Since the holidays are all about traditions, love, and kindness, I thought I'd share a tradition I'm making a new part of my holiday this year.
I know a lot of people choose to eat turkeys on Thanksgiving, and I respect each and every person's choice to live in the way they see fit. But since I've met and fallen in love with the turkeys I've come across at sanctuaries, I can longer eat them. Mostly because I've pet turkeys, cuddled with them, let them lay down right beside me, heard them talk to me in what seemed like several different turkey languages, hand-fed them, learned how unique each turkey's personality really is, and just generally enjoyed their company. Turkeys have a special place in my heart, so I've made a commitment to honor them on Thanksgiving by celebrating them, rather than eating them.
Every year, Animal Acres, a farmed animal sanctuary in Acton, CA that I volunteer at, has a wonderful event called The Thankful Turkeys celebration. The description of the event from the website reads:
The festivities start at noon with farm tours of the sanctuary. You will get to meet and give love to all our sanctuary critters, while hearing about their heartwarming rescue stories. At 1:30 pm we will gather for our Feeding the Turkeys Ceremony where it's the turkeys turn to enjoy salad, pumpkin pie and stuffed squash!
After the turkeys have their Thanksgiving feast, the rest of us will enjoy a mouth-watering vegan Thanksgiving dinner.
I'll be volunteering all day at this, and I cannot wait. It's this Saturday, and my husband will be joining me.
I'm so happy to be able to log on everyday to a site that I love so much with people who are so diverse, yet share in the same belief that Christmas should be celebrated every day of the year. When I first found this site, I ate and bought what I was brought up on - meat, dairy, eggs, fish, and little else - and now, I eat grains, nuts, beans, fruits, and veggies - basically the polar opposite of what I ate before. I've also made the commitment of living in the least cruel way possible, no matter what I am buying, eating, or wearing. So much has changed in my life since I first found this beautiful site, yet the love in my heart for it has remained the same.
If anyone else has compassionate traditions they celebrate each year - whether it's giving back to your community this time of year through toy drives, soup kitchens, volunteer work, or maybe even spending time at a farmed animal sanctuary like me, I would love to hear them. Feel free to share, and Happy Almost Thanksgiving everyone!