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    Thanksgiving is a time for families to gather and express gratitude for the blessings in their lives. As this celebration has evolved, the definition of family has broadened and the concept of a “chosen or intentional family” has gained prominence. People have come to recognize that family is not solely defined by birth but also by the connections we form with those who come to be an important part of our lives. In honor of all the different types of families gathering this holiday, let’s explore the idea of chosen family and the joy these people bring to our lives.

    Traditionally, the term family most often referred to the biological relationships we shared with relatives. However, societal shifts and changing norms have given rise to the realization that family can be, and often is, chosen. Whether through shared experiences or common values, people are creating bonds that go beyond genetics. This evolution has paved the way for a more inclusive celebration of Thanksgiving, where the dinner table is not restricted to blood relatives but also extends to those we have chosen to share our lives with. 

    Intentional families come in various forms, reflecting the diverse nature of human connections. Friends and colleagues can become people that we have grown to care about and love. Thanksgiving provides an opportunity to acknowledge the integral role each of these people plays in our lives and express appreciation for the love that transcends traditional family ties.

    As all types of families gather for Thanksgiving, they bring a blend of shared traditions. These may include recipes, games or personal expressions of gratitude. Celebrating Thanksgiving becomes a collaborative effort, reflecting the collective relationships forged by individuals who have chosen to be there for each other through the good times and the bad.

    Thanksgiving is a time to express gratitude. For many, this day is a celebration of all the different types of relationships we have in our lives. As we gather around our tables this holiday season, let’s celebrate not only the ties of blood but also the intentional bonds that make our lives richer and more fulfilling. In embracing the concept of intentional family, we discover that Thanksgiving is not just about abundance on our plates but also about the abundance of love, understanding and support that surrounds us, reminding us that family is where the heart finds its home.

    We at aos are thankful for you today and every day. Happy Thanksgiving, Friends! 

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