It’s Thanksgiving weekend in the True North, and there’s always much to be thankful for, even if you have to look more closely these days

Thanksgiving weekend in Canada comes at a beautiful time of year; after all, the second Monday of October – our Thanksgiving’s official date – is at the height of fall splendour. And spectacular it is. We can be thankful for that.

My university, UNB, and our city beyond, glowing in their fall finery Thanksgiving-UNB

Remembering what we’re thankful for beyond the fall colours can be a bit more challenging. The state of the world doesn’t give us much to be thankful for at the moment. The frightening numbers of displaced and hungry people around the world doesn’t give us much to be thankful for.  The vulnerability of several of the world’s democracies, including democracies that were meant to lead the way, doesn’t give us much to be thankful for. So that means that we have to look a bit deeper.

The past two Thanksgivings were closed down dramatically because of COVID.  Now, although COVID has not disappeared – please remember that – the world has opened up. People are traveling to spend Thanksgiving with loved ones, often loved ones they haven’t seen for many months or even years. That’s definitely something to be very thankful for.

We each have the ability, both within and beyond our own communities, to get involved in volunteer work and/or through donations to make a personal difference in helping others.  And in doing so, it helps us feel better.  That is something to be thankful for.

In our sometimes struggling democracies, we have the ability to vote and to help others get out to vote. We have that freedom and that responsibility. That is something to be thankful for.

For those of us who are aging (aka old), we live with the reality that we are losing friends and loved ones at an increasing rate. Sadly, it’s part of the inevitability of the cycle of life. It’s not easy; there are times when it’s hard not to feel resentful because of those losses. That’s when we have to remember that the reason we’re losing more friends at our advanced ages is because we and our friends have had the privilege of living this long, living a good, long life. Instead of being resentful, we need to be extremely thankful for the strong friendships we’ve had and for the enduring spirit of those friendships, whose warm memories continue to sustain us.

This year I am particularly thankful:

  • That our older son and his family are visiting us for the Thanksgiving weekend. We haven’t seen them all “in the flesh” since August 2021. What a treat.
  • That our grandkids – really all kids, and university students – are able to be back to normal (or normal-ish) school routines. It’s been a long, painful period of COVID disruption.
  • That we live in a community where people smile and greet each other as they pass on the trails and sidewalks, in the grocery stores, at the gyms, etc., even when they don’t know each other. A friendly nod can make all the difference.
  • That our community is a welcoming one to new immigrants from many parts of the world. Our newcomers are enriching the fabric of our city.
  • Especially for my close friends and family, with whom I can share both joys and sorrows; and for the very strong memories of a few close friends who have departed this world but whose spirit remains, remarkably strong.
  • And for the blogging community; you have enriched my life in ways I could not have imagined.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!


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31 Responses to It’s Thanksgiving weekend in the True North, and there’s always much to be thankful for, even if you have to look more closely these days

  1. 9erick says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. barryh says:

    Thanks, Jane. I didn’t know that Canada also has a ‘thanksgiving’, similar to that in US. Reminds us to count our blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a beautiful picture! Especially lovely in the fall, but I bet the views are wonderful any time of year. As for Thanksgiving…here I am going to borrow from, of all things, Dr. Strange, when Wong notes, “I remain grateful about this universe. Even with its tribulations.”

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Roy McCarthy says:

    Well said Jane. It’s too easy to take the world’s troubles on one’s shoulders, jump from one disaster or worry to the next, when in reality we can do little about them. Yes, fight a few fights if we must but then realise that there are still many things we can find comfort and happiness in.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jane Fritz says:

      Thanks, Roy. Hear, hear! We have to learn how to stop beating ourselves up over the never-ending stream of bad events happening in the world over which we have no control. Blogging helps! 😏


  5. What lovely thoughts. Happy Thanksgiving to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wynne Leon says:

    Beautiful, Jane! Happy Thanksgiving to you!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. heimdalco says:

    Happy Thanksgiving, Jane … to you & my other several Canadian friends. My cousin that lived a while in Canada & hated to come home, reminded me it is your Thanksgiving. I hope it has been wonderful.

    I love this post. It is a combination of reality & sadness and hope & love. It is how things are today. I like that you found many good things for which to be thankful. While reading this I ticked off some of my own in my mind. The reality is that we find hope, love & things to be thankful for in our immediate sphere of influence while continuing to be hopeful for the things about which we have no control. Both your list of positives & my own seem to outweigh the negatives & for that I am truly THANKFUL.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Rose says:

    Happy Thanksgiving Jane! It’s heart-warming to read what you are thankful for. In the USA it is Indigenous Peoples’ Day (as opposed to, or alongside Columbus Day). It’s good to see people are becoming more aware of the various sides and truths of history.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jane Fritz says:

      Thank you, Rose. And I love that what I grew up celebrating as Columbus Day is now Indigenous Peoples’ Day. That change couldn’t be more fitting. And I agree that the increased recognition of some truths in history is encouraging.


  9. Happy Thanksgiving! You are so right in pointing out all the things we have to be thankful for, not the least of which is family. Ours gathered yesterday and because of the oddly warm weather we sat outside for a while before dinner, which my son helped cook, and for that I’m definitely grateful 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Bernie says:

    What a thoughtful post but that’s what I’ve come to expect from you Jane. I am so glad you got to see your son and his family! And yes Covid is still here and it’s nice to find someone else who recognizes that. Your picture is beautiful with all those reds! Happy Thanksgiving.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. debscarey says:

    Happy thanksgiving Jane, what a lovely photo you’ve shared ❤

    It is harder to find things to feel grateful about, but it's so important to do so, as well as to do what we can to improve the lot of others. Lovely post 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Happy Thanksgiving, Jane! – Marty

    Liked by 1 person

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