Thanksgiving, eh? by Janice Carter

 That end tag should alert you, if the first word doesn't, that I'm Canadian. I'm not sure when or how "eh?" became a stereotypical meme for us Canucks (as we sometimes call ourselves) but this somewhat ironic title of my post today captures for me the dilemma of traditional holidays during Covid times.

       Canadian Thanksgiving was celebrated a couple of weeks ago, on Monday October 12th - a different date and different historical background from our neighbors to the south. Pilgrims didn't land on our shores hundreds of years ago, but French and later, English, explorers did. There are a few theories about how Thanksgiving began here: one connects the celebration to an early British explorer and another to similar customs in England. But the one that makes sense to me is that early settlers adopted the custom from our original Indigenous people who celebrated the harvest long before Europeans arrived. Thanksgiving as a holiday wasn't official until 1879 and it now falls on the second Monday in October.

    We always spend the holiday weekend at our cottage on Garden Island, which I've written about far too many times in this blog! :) Like most holidays, it's always involved family, extended family and feasting. This year was different, as holidays all over the world are for most people. Instead of the usual potluck supper in the sail loft, islanders held an outdoor, distanced get-together with people bringing their own drinks and snacks.

In front of the sail loft



 There was apple picking and cider making however, with distancing, and even the annual pumpkin carving contest.

The apple orchard


The winner - a pumpkin deer 

Many Covid themes this year - this pumpkin needs a haircut!

    This year we had a new event. A young islander who's a photographer and videographer, held an exhibit of his photographs as well as some of his videos. Here's his cottage, prepped for the nighttime gala.

Photo exhibit at The Office cottage

Garden Island, from a drone camera


My husband's sister and her family also have a cottage on the island and normally we would have a large family dinner. This year many family members were sadly absent due to Covid restrictions. Luckily the weather was on our side and we managed to enjoy an awesome potluck supper.

Setting up for outdoor dining with umbrellas for wind protection

     The evening ended with a night walk down the lane where we saw this :

A spooky pumpkin holder

Not so spooky by day!



 In spite of its non-traditional format this year, Thanksgiving was still a fun holiday and one that emphasized for all of us how much we have to be thankful for: family, good health and the peace of Nature.

Happy belated Thanksgiving to my fellow country people and Happy Thanksgiving ahead to our southern neighbors and friends!

Janice Carter 

August 2020

January 2021


  1. Thanksgiving is the one time of year my family tries to get all of us together. Unfortunately, this year is will not happen. We're all planning to stay home and have our meals here. We'll do a phone chat, like we do every year for those who couldn't make the in-person meal. It won't be the worse Thanksgiving. In fact, it'll be good to know that we are all safe and following the guidelines. And cooking will be a lot less, since my plan is to make the basics and have lots of leftovers.

    1. We're very lucky to still be able connect with our loved ones, even from a distance. Happy Thanksgiving ahead Shirley!

  2. This year were making new traditions. I hope by next year we can start saying, remember what we had to do to celebrate in the middle of COVID.... Just finished reading His Saving Grace. Love it when two people can find in one another the strength to move through past mistakes and on to true love. It was wonderful! Thank you for sharing your talents with this reader!

  3. Thank you for this lovely comment on a book that was such a pleasure to write! And yes, hoping for better times next Thanksgiving. :)

  4. Looking forward to putting Covid behind us! Happy belated Thanksgiving!

  5. Oh, thanks again...I love the trips to the Island!

  6. Same here but no more till next year! Hoping it'll be a more normal season. 🤞🤞Thanks for joining in, Liz!

  7. I would love to visit your island! Whenever I think about getting "back to normal" I'm reminded how many times I've seen FB posts about wanting a new normal, where compassion and other good qualities are foremost. I think romance writers can help. We don't write perfect worlds, but ones that most of us would like to live in.

  8. Lovely words Julianna! I've often fantasized about meeting my Heartwarming colleagues in real life and hosting them on Garden Island, though nowadays I'd be over the moon to have all my family there at one time.

  9. Remembering with sweet nostalgia our stay at your island several years ago!

  10. Remembering with sweet nostalgia our stay at your island several years ago!

  11. Ah me too! Such a wonderful reunion. Stay well, Janet!


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