was no snow on the ground in my Detroit suburb, But the |
farther north we traveled, the whiter the ground and trees became.
|Living in the Great Midwest gives me the opportunity to see |
beautiful country views that many only see in photographs.
This lone barn really stood out to me.
|The rolled hay was not too far away.|
|The rolling countryside.|
|There it is: Western's Tree Farm!|
We have been coming to this place to get our Christmas Tree
for 32 years - since 1987!
But perhaps my favorite part of all is the horse and wagon ride out to the trees.
|Here comes the horse-drawn wagon...|
|They do have tractors as well, but we prefer the horses.|
Do you see the treeline wa-ayyy back there? The next picture
shows us going through to the far reaches of the tree farm:
|I'm not sure which type of tree these are, but we strolled past |
them. We prefer the spruces, which are our favorite. We've tried
others but nothing compares to the spruce, in our opinion.
|And there it is - - our tree for 2019:|
a blue spruce!
And it is lightly covered in snow!
|From inside the cabin looking out the window.|
|The group photo was taken in front of the hearth. Jill Western, |
on the left, joined us for our picture, though I have no idea who
the photo-bomb lady in the background is (lol).
a visit to the Village of Lexington (Michigan):
|There's the sign for the General Store as well as the|
one for Wimpy's - two must-stops for us.
|The General Store is right out of the|
late 19th and early 20th century.
|Good greasy burgers with grilled onions, fries, and a Coke |
(well, a Dr. Pepper this time).
The next decade saw a law office, a tailoring business, a doctor's office, and a shop that sold saddles, harnesses, and horse hardware, a general store (not the one there now), and a barbershop.
|The restored Cadillac Hotel from 1860.|
Of course, as the decades rolled on, new and different businesses came and went. Fortunately, as you can see with the Cadillac House, a number of the 19th century buildings are still standing and being utilized.
Beautiful small town Americana.
|Merry Christmas from Lexington, Michigan!|
Now we head into Saturday and Sunday, to the Holly Dickens Festival over in Holly, Michigan (another wonderful Victorian Village), the oldest, longest running Dickens Festival in the United States - 46 years as of 2019.
|The old world Christmas music group I head up, Simply |
Dickens, was back, once again, at the Dickens Festival.
Here they are inside one of the many antique shops that Holly is
so well known for.
|We also perform on the streets in front of businesses as well, and |
we always seem to draw a pretty good and festive crowd.
|Inside a candy and cake shop.|
One of the fun things we like to do is to take some out-of-the-ordinary photos, such as this with what could be three undertakers.
|I heard Scrooge died last night.|
|I like mirror pictures, and Diana was|
perfectly framed in this mirror.
Or maybe she was actually in the mirror!
|Another Diana picture:|
she became a grandma this year for the first time.
And her last name actually is Moses.
And...she also is an art teacher.
It was meant to be.
|Methinks Tom C. is taking this Dickens thing a little too seriously.|
|Posing with the horse and carriage.|
Michelle, the carriage driver I am sitting next to, has been a part
of the Holly Dickens Festival longer than I have, and I began in 1997.
Aside from the illnesses that plagued so many this first week, we made it through and continued on to make the season merry and bright. In fact, one more unfortunate incident occurred before week's end: our Christmas tree toppled over, smashing numerous bulbs, a couple of which we've had since our first Christmas together. The tree was just too big for the stand we had - I should have known better. We tried tying it to the window latch, but I could see the string growing tighter and tighter and probably would have ended up snapping and another tree catastrophe. So I ended up cutting over a foot off the bottom. It is now much smaller but we won't have to worry about it toppling over again. This was a first-time-ever happening for me.
One is never too old to learn from mistakes.
So here is our new modified tree for 2019, which we decorated a few days after the falling:
|At least we were all able to help decorate this time!|
Yes, this is my family, and I love 'em every one!
Not only do we Americans treasure the past more than many realize, but we will have history from other countries sort of become our own past as well. A good example of this is a quote I have from Gerald Charles Dickens, the great great grandson of THE Charles Dickens (who wrote the great "A Christmas Carol"):"The 'Carol' is 10 times more popular in America than it is in England. In England, the 'Carol' is just a story. In America the 'Carol' is Christmas."
Why do you think this is?
I believe it's because of, well, our traditions.
And, yes, a love of the past.
So what better time to have traditions, past and present, than during the Thanksgiving and Christmas season?
Until next time, see you in time.
For more information on the Holly Dickens festival, click HERE
~ ~ ~ ~