Fall is Here!

By Jiun Liao

Fall is here! Christmas is near, and we are starting to decorate the house for Thanksgiving/ Halloween. Our daughter has been talking about wanting to be a ghast from Minecraft for months now, and we’re still racking our brains about how to make this costume.

Our social media feeds are full of recipes and pictures of golden-browned turkeys, root vegetables roasted to perfection, creamy mashed potatoes and of course, the quintessential pumpkin pie (my favourite).

And all of this recent holiday energy has transported me back to last year. I remember how stressful things were, trying to get multiple holidays working at once.

Make sure we buy plenty of food for Thanksgiving, have enough candy for Halloween, and buy gifts for Christmas before all the good stuff is on backorder. The constant moving of furniture and decorations around.

This is all on top of the regular stressors of work, finances, kids being sick, etc.

At some point we start hoping things end quickly so we can hop in to bed early and just end the day, but it’s only 10:30 a.m. and the Toronto cousins that were supposed to pick up grandma haven’t even left their house yet.

I think we get drawn in by the allure of a perfect holiday season: decorations, gifts, family gatherings, and of course, the food. We are enticed by the promise of a picturesque October and an unforgettable Thanksgiving.

But reality often doesn’t match expectations. That got me thinking about how we celebrate October and Thanksgiving, what I consider the start of the end of the year holiday season. Are we too focused on creating a picture-perfect image that we forget to give ourselves a little grace?

Do we prioritize appearances over substance?

I think it’s important to remember that while having a beautifully decorated home and a mouth watering spread at our dinner table can add to the festive mood, they are not what truly makes holidays special.

The real essence of this season lies in gratitude, love, and togetherness. The joy of being with our loved ones, sharing stories over a warm meal, and expressing our gratitude for all that we have.

Holidays shouldn’t remind us of stress.

This year, I want to focus on creating memories that last longer than an Instagram post. I want to take that beat and be truly present. Of stepping away from life for a little bit and just have a day to be together with the people I care about.

Let’s make this October and Thanksgiving about the real deal – love, joy, and gratitude. Thank you for reading The Villager. Happy Thanksgiving and a spooky Halloween.