Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thankful for... holiday traditions

Thanksgiving feast
Photo Courtesy of ccho
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and like most families, we have our own traditional foods.  Thanksgiving traditions seem to be a regional thing, around here they include green bean casserole, stuffing, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, and of course, turkey.  But every family has their own traditional dishes or desserts that make the meal complete.

For my family, our more ethnically tradition centered holiday meals are Christmas and Easter.  You see, we are Polish.  Unless you live in certain parts of Pittsburgh or Chicago, you may not be aware that there are some pretty serious Polish traditions for the holidays, and for my family, they are what make the holidays complete.  At Christmas, we do the traditional Christmas eve Wigilia dinner, which includes several kinds of fish (no meat), and other Polish dishes, including my personal favorite, pierogi.  On Easter, we make Polish beet borscht, and have several other Polish traditions within our menu.  I cannot imagine celebrating these holidays without my favorite traditional foods.

Yet many people go without their favorite traditional foods during the holidays.  Many people go without any food at all.

In light of this, I am proud to be partnering with the Pittsburgh Tote Bag Project as a sponsor during their holiday project this year (see the button in my sidebar to the right).  This year they are focusing on collecting ethnic holiday foods, to help support the culturally diverse people of the Pittsburgh area.  They have made it so easy to help support this project.  They list different ideas for how you can get involved, include shopping lists of ethnic food items that are in need,  discuss different ways you can become a sponsor, and even list donation drop off locations.

Imagine your absolutely favorite holiday dish.  Now imagine you had to go without it.  That is a pretty terrible feeling.  Imagine how incredible it would feel to know that you, YOU, made someone's holiday special by providing their favorite dish.  During your celebrations tomorrow, and throughout the month of December, please consider getting involved with this truly phenomenal organization and help fight hunger.

I am truly thankful, on this Thanksgiving eve, for the holiday traditions celebrated in my family.  I am equally thankful for the chance to help a family in need get to enjoy holiday traditions of their own.