Be thankful for the things you have

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by Hope McKinney
Thanksgiving is quickly approaching and many of the students and faculty at Volunteer State Community College are preparing for the hustle and bustle of the holiday season.
Around this time every year people start to stress Christmas shopping, grocery shopping for Thanksgiving dinner and having their family come into town to stay with them.
More often than not we do not realize how lucky we are to share the holiday season with our loved ones. We are all too worried about Black
Friday shopping and getting the newest toys for our children and the best clothes and jewelry for our spouses that we forget to sit down and think about what we really are thankful for.
When we think about what we are thankful for this holiday season we do not need to think about material things.
We need to think about the people that surround us and the great memories that we share. There are so many great ways to gather your thoughts on what you are thankful for.
When my family sets the table for Thanksgiving dinner we lay down a giant table cloth that we can write on and when we start to eat we each write down one thing we are thankful for going into the holiday season.
After we are done eating everyone reads what they are thankful for out loud and we all share stories about things we overcame or goals we reached so far in the year.
This time with my entire family means more to me than anything, however not everyone gets to have that amazing traditions and love this time of the year.
I encourage everyone to make a difference in someone’s life this holiday season. Whether it be going to donate to your local shelter or doing some volunteer work you never know how far your kindness can go.
I admire my Grandmother so much in the fact that she makes it a point to us every year to invite someone new to our Thanksgiving.
She did not come from a wealthy family and she knows exactly how it feels not to have much.
She listens to people when they say they have nowhere to go for the holidays and she opens the doors of her home to complete strangers.
While I do not recommend inviting strangers into your home I could not be more proud of my family for their huge heart for people.
If you wanted to do this for someone look to some of your friends. I can almost promise you there is someone in your friend group, or someone you know from school that does not have anywhere to go for the holidays.
I encourage you to share your love with people this year in some way, shape or form. There are so many ways you can do so, and absolutely make someone’s day.
I also encourage everyone to remember those serving our country and who cannot be home with their families. Those women and men put their lives on the line every day for us every day and they deserve our appreciation always.
Coming from a military family, I can promise you that they appreciate every letter, care package and call they get. Even if you just send your friend a text or call saying that you appreciate their service that small gesture will definitely go a long way.
Everyone comes from a different background and celebrates different ways, but each and every one of us has at least one thing to be thankful for.
I hope everyone has an excellent and safe Thanksgiving. Remember all that you have to be thankful for.

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