Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate and reflect on our blessings.

Like many of you, I rarely take the time in my busy daily routines to stop and be thankful. Thanksgiving, however, is a time when I do pause to celebrate, reflect and give thanks.

With the loss and challenges we have faced individually and as a community these past two years, I know it is difficult for many people to be thankful this Thanksgiving. During my family’s Thanksgiving meal, we always go around the table and each person has to say at least one thing, no matter how small, for which they are grateful this year.

One of the things I will share this year is that I am thankful to live in this beautiful community with all of you. We have an abundance of community engagement, volunteerism and philanthropy; we recently opened our new community center; the city is offering in-person services and programs again; and our vaccination rate for residents 12 and older is 95%, and we now have access to vaccines for children 5-11 years old.

During the past two years, we have seen our residents, including students, find ways to help and support one another, and we are fortunate to have community partners like Community Services Agency and the Community Health Awareness Council providing needed services to our residents.

We are also slowly and safely bringing back many of our Los Altos traditions, such as the Festival of Lights Parade.

I am also thankful that we live in a community that values civility. Civility refers to when individuals are polite and courteous to one another in behavior, speech and writings, even when they disagree, and it is not a surprise that a breakdown in civility can undermine our democracy and local governmental processes.

As I said to a group recently, in Los Altos we talk a lot about preserving the character, and there are many things worth preserving here. But ensuring that we continue to live in a community where we respect one another, stand for the truth and look for opportunities to lift each other up is special and truly what will set us apart from other communities and something we should all work together to preserve.

Although we will continue to face many challenges over the next several months, I hope that as we celebrate Thanksgiving this year, we can all take the time to reflect on our blessings, no matter how small, and to be grateful that we live in a city that is indeed a great place to live and raise a family.

Happy Thanksgiving, and please be safe!

Neysa Fligor is mayor of Los Altos.