Why We're Boycotting Thanksgiving With the Extended Family This Year

Only this year, my beautiful baby boy has given us an out. Whether our older relatives can remember it or not, having a newborn is hard. And taking a newborn anywhere is even harder. So this year, we opted for easy. Call us crazy or selfish, but we just couldn’t muster the energy to play the holiday game with our two little kids. No, this year, we are choosing a relaxing, positive experience, on our own terms. We will be getting our meal catered by a local restaurant. And then the four of us will spend Thanksgiving morning watching the Macy’s parade on TV while baking cookies and pie – a tradition I hope to keep up with my kids in the future. This year we will celebrate a major holiday for the first time as a family of four. We’ll nap when we want, go to bed when we want, and maybe even wear PJs all day without having to leave the house once. We will give thanks for having a beautiful home to call our own (as this will also be our first Thanksgiving since buying our house), for having each other, and for having the luxury of choosing where to spend the holiday. All of that certainly sounds more in line with the spirit of Thanksgiving than the alternative. Because somewhere along the way, guilt trips and obligation became the norm, but that’s not what it’s supposed to be about.

Next year, I am sure that we’ll be back to playing the holiday game and packing up our two toddlers for a day of family drama and pie à la mode. But this year is ours, and I couldn’t be more grateful.