Happy EastMasMemThanksFourth-0ween?


Last week began with Easter, ended with Thanksgiving and had Christmas in between.


It’s the “new normal” where anything goes, so why not? Southwick and Westfield celebrated Easter with public safety vehicles touring communities with none other than the Easter Bunny himself. It was a welcome sight for families who hosted socially distant egg hunts and got creative with their usual Easter meals.

Then, the unusual fun continued with Santa Clause spreading cheer in Westfield. Yes, you read that correctly. Santa Claus came to town in April. Thanks to Mama Cakes, Santa toured the city and offered a merry “Ho Ho Ho,” and instead of telling children to be good, he reminded them to wash their hands and stay home.

Also this week, the Tremblay family had Thanksgiving dinner. We had a roasted turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing and cranberry sauce, just like we do on Thanksgiving. I’ve seen several social media posts with photos of other families doing the same and wonder if it’s the comfort of Thanksgiving food we crave right now? Normally, my family gathers, as most do, to celebrate Thanksgiving. So maybe the food reminds us of those we can’t be with right now.

The day we planned the meal happened to be the toughest day in our house since the stay at home order. As I write this, it has been 35 days since my children went to school. They have been troopers, especially my daughter who has been completing her online schoolwork, participating in fun online art classes, enjoying FaceTime with friends and family and being a great household helper.

But on Thursday, she realized that under normal circumstances we would have been packing for our trip to South Carolina the following night. There, we would have spent time with my mother-in-law and aunt and uncle who are like grandparents to my kids. It was all too much for her and the tears came. She told me she was sick of doing everything online, from schoolwork to her dance classes to seeing friends. “I just want this to be over,” she cried.

As a parent – who also just wants this to be over – it was heartbreaking. There is very little parents can say or do that will calm a child at that moment, so she let it out and the next day was a little better. I am sure we all have our days when this is all too much. So, I am sending a great big “air hug” to everyone who needs it today.

When we ate our Thanksgiving dinner that night, we upheld the family tradition of going around the table and saying at least one thing we are grateful for, and that helped, because even in this crazy time, there is always still some little thing to be grateful for. Even if that something is just a smile and a wave from Santa Claus.

So, I propose we all celebrate whatever holiday brings us – or a passerby – a smile. I have seen people putting up Christmas lights, hanging hearts from their windows and more. So, if you happen to drive by my house at some point and notice pumpkins and witches, please don’t judge me and I will do the same when I spy your unseasonal decor.



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