Rae Bates

Happy Thanksgiving

This week we will celebrate Thanksgiving. Many of us will gather with family and/or friends to eat, talk, laugh, and possibly argue. A lot of people will settle in to watch football. And these days lots of people will shop.

There is a lot of controversy surrounding when and where the first American Thanksgiving celebration took place. What is known is that people gathered for feasting to celebrate making it through very difficult times. The meal most likely included venison, eel, and fish as well as fresh vegetables from the new harvest. It is thought that the Native Americans brought the Europeans their first taste of popcorn, too. Though, I’m not sure we would enjoy it today. It would have been popped a couple of days before and would have lacked salt and butter.

In 1863, Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national day of "Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens," to be celebrated on the last Thursday in November. Since 1942, Thanksgiving Day has been celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November. It is widely accepted that the reason for the change was to extend the Christmas shopping season to help retailers.

Speaking of shopping, Black Friday got its name through accounting. Many retail businesses operate at a lost (in the red) for a hefty portion of the year. Booming sales after Thanksgiving help those businesses become profitable (in the black).

If you are one of the many people who will be working on Thanksgiving, I hope your workday is free of stress and trouble.

If, like me, you’ll be spending the day with family and friends, enjoy!

May your week ahead be filled with sunshine.

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Rea Bates is an Independent Consultant with the Pampered Chef. You can see her Facebook Page by clicking HERE. Her column appears each Sunday in Peru Indiana Today.