Quick thoughts about my first Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving DayMy primary impression from my first Thanksgiving experience is that this particular festivity could have been an Arab celebration. I mean, it is really all about eating and meeting family. How more Arab can it get? I think Thanksgiving is my favorite of the holidays thus far, as it hits so close to home with its similarity to the culture in which I was born and raised.

We had a great time with the husband’s family and I got the rewarding experience of meeting some family members for the very first time. The food was very good and extremely filling. I also felt really proud to be able to contribute to the meal by making one of my “very easy” casseroles.

Then came Black Friday. Experiencing it for the first time was also an adventure worthy of documentation. The husband tried to talk me into waking up at 5:00 am to partake in one of those early bird – door buster deals but I vociferously refused. No amount of purchasing power in the world would tear me from the warmth of our bed at the crack of dawn, particularly to spend money on things I’m not sure I really wanted. Oh, and it was -10˚ Celsius.

Eventually, we both decided to join in on the latter part of Black Friday, after 12:00pm. And yes, sadly enough, I succumbed to the capitalist binge and ended up buying a number of items that I needed but, in truth, could have lived without! Ah, they got me! Happy Thanksgiving everyone!


  1. jareer November 26, 2005 at 3:42 pm

    How so similar to Arab celebration !
    1. The size of turky in Jordan, if found, is twice as big as the chicken; at most, 8 pounds.
    2. Although family is intended to meet, or reunite, lots of strangers are also invited to the ‘feast’ as an act of showing love and thanksgiving.
    3. There is no single occasion where one specific meal is eaten like in Thanksgiving; not even Mansaf.
    4. Almost all occasions where we have to meet, we complain, and complain, and show more complaints on various issues; nothing like Thanksgiving.
    While the Arab societies have their own wonderful types of social, religious gatherings (which beat in total the Thanksgiving, in my opinion), not a single national occasion would match the Thanksgiving.
    Happy Thanksgiving.

  2. Dan November 26, 2005 at 8:48 pm

    Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday.There’s no pressure to find just the right gifts for everyone,like at Christmas,and there are seldom any arguments or controversies.It’s just a time to get together with family members that you may not have seen for awhile,and share a feast while (hopefully) giving thanks to God for His many blessings.
    It’s a uniquely American holiday that originated with the Pilgrims..those early pioneers who would have perished if not for the kindness of the Indians (Native Americans). The fact that some of the Indians spoke English is just one of many amazing details that are expounded upon in the book”The Light and the Glory,” by Peter Marshall.
    Natasha,you would not be a typical woman if you didn’t like to shop! lol! I personally hate it,but my wife does enough for both of us.In fact she waited in line for an hour in frigid temps to avail herself of some great deals at CompUSA yesterday.

  3. Jordan November 26, 2005 at 8:55 pm

    Check this out .. how about a typical Jordanian Thanksgiving in America !
    So my family cooks a turkey, adds arabic dressing (rice with meat and nuts on top) . And like hummus.. meat pies .. arabic salad which is the one with lemon, salt and olive oil. Its like what the early Jordanians used to eat right after they disembarked the mayflower.

  4. kinzi November 27, 2005 at 2:40 am

    Natasha, I was thinking of you Thanksgiving Day and praying you would have an incredible FIRST in the US.

  5. Cie November 27, 2005 at 2:42 am

    It sounds like you had a great time. I enjoyed reading about it!
    I’ve never done one of those “black Friday” things and don’t intend to! For one thing, I work from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. and the last thing I’d want to do after a night of work is go fight with people for sale items!
    I’m enjoying reading the other people’s comments about their Thanksgiving also.
    I’m glad I found this site and will surely return.
    (Known to my vast fan base as the Cheesemeister!)
    Joking about the vast fan base…

  6. amal November 27, 2005 at 8:39 am

    Just out of curiuosity, ya ashta, was there pumpkin pie? I love it. What did your Jordanian palate make of it?

  7. Dad T November 27, 2005 at 8:41 pm

    So they “sucked you in”to consumerism? Well, worst things could happen. Enjoyed your comments on T’giving. The wife always thinks of T’giving as her favorite holiday. At our age we really don’t have holidays anymore…it’s just one after another!
    Our condolences, BTW, on the passing of your uncle. I was thankful for the good phone connections you have with your kin in Jordan and that all of you could commiserate together. It’s never easy to lose a loved one, even when they’re far away.

  8. Abu Sinan November 28, 2005 at 6:41 am

    I agree Natasha. Welcome to life as an American. I think it is really important to have stuff like this in America. We seldom slow down and family life here has suffered.
    Being married to an Arab woman myself I certainly appreciate the family life that is involved in the culture. I think it is one of the many things that people on both sides of the divide could take from each other.
    We have so much that we could learn from each other, the Arab world and the West. It is too bad that we are often too busy fighting each other to see it.

  9. Gray Carson December 16, 2005 at 4:27 am

    Hi Everyone,
    I’m regular visitor to this site, I have a passion to Mediterranean and Arabic cuisine. Actually, at the present I’m in working visit to Jordan-Amman.
    I’m the sole distributor of many high quality Jordanian olive oil in the UK, I used to distribute Italian, Spanish and Moroccan olive oil, but since I have shifted to the Jordanian olive oil(2003), I can tell there is great demand, even more than what I used see for Italian and spanish olive oil, its really amazing to find out that some of the Jordanian Extra Virgin olive oil has much higher quality attributes than Italian or Spanish oils.
    most of my sales of the Jordanian Olive Oil is from the Terra Rossa Extra virgin olive oil which comes in fancy bottles and sometimes combined with dilicious Zataar (green Herbs that tasts like Oregano).
    many specialty grocery shops and Italian and Greek restaurants in the UK are increasingly buying Terra Rossa Oil for both cooking and retail sales at their premises (36 different outlets in the UK).
    Personally, I only use Jordanian Olive Oil for cooking and I love the Zataar and zeit bread. its lovely.
    Thank You, Gray Carson


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