For about 10 of the last 13 years, my family has had a tradition on the Sunday evening after Thanksgiving of going the Los Altos Parade of Lights at which we have been treated to marching bands and various Christmas characters and floats all lit up with holiday lights. We feast on hot chocolate, cookies and candy canes as we watch the parade go by. All of the children with their pink cheeks and wide eyes. It is a Norman Rockwell event on steroids.
So now my kids are 11 and 13 and that parade is no longer the draw it used to be. Yet another tradition down the teen aged toilet.
So, what to do, what to do. I have to admit that it was not a conscious replacement of events, but turned out to be a stunning contrast, quite amusing to me as I thought about it. What we did this Sunday evening after Thanksgiving was take the kids to see the Metallica concert in San Jose! The mother of all head bangin' bands, the granddaddys of metal themselves. As I looked over at my kids and my husband at the concert, all of them bobbing their heads in true metal fashion, I suddenly saw the contrast between the metal extravaganza and the parade of lights. How times have changed. I miss those innocent days of sugar plum ferries and reindeer, but I have to admit, I loved shouting "give me fuel, give me fire, give me that which I desire" with my boys! They are growing up to be not just great kids, but individuals that I enjoy spending time with. People with whom I have much in common. And the true blessing of this Thanksgiving for me is the fact that my pre-teen and teen-aged sons actually enjoyed hanging out with their parents on this evening. God bless us, everyone!