Vail Daily column: Thanksgiving leftovers without the calories |

Vail Daily column: Thanksgiving leftovers without the calories

Don’t you just love Thanksgiving leftovers? For me, it could be the full meal just reheated and enjoyed as if it were Thanksgiving all over again. It could also be turkey soup, turkey salad or turkey sandwiches — I love them all equally. And wouldn’t you agree that mashed potatoes and gravy taste even better on the second day?

As much as I enjoy those tasty reminders of the holiday, my favorite leftovers are the feelings of gratitude and appreciation for the very special people in my life and the blessings I have received.

Leftover gratitude

It sure does feel good when we can love on our friends and family members on Thanksgiving and shower them with the love and appreciation they deserve for standing by us, supporting us and loving us back. And I especially love the feeling I get when I can tell them how much they mean to me again on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Talk about amazing leftovers — it just doesn’t get any better than that.

Another benefit of gratitude leftovers is this — they are all calorie free. How awesome is that? We can partake in these tasty leftovers for days, weeks, months and years and never gain an ounce or an inch. As a matter of fact, with all of the energy we would use and excitement we would generate by actively pursuing things to be grateful for and people to appreciate, we may just lose a few ounces and inches.

As good as the turkey, mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce taste, after too many days in the refrigerator they will all eventually need to be consumed or thrown away.

That doesn’t happen with gratitude leftovers, as they can last as long as we are willing to recognize just how meaningful and important they are to our happiness and the health of our relationships.

Most of us are fed and fed well at Thanksgiving. We are nourished with tables and plates full of delicious food prepared by those closest to us with whom we have chosen to share the Thanksgiving holiday. Sooner or later, the initial meal and surplus goodies will be gone.

Lasting nourishment

But when we feed our attitude and spirit with the meals of gratitude and appreciation, we can live off of that nourishment for a very long time. That is why we need to remember that the leftovers don’t stop when Thanksgiving Thursday is just a few days gone in the rearview mirror. The star of the Thanksgiving meal is not the turkey, but rather the remembrance and acknowledgement of all that we have and for all of those we hold closest to us.

I truly hope that you had a warm, wonderful and happy Thanksgiving, and I hope that you will enjoy the calorie-free leftovers for a very, very long time. I would love to hear all about your leftovers at and thank you all for making this a better than good week.

Michael Norton is a strategic consultant, business and personal coach, motivational speaker and CEO of He writes a weekly motivational column for the Vail Daily.

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