It was a holiday weekend to remember. I’m 35 years old, meaning I’ve eaten 34 Thanksgiving Day turkeys and helped decorate 34 Christmas trees prior to this year.
OK, maybe not 34. I doubt my 1-year-old self was hanging Christmas ornaments. But, you get my point.
So what’s different this winter compared to the 34 before?
Well, it may seem minor, but my children are now old enough to remember previous holidays, get excited about helping mom with the Thanksgiving turkey, watch football with their father and have a blast ending the weekend with a search for a Christmas tree.
My son and daughter, turning 6 and 4 this winter, respectively, helped with nearly every aspect of our Thanksgiving Day feast. From stirring mashed potatoes, to taste-testing homemade apple pie, to basting the turkey, it was certainly a hands-on event.
On Sunday, we found ourselves in Flagstaff at a local tree farm where the employees dressed as elves, the entire property was decorated with Christmas lights, hot cocoa was served and the kids were able to mail their wish list to Santa.
After the Christmas tree was strapped in, we hopped in the truck and drove to Williams for a late lunch. It was there we saw Santa’s sleigh for the first time. Although it was a zipline ride across town, it was still fun to see the children’s faces light up in wonder.
Upon our return home in Prescott Valley, we decorated the tree, hung the stockings and attempted to answer my children’s questions about how Santa was going to enter our house this Christmas eve. We don’t have a fireplace this year, a first for them.
We managed. After all, Santa is magic, making it easy to explain to our kids how he can come in through the ventilation system.
So to answer the question that many asked themselves this past week on what I’m thankful for, that’s easy. My wife, my children and another holiday season to make memories we’ll cherish for years to come.
And pie. I can’t forget pie. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
Brian M. Bergner Jr. is sports editor for The Daily Courier, the Prescott Valley Tribune and the Chino Valley Review. Follow him on Twitter at @SportsWriter52 or on Facebook at @SportsAboveTheFold. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 928-445-3333, ext. 1106.