Six years ago I never would have guessed that I’d spend my Thanksgivings being serenaded by country bands and trekking through cow dung, but now I wouldn’t have it any other way. We spent the holiday at a sprawling lodge in Lost Pines, TX, so our days were filled with crackling fires, livestock, frolicking children and dogs galore. There were wagon rides, goat races and s’mores at bedtime, and there was even a cold front that made this New England girl feel close to home. It was my sixth Thanksgiving in Texas, and all the festivities at the lodge made it abundantly apparent that we weren’t in Massachusetts anymore…Instead of pilgrims there were cowboys, and instead of toasts about Plymouth Rock people clinked glasses to the Alamo. To top this all off it was my second time spending turkey day with my boyfriend’s family, which imbued our week with a whole other layer of newfound traditions.
Since I’ve been thinking about the concept of home and one’s native landscape a lot lately, this holiday has only served to solidify the idea that we are constantly reinventing our definitions of home and family throughout our lives. Although I recently wrote about missing foliage, I’m sure I will ache to see Texas cows and hay bales on the side of every road when I finally make Los Angeles my full-time home. Maybe I will start associating various seasons with the different homes from throughout my life; the same way I yearn for the cherry blossoms and cobblestones of my childhood each spring, I just might hanker for a good cow pie in my boots and an evening of two stepping every autumn. Does this ring true to you – have you called dramatically different landscapes home throughout the years? Have each of these homes grown on you, or has your heart belonged to your original homeland no matter where you go? Wherever you and your heart are, my bovine buddies and I wish you a fabulous weekend.