Thanksgiving in Kansas 2021

Different This Year

Family photo for Thanksgiving 2021

Our family photo for Thanksgiving 2021, which we spent in Wichita, Kansas.

For Thanksgiving this year, things were a little different. It was too far to bring Jaylin home for a few days and then take him back. So instead, we decided to take Thanksgiving to Jaylin!

Laura found an Airbnb house for us to stay in for a few days in Wichita. That would allow us to all be together and have plenty of room, much more than if we had stayed in a hotel. We figured we could find plenty to do in Wichita for whatever downtime we had. As you can see, my parents also joined us, so it worked out well for all of us to be together.

And we also had a kitchen to cook Thanksgiving dinner, too. Laura cooked chicken casserole, stuffing, broccoli cornbread, corn, peas, and cranberry sauce. My dad made rolls. And we had brought along a strawberry cake for dessert. Needless to say, none of us went away hungry!

Plus a Few More

Group photo for Thanksgiving 2021

For our actual Thanksgiving meal, we had a couple of visitors, too. Two of Jaylin’s friends from school were also not able to go home for the Thanksgiving holiday, so Seth and Caleb joined us for dinner. It was good to have them with us, and Jaylin enjoyed the company. We had some great conversation at dinner, and then we all watched lots of football for the rest of the day. It was nice to have these two young men join us!


I am quite thankful for the traditions that we have. And it is good to have some family traditions that are almost sacred to you. There is nothing wrong with that at all.

However, it is also good to sometimes change things up a bit. That can make you examine your traditions and see why they are important to you. It can also remind you that tradition just for the sake of tradition does not really mean all that much.

Our tradition of getting together for a Thanksgiving meal each year is an important one. But that meal does not have to be at the same place each year. And it does not have to be the same food each year, either. The most important part of that tradition, as it turns out, is just being together as a family.

For a while, it looked like it would just be the three of us. But then my parents were able to join us, and that was good, too. We all commented at different times about how it was different from what we have been used to, but we all made it through this different Thanksgiving just fine.

And at whatever time in the future and for whatever reason, we are not all able to be together, that will be fine, too.

Traditions are good, but they are also not meant to last forever. Change things up sometimes. It can be good.

Now may our God and Father himself, and our Lord Jesus, direct our way to you, and may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, as we do for you. - 1 Thessalonians 3:11-12

About the Photos

If you are wondering, I took these photos by placing my camera on a tripod, which I had brought with me on this trip for just this occasion. I controlled the camera by using my phone as a remote, using Sony’s Imaging Edge app to control the camera. I had my phone in my hand behind Laura’s back, in case you were wondering. I had the app set to a 2-second delay, so that I could push the shutter button on my phone and then have time to actually look at the camera instead of at my phone.

I was going to take the photos inside. But it was such a nice day outside that Laura suggested we go out to the small front porch of the house for our photos. So we did.

And just a note: We were all standing on different steps, so you really can’t tell who is taller and who is shorter just based on these photos. In case you were wondering.

Photo: Each photo is a single JPEG exposure, processed in Luminar AI. Read more about photography tips, photo software, camera gear, and more at Steve’s Photography Tips.
Camera: Sony Alpha A7 II
Lens: Sony FE 28-70mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS Lens
Date: November 25, 2021
Location: Wichita, Kansas

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Burnsland is Steve Burns, with generous help from his lovely wife Laura. Steve is a husband, father, photographer, webmaster, writer, podcaster, artist, Christian. Steve enjoys sharing his photography, art, and stories through, from the Burnsland World Headquarters in Tennessee.