Time and Place

On November 23rd, 2017, the US calendar is marked as Thanksgiving. While this day has an origin story and many traditions that have accumulated for each family, we often find ourselves asking what are we thankful for. This tradition seems out of place for my family, as it is a day too early. Every Friday night our family asks each other two questions, “What are you grateful for this week?” and “What did you fail at this week?” Luckily for us, we get two opportunities this week to ask and answer those questions. The question is, what will each of us say in our response? As I was considering my approach, I was struck by the idea that maybe I shouldn’t say something or someone — but perhaps a time or a place that I am grateful for this week. The prayer for Shehecheyanu, a prayer we say several times a year during various holidays, commemorates whenever we do something for the first time that year. Our travel groups also say this prayer together when they want to celebrate being together as a group, in a special place, for the first time. Today I am grateful that we have the time off, the means to travel, and the opportunity to all be together in one place.

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