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We tend to be pretty reflective and grateful about our lives on a daily basis, but as this is our first Thanksgiving on the road in our RV, we thought we’d share some of our thoughts on how we plan to celebrate, what we’re most thankful for, our favorite Thanksgiving foods and whether or not we plan to shop on Black Friday!
What’s your first memory of Thanksgiving?
Marc: When I was about 9, sitting at a big table with extended family – more than 20 of us – with everyone holding hands and and one by one sharing what they were thankful for. It was really special.
Julie: I am Australian and we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving down under, but my first Thanksgiving was during my first visit to the USA in 2007. I landed at Los Angeles airport on Thanksgiving Day and caught a taxi right over to the Agape International Spiritual Center in Culver City, CA (founded by Dr Michael Bernard Beckwith) and joined in with some 500 strangers sharing a pot luck Thanksgiving dinner! An 80-something African-American gentleman took me around to personally introduce me to almost all of them, table by table! Everyone was so kind, warm and welcoming – and amazed I had just flown in from Australia to visit with them! it was wonderful, heart-opening experience and a very positive start to my relationship with America!
What’s your favorite part of Thanksgiving?
Marc: Getting together with family to celebrate, share a wonderful meal together and reflect on the year so far. The food is pretty awesome too!
Julie: I love the tradition of everyone taking time to stop and reflect on the things – whether big or small – that we are all thankful for. I’m all for more rituals in life that cause us to slow down or stop and really give time and energy to the things that truly matter.
What’s your favorite thing to eat and/or drink at Thanksgiving?
Marc: My sister-in-law’s Pumpkin Pie. It’s amazing. I can never stop at just one slice. She usually makes a couple of pumpkin pies and my Mom makes 2-3 other desserts as well. There is never a shortage of sweets at our family gatherings!
Julie: The Autumn Salad my sister-in-law found on Pinterest and made last year. Oh, and the pre-dinner cocktails – it’s something different every year and they are always delicious!
What are you thankful for?
Marc: Our family back home, whom we will miss this Thanksgiving. But, I am grateful that this RV lifestyle has given us the opportunity to meet up, connect and share meals with other family members that we don’t get to see very often. Like my Dad in Northern California, my uncle in Sacramento and my aunt in Santa Cruz. I am also very thankful for my wonderful wife Julie, our dog Coda and all of the wonderful memories and times we shared with her. Also our ability to live this lifestyle now, while we are still young and healthy.
Julie: I am thankful to have been so warmly welcomed into Marc’s family. And I truly consider many of my friends to be family, so I am grateful for the opportunity to have met up with many of them during our travels, and that technology makes it possible for me to easily stay connected with family and friends around the world. Above all, I am grateful for my husband Marc – he is the best thing that has ever happened to me. I am so thankful that we finally met (better late than never!) and that now, we get to create and share these incredible journeys together.
Where will you be spending Thanksgiving and what are your plans for Thanksgiving Day?
Julie: We’re currently staying in the LA area, near Angeles National Forest, which is about a 45-60 minute drive east of L.A., depending on where you go. L.A. is HUGE!
Marc: We’re expecting a sunny 84 degree day (29C) here in L.A. on Thursday, so we’re packing a picnic and heading in to bike along the South Bay Trail beside the ocean through Santa Monica and Venice Beach.
Do you plan on doing any Black Friday shopping?
Marc: Absolutely not!
Julie: The only thing I plan to stock up on is some skincare products which I am buying online. We are definitely staying home (in the RV) on Black Friday to avoid the crazy crowds of shoppers! Besides, we have little room for extra “stuff” in the RV . These days, shopping just doesn’t appeal to us. We definitely prefer experiences over things!
Will you prepare a Thanksgiving meal in your RV?
Julie: I plan on making a picnic of turkey sandwiches for our bike ride on Thanksgiving Day. But on Friday, I will be making a Thanksgiving Dinner for just the two of us – turkey breasts with gravy, a sweet potato casserole, green beans and an autumn salad. Marc will make his yummy mashed potatoes and I will attempt to make my sister-in-law’s amazing pumpkin pie. We hope to have plenty of leftovers to last us the rest of the weekend!
Living this lifestyle has truly taught us how to appreciate every moment in every day, no matter how big or small. Whether it’s discovering a new road, gazing over Crater Lake in Oregon, walking in silence holding hands, paddling a tandem kayak on Lake Tahoe, listening to a woodpecker pecking away on a wooden shed, hiking new trails, looking up at the stars in the dark night sky, walking among giant redwood trees, enjoying pancakes for breakfast, listening to the sound of rain on the roof of our motorhome, time together talking and laughing, or the changing colors of a sunset. Just being in the moment and taking the time to appreciate everything – that’s what we’re most grateful for. The simple things. Life doesn’t really get much better than that.
Happy Thanksgiving to all!
2 thoughts on “What we are most Thankful for”
This absolutely what we feel too, my wife Marianne and I, within a few years we’ll be going full-time too. Early retirement, some savings and we’re ready to go !
I’m glad I found your blog because it reflects exacly what we want to do too !
I’m 47, Marianne is 51 and if everything goes well, we’ll buy a Mclouis 876G to be our home on wheels. The ideia is : ship it from Antwerp (Belgium) to Baltimore ( We just love north America) for a year (maybe 2, if we get an extended visa from the US Embassy… Let’s see what happens..) of roadtrip in the US/Canada and then back to Europe and visit France.
You two have fun in your adventures !
Keep on posting.
Roger & Marianne
Hi Roger and Marianne, great to read your message and plans! How awesome you are able to retire young and travel extensively so soon. I looked up the Mclouis 876G you are planning to buy – looks fantastic! We both really love the European styling, so beautiful. If we weren’t still working and/or if we were traveling Europe, we would probably do so in a B Class. The McLouis is definitely something we will have to keep in mind when we do eventually get to Europe. Probably not for a few years though, we may also spend some time in Australia – but we won’t be shipping our RV anywhere! Too big… I don’t think the European or Aussie roads or campgrounds would accommodate something this big, plus we’d want something with better fuel economy as gas is cheaper here int he USA than Europe and Australia. Have you looked into what’s involved in shipping the Mclouis to the USA – logistics, costs, timing? Do you have to change the driving controls to the other side of the vehicle or just get a special permit? That would be quite a big endeavour I am sure, researching all that. Hope you are planning to write a blog post about it – we would love to read it! Anyway thanks again for reaching out – it keeps us inspired to keep posting 🙂 Happy travels!