Thanksgiving Traditions


Green bean casserole or green beans? Mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes? On this day before Thanksgiving, some members of the VBS Team are sharing their family traditions.

This will be the first Thanksgiving that my older nephew, Josh, who is a member of the U.S. Navy, will not be with us. He'll be at his home port at Pearl Harbor. (Lucky fella.) But, I am so looking forward to spending the day with the rest of my family. We go around the table and share the things we are most thankful for. Then, we enjoy a fabulous meal prepared by a family of great cooks! By the way, it's green beans and sweet potatoes for us!


Our church has a community-wide Thanksgiving meal on the Friday before Thanksgiving. It’s a great time of good food and time to get to know folks who may not regularly attend church.




My cousins and I always play basketball after Thanksgiving lunch...ironically, a game called PIG.

We also love to share what we are thankful that the Lord has done over the last year and spend some time affirming what we see the Lord has done in each other over the last year.



(We don't have a picture of Bethany yet. She's new to our team. You'll be introduced to her later this month!) We always eat recipes that my grandmother, my mom's mom, collected over the years of being a pastor's wife and traveling a lot. Most are pretty traditional with the unique exception of cushaw pie, which is way better than pumpkin. What makes cooking these recipes special, though, is the fact that we still have the handwritten copies my grandmother made, editing them to how she liked them as she went. Even though she passed away several years ago, it makes it feel like she's still there as we read them and repeat the things she told my mom and aunt over and over again about making the recipes come out right.


I don't really have any traditions. Other than eat/watch football. We are starting a tradition where we go to Opryland Hotel to see the Christmas lights.




When my parents were alive, my four siblings and I would gather at my mom and dad’s house for lunch and then games afterward. But since we lost both parents in 2006, now each family does its own thing. I have tried to follow through with some of the traditions from my parents. My kids gather at my house for turkey and dressing, and I allow each of them to “pre-order” a favorite dish/dessert for me to prepare for our lunch.

One tradition that I have started is to pick up some restaurant carry-out boxes beforehand. Then when we have finished lunch, and before everything is put away, everyone makes a plate to take home for a follow-up meal. If we know of sick family members or friends, we fix them a plate as well.

We all have so much to be thankful for, so why not share from our abundance?


We really don't have any special traditions except that we always travel to my husband's family in Mississippi. There is always turkey and ham and all the "fixin's." Most years several of us ladies get up really early on Black Friday to take advantage of the bargains!

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