One of the things I miss most about being in the States is the big holiday celebrations with friends and families. On Thanksgiving we always went to one of my aunts’ houses in High Point or Mebane to celebrate with my mom’s family. We were home the previous year for it because of Dad’s funeral but last year was the first time that we would be celebrating Thanksgiving on our own. Since I was coming in so late the day before Thanksgiving, Jeremy and I decided that for Thanksgiving we would order a meal from JD’s (a restaurant here on base). It had a turkey, some sides, and pie already cooked and ready to go. It was nice to sleep in and not have to worry about cooking a lot of food.
The Saturday after Thanksgiving was when we really celebrated Thanksgiving. We had reserved the community room in our tower. We invited my students, their families, and all of our friends to come over and have a Thanksgiving meal with us. We wanted to have it on Saturday so that my students (who have class on Thursday) could come and because that night the base was having a tree lighting festival near our tower. Jeremy and I thought the kids would like to see that. Unfortunately due to different circumstances, the only friends of our that could join our celebration were our neighbors, Desirae and Dejay.
My students and their families were excited to try the different American food. They hadn’t tried a lot of the foods that are normal for Thanksgiving. We had turkey, stuffing, green bean casserole, orange salad, pecan pie, chocolate chess pie, and a lot more. I’m sorry but I can’t remember everything. I was really surprised that this was their first time having turkey. Kensai wasn’t a fan of it. LOL
Before we headed out to the tree lighting festival, Jeremy and I gave the kids some Christmas theme Pez dispensers. They loved them. They also had fun coloring pilgrim masks that I had brought with me from the states.
The tree lighting festival was just a couple of blocks from our tower. They had bounce houses for the kids to jump in. There were performances of the elementary school kids singing christmas songs and people playing Japanese drums. In between the performances Santa and representative from MCCS had raffles for prizes and gift cards to the MCX. There were booths set up to give out hot cocoa, coffee, tea, and cookies to the crowds. There was also a booth with some people making balloon animals. The kids had fun running around and seeing everything. They even found some of there friends from school.
Once it got dark enough the lights on the giant tree in the middle of the area was lit with Christmas lights. We had fun posing for pictures in front of the tree. Everyone had a lot fun and it was a great way to close out the night.
While it wasn’t the traditional way we’ve always celebrated Thanksgiving, it was a fun day and I enjoyed it immensely. I don’t know yet what we are doing this year for Thanksgiving yet. We have talked about going back to the states so that we can see family and Jeremy can do a by name request for a recruiting station he wants to go to for our next duty station. Jeremy and I have also discussed maybe finally taking our honeymoon and going to Vietnam and/ or Thailand for a week or so. Or we may stay here and have another big celebration here. We don’t know yet but we also have a few months to make the decision. I’ve learned living out here to not make plans to far in advance because things can always change. That is military life.