KHS Students’ Take on Thanksgiving


“10 Prompts for Talking and Writing About Thanksgiving”, The New York Times – Photo Credit: Tim Lahan

Isabella Espinosa, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Thanksgiving – the annual holiday where many families, friends, and people alike gather to acknowledge all that they are grateful for with a great feast and fervor for celebration. Within distinct communities across the United States, and even other countries that celebrate Thanksgiving on different terms, each person’s experience is a unique reflection of their holiday season. When taking a look at our own community at Kingwood High School, there are a variety of ways that our fellow students enjoy this day of gratitude. From their favorite foods and games to their unique practices and perspectives, Thanksgiving remains a beautiful holiday showcasing all of our special traditions.

For this Thanksgiving, I decided to reach out to some of my friends and fellow students to see exactly what their take on this holiday is like, as well as hear about some of their family favorites.

Thanksgiving Plans:
– “We will have the whole family (including grandparents, great grandparents and aunts, uncles, and cousins) come over and we will mingle around and dance. Then around 7 pm we will all gather at the dining table and say a prayer. Then as tradition, my dad will put on his (very manly) apron and cut the Turkey!” – Monty Cruz, Junior
– “I am spending Thanksgiving with my family. My two older siblings came home from college and my close friend is coming over since her family is out of town!” – Natalie Westwood, Junior
– “I’m starting off Thanksgiving by working the water station at the L3 run with Ms. Lard and other HOSA members! After that, I’m heading over to my grandma’s house to help get everything set up for Thanksgiving. Once we finish up eating with her, my sister and I are going to my dad’s house to celebrate Thanksgiving with that side of our family.” – Katie Brubaker, Junior
– “This year we went to Christmas Wonderland in College Station, and had a small family dinner.” – Tori Black, Senior
– “It’s going to be a pretty chill day. I’m going to be making the mashed potatoes and Yorkshire pudding—which is amazing and you need to try—and everyone else is doing their own dishes. The Macy’s Day Parade will most likely be on in the morning while we’re cooking. Later, my sister and I are probably going to start watching 1899 and then eat lots of dessert.” – Renee Bakare, Junior
– “Me and my family are going out to eat at Flemings!” – Charlotte Karner, Senior
– “I’m flying to Lubbock, Texas to see my mom’s family! We are going to the Texas Tech vs. Oklahoma football game, and I’m very excited for this game. There are chances of snow, so I’m very hopeful for a snow-filled thanksgiving. My mom has three brothers so there is going to be a lot of family in Lubbock. I’m excited to catch up with everyone!” – Riley Weller, Senior
– “Just hanging out with family and friends and eating lots of food.” – Connor Quinn, Senior

A Reflection on Gratitude:
– “I am so grateful for my loved ones and best friends. They always support me in my faith, academic, and soccer journeys and are a firm foundation” – Kira Stevens, Senior
– “I am thankful to live in a safe community surrounded by positive family and friends.” – Kaitlyn Palacios, Senior
– “I’m grateful to have my grandpa with me. He. Has a heart condition leaving his heart working at only 20% full capacity. He’s had multiple heart attacks and I’m just so grateful and blessed that I can have him one more year.” – Monty Cruz, Junior
– “I’m most grateful for my job this year. Before starting junior year, I had heard all of the horror stories about how hard it was, but the hardships of it didn’t really hit me until all of my classes started picking up the pace halfway through the first nine weeks. No matter how exhausted I was from studying all day every day, I knew that I would celebrate the halfway point of the week (Wednesday) and Sundays with all of my favorite tiny humans at work. This, along with picking up two kids from school on Tuesdays, serves as a much appreciated reminder that school and grades do not mean everything in life, even though it can feel like it at times.” – Katie Brubaker, Junior
– “Being able to spend time with my whole family. We’ve been struggling with various issues this past year, so it’s extra special that we get to be together.” – Jett Smith, Junior
– “I am very grateful for all the new people I’ve met this year, for the classes I’m taking that help me build endurance, for all the scholarships and college admissions I’ve gotten. For my family and boyfriend for making my year special with all their support.” – Camila Tafuro, Senior
– “Being able to dance again, new friendships, and a growth mindset!” – Kayden Green, Senior
– “I’m grateful that I have been able to make new friends this year, and join new clubs that I enjoy” – Finley McDonald, Junior

Favorite Thanksgiving Foods:
– “My favorite thanksgiving foods are green beans and cranberry sauce, but my family also usually has Pernil which is my ultimate favorite” – Kira Stevens, Senior
– “Cream corn and green beans!! I’m not a huge turkey person, so I usually fill up on sides.” – Katie Brubaker
– “Cranberry sauce!! And of course mashed potatoes and gravy” – Kylene Foster, Senior
– “The ham is absolutely the best part!!! We go to Honey Baked Ham and get it from there every year. Also, we get this cheesecake that you can only find in the HEB in atascocita and I love it. I’m the only reason we get either of these items.” – Renee Bakare, Junior
– “Honey glazed ham, sweet potatoes with marshmallows, and stuffing!” – Charlotte Karner, Senior
– “Cornbread stuffing” – Jack Stanton, Senior
– “I love ROLLS!! Thanksgiving is the perfect excuse to eat rolls and rolls and rolls!” – Riley Weller, Senior
– “Green bean casserole and apple pie” – Connor Quinn, Senior

Unique Traditions:
– “We usually have Pernil instead of turkey to honor our Puerto Rican heritage!” – Kira Stevens, Senior
– “We always have a big party and dance to a variety of Hispanic music, for example bachata.” – Monty Cruz, Senior
– “Making hand turkeys out of pie crust to put on one of the pies!” – Katie Brubaker, Junior
– “We don’t really have any unique traditions, our Thanksgivings are pretty typical and low key” – Kylene Foster, Senior
– “Since my family and I are new to this tradition we get together and share awesome memories while we eat a delicious meal. We include “Pan de Jamon” which is a Venezuelan bread with ham, bacon, raisins and olives. We also prepare different desserts each year and share them with my aunt and uncle.” – Camila Tafuro, Senior
“Writing what we’re thankful for each year on a tablecloth” – Kayden Green, Senior
– “We play trivia at my grandma’s house for various prizes and when we are in town we run the TurkeyTrot!” – Riley Weller, Senior

It’s incredibly gratifying to hear from so many amazing friends and students who celebrate Thanksgiving in such fun, unique ways. On our well-deserved week off, it is wonderful to know that students are spending quality time with their loved ones and making memories around a great table of food and thankfulness.

To me, it is truly a reminder of the gift of friendship and community all around me! I am thankful to all those that shared their take on Thanksgiving and for those that continue to show kindness.

And now for my take on Turkey Day:
– “For my Thanksgiving plans, I’ll be filling up on bread rolls and pie morning and night! I’ll start off my day volunteering at the Turkey Trot with my awesome HOSA family. Then, I’ll be going to a morning family brunch in Kingwood and a family dinner later in the day.” – Isabella Espinosa, Senior
– “I am most grateful for the people I’m surrounded by who show me nothing but kindness, support, and what it means to have a positive impact on those around you. I am also very grateful for a good feast, good movies, and a good time!” – Isabella Espinosa, Senior
– “My favorite Thanksgiving foods have to be bread rolls and pumpkin pie!! I am an absolute menace and will steal as much pie crust as possible because it’s just that good.” – Isabella Espinosa, Senior
– “Our family usually plays Left, Right, Center with dollar coins on the line. After wrapping up the Thanksgiving meal and dishes, we’ll sit down and play a few big games before we go our separate ways to take naps, watch football, or play pool.” – Isabella Espinosa, Senior

To all of those reading this, I hope you’ve been able to have a great Thanksgiving, full of gratitude and celebration!