Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Thanksgiving according to a TCK

TCK: Third Culture Kid- "someone who, as a child, has spent a significant period of time in one or more culture(s) other than his or her own, thus integrating elements of those cultures and their own birth culture, into a third culture." This really is a great definition as its what I feel I went through. Spending 9 years overseas really gave me several different cultures to integrate into my own. I couldn't tell you where one part starts or ends, it just is woven into my being. When it comes to a holiday I find that often times I don't celebrate or see it normally.

Fall wasn't a normal fall when the weather was 90 degrees and up every day. There were no leaves changing colors and no raking to do. Pumpkin pie was only in the foreigners grocery store in limited quantity. Even with it being completely different you would still find all the expatriates trying to make it as much like home as possible. Out came the fall decorations and the cookbooks!

Our thanksgivings were never the same each year. We made the classic dishes with whatever we could find imported at the grocery store. The guests would rotate each year depending on who was needing a home to go to or who our close friends were. There were often times some dishes from other countries that other TCK families found to be "home" as well. We never knew what exactly Thanksgiving would entail except for a couple common denominators: lots of food, laughter and friends.

Now as thanksgiving approaches (next week! eeek!) I keep being reminded of how my thanksgiving was different growing up and how I wouldn't change it for the world.


  1. Sara,
    Thanks for this! As I am raising my own TCK's I often wonder what their take is on Holidays. I try to create some traditions so that when someday, someone asks "what did you do for _____" they have a story. I know this story will be unique, but it will be theirs, and hopefully they will remember it fondly and not feel that they were lacking something.
    Speaking of pumpkin pies, I have a huge pumpkin sitting on my kitchen counter waiting to be chopped up, roasted and turned into pumpkin pie! Now, if only I could find something to use as whip cream!
    Love to you!

  2. Shelly! I can promise that with a mom as optimistic and "glass full" as you are that your daughters will look back with fond memories. Our memories may be different and unusual but that is what makes them so special and memorable. Wish we lived closer though, your food updates always make me drool!