Thanksgiving Thoughts

It’s Thanksgiving week, and like many of you, we have a busy week getting ready for company. Some of you may be traveling, so you have to pack and prepare to leave for the holiday.

This past week, as I was preparing my grocery list and finishing up some things I needed to get done around the house, I found myself “grumpy” about Thanksgiving, which is not like me because I love Thanksgiving.

I began praying for the Lord to change my heart and remind me of all I have to be thankful for. As I was praying, I realized why I was feeling frustrated…I miss the way Thanksgiving used to be.

For years, we went to my husband’s family on Thanksgiving day around noon, and then later in the day, we went to my aunt’s house for dinner. We would see both sides of our family, and I loved the whole day!

Fast forward to 2022, Wayne’s parents have passed away, my mom has passed away, and things have changed.

Wayne’s family now come to our house, and my family will come on Sunday. Things change, and I realize I’m struggling with the change.

I liked the way we did Thanksgiving all those years. I liked seeing so many in our family. When we went to my aunt’s house, all my mom’s sisters, brother, and my cousins were there. I loved catching up with everyone.

But things change, and while change is hard, it’s part of life. Jesus reminded me that He is the same yesterday and today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). I can cling to Him.

So today, I’m going to choose joy. I’m going to choose to see the blessings of Thanksgiving in 2022. Yes, I still miss my mom and my husband’s parents, but I have so many wonderful memories with them. For that, I’m thankful!

Maybe Thanksgiving is different for you too. Maybe you’ve lost a loved one this year, and the holidays will be very different. Please know I’m praying for you, and I’m praying you can find blessings in the midst of change.

Through every season, every hurt, every joy, and all our blessings let’s speak Jesus.


Have a blessed day!


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  1. My husband and I needed this. We’re both hurting this Thanksgiving. Praying for all who are hurting too. Blessings to you. Thank you.

    1. Sometimes the holidays are hard

      They are hard when you are missing someone at the dinner table or waiting for someone to walk through that door that will never show up

      Sometimes the holidays are hard

      It’s hard when the turkey and mashed potatoes are served up with a side of grief

      It’s hard when you can’t buy gifts for someone you love so much because they live in Heaven and Amazon Prime can’t even deliver there

      It’s hard when there won’t be any presents under the Christmas tree from the one you miss the most this year

      Sometimes the holidays are hard

      It’s hard when you can’t make new memories or take new pictures because someone is missing

      It’s hard when you are wondering and hoping if they are having a good time up there without you

      Sometimes the holidays are hard

      It’s hard when you lose people and the list for gifts gets shorter and shorter each year

      It’s hard when the old ornaments and movies bring back memories of when they were still here

      It’s hard when your heart is broken but everywhere you turn there is talk of joy

      It’s hard when it’s Thanksgiving and you want to be so thankful but you also want them here

      Sometimes the holidays are hard

      But then you realize that even though someone is missing from the table they aren’t gone because you’ll never forget them

      You realize that even though you can’t take new pictures or make new memories the old ones will mean more than ever before

      Sometimes the holidays are hard when someone you love so much lives in Heaven, but you realize that they never really left, the holidays just look different than you had planned

      1. Donna, perfectly said, brought tears to my eyes! Yes, things change loved ones pass on and even though they are in a better place doesn’t make it any easier when the holidays roll around without them. I am so thankful for my people I have but also miss the years past.



  2. Cyndi, thank you so much for sharing this! I’m sending you love and prayers this Thanksgiving because I know how hard it can be when things change for holidays and special occasions because of losing loved ones. I truly appreciate your honesty and transparency. I too have some feelings going on the past couple of years since my dad died. It’s so hard to move on without them. Hugs to you!

  3. I did a post on FB about this last week. Another struggle is when your children get married. We have to respect their commitment to their spouse with attending celebrations with their his/her side of the family. One year we traveled four hours to be with all of them and ended up at a Cracker Barrel just the two of us due to unforeseen circumstances. But this year we decided to celebrate one week early. Last weekend our family all got together and had a wonderful celebration on a family getaway. I felt so thankful for those precious moments together. I’ve learned you can celebrate anytime. It doesn’t have to be on the exact day of the holiday. Have a blessed Thanksgiving.

  4. I missed reading this post yesterday! But I too have had to deal with change… and yes the grumpiness can set in very easily.. I lost both my parents before age 50! And in January it will be one year since my husband’s dad passed leaving just my mother in law! We have already had our thanksgiving ( Canadian ) but as we now have a new normal for thanksgiving and Christmas.. the two fall on me… but I’ve come to realize that it’s my time to carry the torch sort of speak! We have our children and now our first granddaughter with another one on the way… and our son is engaged so another one to soon join our family! It’s my time to make and create the memories for all of them and keep the traditions alive while making new memories! Wishing you and your family a happy thanksgiving 💕

  5. I do resonate with this Cindy!

    Thank you for sharing. I was just having “my life is so miserable” moment as I scroll through social media seeing all of the happy families.

    I am reminded that although things are different, I do have a lot to be Thankful for.

    I am thankful for you! Thank you for shining your light for Jesus with us. ❤️

  6. It’s funny you mention this. Over the weekend I finally realized why Thanksgiving wasn’t a holiday that I looked forward to anymore. My parents divorced when I was 19 and it changed the whole dynamic of our family and our lives. We used to go to my grandparents for Thanksgiving and all of our siblings would be there along with the rest of the extended family. My parents each found new loves and left us siblings on our own. I still enjoyed my time with my grandparents but they are gone now too. I feel better this year now understanding my lack of enthusiasm.
    With all of that being said, I am extremely grateful for my husband, kids, and grandkids and making new memories!

  7. It is so difficult. We’ve lost both sets of parents plus our son who LOVED holidays and was a big help to me passed 5 yrs ago.. We are making new traditions with our other son and family and soon to be grandaughter in law.
    Unfortunately my DH and I are sick and hopefully on the mend by Friday, our celebration. I will be SO Grateful for all especially our health!

  8. Change is hard 🙁 I lost my 90 yr old parents last year and we lost my husbands parents a few yrs before plus our son was killed in a car accident 5 yrs ago . Holidays are rough . I try to make the best of it . I’m sure you will too . Enjoy your Thanksgiving and thank you for your thoughts . Hugs

  9. I am not necessarily grumpy but I am sad. My Mom is on a nursing home and is moving more and more towards advanced stages of dementia. My Dad has died. My sister doesn’t speak to me. Our daughter is going through some things and is having marital problems. We usually drive about an hour away to my husbands brother’s house for Thanksgiving but I told my husband I’m not feeling it this year. So, I am cooking for our family this year. But I also read your other post about being thankful for the good times, the good blessings, etc. I choose joy and pray continuously for Jesus to give me strength, grace, and to fill me with joy, even though cooking a big meal gives me tremendous anxiety. 😂 I hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving! 🫶

  10. So beautiful. My parents are 80 and 82 and I’m so worried about them driving 6 hours to be with us at Thanksgiving. It is really hard for me to leave their care and my worries at Jesus’ feet. I know I need to pray and leave it with Jesus. He has them in his hands.

    1. Hi Kerrie,
      Your comment reminded me of something a friend once told me. She said she would always worry about her son when he would travel for work, and she would pray that the Lord would be with him. Then one day she realized…the Lord IS with him, so she changed her prayer to “Thank you, Lord for being with him and for being in control”. As a worrier myself 😊, I have tried to remember and pray this prayer for my family. I just felt like I should share that. Happy Thanksgiving!!

  11. Your post touched me as I am also feeling this way. My husband and I have lost both of our parents so everything has changed. I was looking forward to seeing a nephew whose wife recently had a baby but they are not coming this year. So many changes but I am trying to just be grateful for all the blessings we do have. Thank you for your post!

  12. Morning Cyndi, just finished reading your Thanksgiving Thoughts and it spoke to my heart so much I have tears in my eyes. I just told my husband this past weekend that I’m so ready for this year to be over. We lost my dad in September we didn’t even know he was sick and he was gone in one week in the hospital. We lost our families most favorite place to vacation for the past 52 years same place same time in Daytona Beach due to the hurricanes and this past Friday I had to put my little Rudy to sleep my little Shih Tzu of 16 half yrs. Now this Thursday I’m hosting Thanksgiving for my entire family. It will be so hard without my dad but like you said I will pray that God will give me strength to find the joy. Bless you and have a wonderful Thanksgiving! From Ohio!

  13. Cyndi thank you for sharing your feelings. Your message about clinging to Jesus is true. I always love reading your faith message.
    My daughter now cooks Thanksgiving dinner. She invites friends who have no one to spend Thanksgiving with. So besides our family we have a lot of people. I’m proud of her for doing this. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

    1. It’s our first holiday without my dad and I’m so sad. I want to celebrate for my children so they learn how to navigate these hard times but it’s just that’s – hard. My 11 year old was recently saved and will be baptized on Sunday. That will be another bittersweet moment because my dad wanted so bad to see all his grandchildren saved. I pray for God to help us focus on joy and thanksgiving for all we’ve had and still have.

  14. I’ve read everyone’s comments and realize I’m not alone in my frustrations, anxieties and missing Thanksgivings of the past. Thank you Cyndi for sharing your feelings with us. And thank you for the reminder that God doesn’t change. We can all help lift each other up.

  15. This is exactly how I’ve been feeling. We’ve lost my mom, and both my husband’s parents in the last 2 years. It really changes everything, especially around the holidays. I am struggling with it too. I just find myself so sad and not ready to make the changes as the oldest generation in the family. I feel too young for that. I am grateful for all the years that we could all celebrate together. I am trying to figure out what new traditions to start while honoring those that came before us. Anyway, thank you Cyndi for this post. It makes it a bit easier to know that others are struggling with this too and that we are not alone. I know that God is with us too.

  16. Thanks for the encouragement.
    We always had Thanksgiving at our home, and at times up to 50 people would be here. I LOVED IT. Seeing my parents, in-laws, sister & brothers with their children.
    We are now down to my husband & I our 2 children, and 2 grandchildren. Every other year our children spend the day with their in-laws, those years it is just we 2. It just seems strange. I miss those days of loving chaos. My Dad always peeled the butternut squash and brought it with him when he and my mother arrived.
    I just miss them all.
    I am thankful for so much, but just sentimental of Thanksgivings past. I hope my children have wonderful memories of them as well.
    This week we all choose joy.
    Have a blessed holiday.

  17. Thanks for the encouragement, Cyndi! This is the first holiday after our son got married, the first in our family. So it feels different, but it is all good changes and lots of blessings to be thankful for. Happy Thanksgiving!

  18. Thanks for sharing your feelings. I, like many others, have the same feelings and loss. And thankful, too, that while many things change, God never changes. He gives us a hope and a future and joy for the journey.

  19. Thank you Cyndi for sharing how you are feeling. My husband and I just had a discussion about holidays past. We miss the holidays from our childhood, the magic that seemed to be in the air from Thanksgiving through the New Year. We miss our families that have passed on, but know that they are with us in spirit. We choose find joy in watching our grown children with our grandchildren and strive to share in the excitement that each young generation feels throughout the holiday season. It our children and grandchildren that help push away the grumpiness and remind us how much we truly have to be thankful for. May you and your family have a blessed Thanksgiving.

  20. Thank you so much for this! I’m 65 and have always had thanksgiving at our house. We have downsized and our immediate family has grown to add Five grandchildren in four years. My daughter in law and son offered to have it so we could spread out more. I didn’t answer back for a week. I was so grumpy, I didn’t know how to respond. I just couldn’t imaging not having it. But, God has a plan for each of our lives and it’s now time to pass the torch, but it’s so hard! I just had to give it to God and I feel so much better!

    Have a blessed Thanksgiving!

  21. Oh. Cyndi, does this ever resonate with me! I’m right there with you feeling all the change and struggling to adjust to it. We lost my sweet Mama in 2021 very fast to breast cancer. We found out and she passed in 3 weeks. Last years’ Holidays were a mess of emotions but we banded together. This year is still very hard and not having her sunshine-y personality leaves me floundering. I just try to remember she wants us to LOVE each other, be happy and remember the great times we had. Most days that helps, but I agree that the big change of it all is SO SO HARD! I’m also extremely thankful for the love and dependability of Christ…how would we get through all life throws at us without Him? Prayers for you as you also struggle to adjust to our new lives. 🙏

  22. I definitely needed this message, it was no coincidence that you happened to write this. Over the years I have lost so many loved ones, and I started out putting a place setting at the table for my Mother and my sister, and putting a little votive on each plate in their honor, now over the past eight years we have have lost four more; my Dad passed from Covid a year ago, and we lost my husband’s Mother and both of his grandparents, so now I do the votives only, in fact my bought six new glass votives the other day for them, and will light them on Thanksgiving, all the kids and grandkids know what they symbolize: our loved ones who aren’t here with us, but are in spirit. I get very down also because of these huge changes, but I remind myself that they would want us to continue with tradition, enjoy one another, have fun, and not be sad, so I really try, though I have my moments. This year, the day after Thanksgiving will mark 10 years since I lost my precious Mother, and I have been struggling with that for a couple weeks already, so thank you for your message. ♥️

  23. Thank you for the reminder to be grateful for what we have. I loved hosting Thanksgiving for decades. I love cooking the meal, dishes my mom used to make. Now my daughter hosts the meal (using many of the same recipes), and we live close to them, but far from my husband’s brother and sister in law. My mom and dad are gone, but her recipes (some from her mother I think) live on each and every year. Being with our son in law (and his mom, dad, maybe his siblings), daughter, and two young grandsons will be wonderful. We are so thankful to live near them now and enjoy our time with them, making wonderful memories. Change is hard, for sure, but it can also bring much joy and love.
    I always have a hard time during the holidays. I suffer from anxiety all the time, but it is worse during the holidays. Your words remind me to look at our blessings. Thank you.

  24. Cyndi thank you for this message today. I lost my mom this year. She had a good full life and was ready to go home to the Lord. She was 93. But I realize that I’m just now mourning the loss fully and I know it’s because the holidays are here. She passed away on January 10,2022. I will look for the joy this season also and be thankful because God has given me so much to be thankful for. Have a blessed Thanksgiving Cyndi and thank you for all you do

  25. Same here. My Dad, Mom and eldest brother have passed. My other brother sticks close to his children and their houses for holidays. So my family and my sister’s family try to arrange to get everyone together. When Mom and Dad were alive we were expected to be at their house on holidays and no one disagreed. Now that they aren’t here, everyone does their own. It’s like herding sheep. 🐑🏃🏽 Yes, times have changed and the emphasis has to be on being grateful because it can quickly turn to sadness for the way things used to be. And then we coordinate with my husbands family. I’m so thankful that the Lord gives us grace.

    THANKYOU for all the time you spend providing content and kindness to your audience.

  26. Cyndi, thank you so very much for sharing and being honest about your feelings. I am definitely feeling a bit grumpy this year, as I lost my mom in September. I found myself being angry at having to buy extra groceries for the Thanksgiving meal and frustrated because I will have to change my plans to accommodate my (step)dad, who will be alone for the holidays for the first time in 33 years. And Thanksgiving is also his birthday. My husband and I usually have Thanksgiving with his parents, who live 2 1/2 hours away. But I prayed for forgiveness for being so selfish and prepared my menu – and outfit lol – and am now looking forward to the “new” way of celebrating and being thankful for the wonderful man who loved my mom so much!!

  27. Thank you so very much for your sharing your heart today!!! I so needed you to!!! All my family lives in Florida and I live in Arizona and my husbands parents and sister do as well. They aren’t even kind to us!!! My husband insist we go to Thanksgiving and Christmas with them. It is very hard!! They don’t know the Lord and drink like crazy and are very crass!! But as Christians my husband says we must go. I’m dreading this year but I’m trying hard to find joy!!! I’m holding on to Jesus who is my redeemer and my rock!!! I pray you have a blessed Thanksgiving!!!

  28. This post speaks to me. For my whole life we went to my grandparents. About 20-30 family members all eating and laughing. Now they’ve been gone a few years and it’s all different. Maybe 6 of us. It’s sad but I agree, I pray to be thankful for what I still have.

  29. Thank you for this sweet reminder! at times I forget to see Gods plan, today I’m so reminded of the wonderful Blessing before me, Oh so much to be thankful! Blessings to and your beautiful Family

  30. Cyndi, When I read this it was like I had written it. Your thoughts exactly the feelings I’ve gone through. When we’ve had such wonderful family and family memories it’s hard not to miss. I too loved going to my Aunts and seeing all my Aunts, Uncles and cousins etc. Life does change and we have to move forward for sure. Over the last years now, I’ve looked back and I’m so thankful for the family host, as it’s a lot of work to host and I’m sure it wasn’t always easy for our Aunts or parents to always do it. Happy Thanksgiving and thanks for being real and sharing. My husband and I will be alone this Thanksgiving, but that’s alright. I’m thankful we have each other, I don’t have to do a big dinner and my kids and grands will be having a great time at the other grandma and grandpas house. Blessings!!!!

  31. Your message was perfect timing for me as this time of year is sad and difficult for me. I unexpectedly loss my hubby in October 2020. We were soulmates. Married for 39 years and I was with him since I was 17. We have 3 beautiful kids but they have grown up and away. They now have lives of their own so holidays are now shared and just not the same. How I long for those past holidays but you are so right, we can focus on our blessings. And always speak Jesus. Thank you. 🙏💗

  32. Your words and insights are powerful. Thank you for sharing your heart. I relate so much and needed this reminder. As I type this comment through tears, I am grateful for you and all you do.

  33. Thank you for sharing today. I am in the same phase of life where my kids are growing up and out and have other places to go and do. Thanksgiving is different this year and will be different for the years to come. It’s hard to wrestle with but sometimes change can be good. I’d like to believe that but sometimes it’s hard. I want them to stay the same. Have a wonderful week with your family.

  34. Thank you so much for this and your openness in sharing your heart! Your words are always a blessing to me and these today especially. I was feeling the same this year as I recently (2020) lost both my parents within 3 weeks of each other and last year my father in law. Thanksgiving was always at my parents home or mother in laws and I too miss all the family getting together, but thank you for the reminder of blessings among change & leaning on Jesus. Change is hard especially in people but we do have alot to be thankful for. Thank you for all you do & your openness & willingness to share God’s love with us. I too will be praying for you and saying thanks for the recommendation I got a long time ago to follow you on Instagram! Happy Thanksgiving!

  35. Thank you for your message today Cyndi! Change is such a hard thing. I so appreciate the music you provide with your messages. I would like to know your source for your music. Are there groups etc you could recommend that are your favorites?
    Thanks so much,
    Have a blessed Thanksgiving!

  36. Cyndi, Thank you for your inspiring and encouraging words. I, too, have had much change at Thanksgiving. This year I’m away from my husband helping my son & his wife who will come home from the hospital on Thanksgiving with their 2nd little one, and number one is quite a challenge for me. I’m praying I will be filled with Christ’s love and have a thankful heart .God has been good to me but the Holiday is very different with no other family nearby. Bless you, Cyndi!

  37. Cyndi, I am a much older follower of you. While I love your style in fashion, the two main reasons I read your blog every day are 1) your love for Jesus and the way you put Him in the center of everything you do and write, and 2) your sharing your extended family with me. I see the love of God in everything you do.

  38. Thank you for this reminder Cyndi.We were expecting a granddaughter on November 4 but she was born sleeping on September 13. Struggling with feeling thankful at times- feeling passes quickly <3 I am grateful for the reminder this morning. Have a blessed Thanksgiving.

    1. Monique… Soooo sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine. May Jesus give you the confort you need today and during the holiday. Prayers going up for you and your family right after I text.

    2. I am so sorry for your loss, Monique. I cannot imagine your sorrow. May you find some moments of thankfulness as you mourn your loss.

  39. Thank you for today’s post. I’m feeling EXACTLY the same way for the same reasons. This helped me. Thank you Cyndi!

  40. Great post. Thank you for your raw honesty. I can definitely relate and your choice of joy and laying your feelings at the Lord’s feet is such a great example for all of us.

  41. Hi there and Good Morning!

    Currently waiting in my sweet daughter and husband to finish getting ready for church. I came across your email and YES to all of it.

    So many have endured changes to traditions. Traditions held for some many years. And I admit, I’ve taken for granted.

    Heard for us to accept it sometimes. But your words hit the nail right in the head.

    Thank you for your spirit God has given you and the ability to use your social media platform to spread the good word.

    Have a Blessed Thanksgiving with your families!

    Kelly from Tennessee 😁

  42. Cindy,
    Thank you for speaking from your heart. My husband and I are in the same situation in our lives. I find myself missing the way things were but I remind myself that I will choose joy, and when things get overwhelming- I remind myself that God’s grace is sufficient. We work together on the meal and talk about our loved ones and cherish our memories. Our family has so much to be thankful for and we will rejoice this Thanksgiving!!

  43. Thanks, I needed that. Sometimes, I wished I didn’t have memories. I am a widow and I wished those memories gave me happiness. They don’t, but I am glad for the children. It would be awful to have sad memories. Others are expressing the same thoughts. Thanks again Cyndi.

  44. I so needed this word today!! Just yesterday I was feeling the Sadness of not having My Son and My Mom here. But with Jesus I still have Joy and Thankfulness!!
    That song is one of my Favorites, Speak Jesus.
    Thank You and have a Blessed Thanksgiving.

  45. I sure needed this today. Since my husband passed await close to 6 years ago, it has changed how we have always done Thanksgiving too. Since then I started having dinner here at my home. We also lost both his parents within 9 months of each other in the past 2 years. It is more challenging for me now, but we all have a great time when we are together. I am so thankful that I still have my sweet parents. But it is still hard with all the changes. I can so relate with what you are saying. Praying for you and your family to have a wonderful time together on Thanksgiving. I am also very grateful for all the joy true blessings that Jesus continues to give.

    1. Thank you for this. I feel the same way. My parents have dementia and will be very different this year. I miss those days from the past. For that I am grateful. Have a blessed Thanksgiving!

  46. Thank you for this. I have struggled a bit with the holidays since losing my parents and my kids having grown and being out on their own. I find myself wishing away the days of the holiday season reminiscing about when the kids were young and parents were still with us. Time moves on and I have much to be grateful for. Happy Thanksgiving!

  47. You are a real inspiration cyndi. I Enjoy your blogs especially the spiritual ones. Happy thanksgiving from a Canadian!

  48. This is all so true. Change is hard, I cherish memories with my loved ones who aren’t here anymore as well. Thank you for this amazing reminder to be thankful for where we are now in our lives and to be joyful in Him always. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family. ♥️

  49. I feel this way too Cyndi. I’m sitting here watching my sweet mother slowly slip away and I’m upset because things are changing. I know the Lord comforts the broken hearted and that I’ll see my mom again. And my husband sent me the most fitting Winnie the Pooh quote. “How lucky I am to have loved someone so much that it makes saying goodbye so hard”.

    1. Cyndi, thank you so much for sharing this! I’m sending you love and prayers this Thanksgiving because I know how hard it can be when things change for holidays and special occasions because of losing loved ones. I truly appreciate your honesty and transparency. I too have some feelings going on the past couple of years since my dad died. It’s so hard to move on without them. Hugs to you!

  50. Thank you for sharing this today. My thoughts and feelings are exactly the same and I really needed this. For that, I am grateful today.