This year, my family’s Thanksgiving was proof that there is power in shared and intentional experiences. Instead of retreating to our own individual worlds as we normally do, we chose to come together.

Breaking away from the usual routine, my mom and I decided to have us all play a hilarious game of charades. So as the aroma of Thanksgiving filled the air, young and old gathered around, from age six to 80, and took turns acting.  

As we conquered each challenge in guessing the seemingly impossible answers and exaggerated charades, we discovered talents in some that we didn’t know existed. We also learned to work together and encourage each other.

Laughter also echoed from every corner of the house as we attempted to decipher each other’s hilarious gestures, tears rolling down our cheeks.

And in those moments, everything else seemed to fade away.

While every Thanksgiving proves to be special in its own way, this one was exactly what we needed. Yes, a silly game of charades proved the perfect way to break away from the pressures waiting for us outside those four walls. It allowed us interact with each other, getting away from the phone screens which steal our family time. It allowed us to genuinely enjoy laughing with one another. I stopped for one moment during the game to look around, and there wasn’t one face in the room that wasn’t carrying a smile.

I think that life has a way of becoming heavy at times and we try to carry so much on our own. That night, for that time, we didn’t have a worry in the world.

This year’s Thanksgiving will definitely be a hard one to beat, but I pray we try again next year. And I pray that you and your family made memories this Thanksgiving … or perhaps will purpose to try some new ones like we did in the years to come.  

Turkey, ham, and homemade dressing are great, but seeing your family laughing together is such a comfort food for the soul.

Ashley Carter is a wife, mother, and grandmother living in Elmore County, where she and her husband run Farm to Table Living and Carter Farms. Ashley serves as Controller and Executive Assistant at 1819 News. She is currently working on an inspirational book of short stories. To connect with the author of this story or to comment, email [email protected].

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