The moment the clock struck midnight the night of Oct. 31, I could already hear the Christmas carols ringing. Halloween was over, which many people interpret as the time to decorate their homes for Christmas. It’s as if we skip straight from October to December.

Every year, I feel the urge to defend the underrated spirit and traditions of Thanksgiving.

Growing up, Thanksgiving was my favorite holiday. Maybe it was because my grandpa made the world’s best gravy, but more likely, it was because my birthday falls around that weekend. Turkey day meant my day.

But now, Thanksgiving is so much more to me. Thanksgiving is the day my whole family comes to town and we spend the whole day lazing around, eating food, talking about how stuffed we are, then eating more food. It’s a day of family traditions, watching old family videos and sharing our thankfulness for this wonderful world around us.

Christmas is naturally more marketable than a day of turkey and gravy, which is why you will see the stores explode in green and red the same moment the Halloween candy goes on sale.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas. I love the music, the lights and the busy bustling at every shopping mall. I love the energy that seems to surround the globe as people from all over take time to remember Christ and His birth. The spirit of Christmas is special and unlike any other.

But Thanksgiving carries another special feeling, and it shouldn’t be ignored or skipped over. It’s a time to be with loved ones; it’s a time to love and serve others; it’s a time to be mindful, grateful and joyful.

I don’t want to get lost in the bustle of a commercialized Christmas, nor do I wish to be sick of Christmas music before the holiday even rolls around. We can absolutely remember Christ through our Thanksgiving traditions, but Santa Claus can wait until December. Let me enjoy my month of Pilgrims and turkeys.

This month, take time to remember what you’re thankful for. The world could use a little more gratitude, anyway.