As November rolls around, we’re anxiously awaiting the approach of Thanksgiving, the holiday season and time spent with our loved ones. The winding down of the year always brings about a time of reflection for us—remembering everything we’ve done or accomplished in months past; looking back on turkey disaster stories, mornings watching the Thanksgiving Day parade, watching football or afternoons spent curled up on the couch after one too many pieces of pie; thinking of the people, experiences and things we’ve been blessed with in the last year. As we press pause on the hustle and bustle of life putting together a monthly magazine, we’re able to look back on the past year and, most meaningfully, the stories that have made what we do possible including the ones we have included in this issue:

“Volunteer is a Verb” – A feature about how volunteerism impacts a community, plus six spotlights on smaller nonprofits that could use a boost.

“Retreat to The Swag” – A travel story on The Swag Resort, which has been voted “Most Romantic Hideaway” and No. 2 “Top Resort in the South.”

“Practice Gratitude” – Melissa Ballard’s advice on how practicing gratitude helps us spend less money.

“Five Ways to Give Back” – Suggestions on how to enter the holiday season with a spirit of giving.

We also take this chance to think of those less fortunate and encourage you this giving season to donate to local organizations or charities. We hope that as you read this issue, you—like us—find inspiration in the lives and experiences of your neighbors and the connections that have been made. We hope to see you around, and please say thank you to our marketing partners.

Happy Thanksgiving, Knoxville!

From the staff at West Knoxville Lifestyle