For more than two decades, JM and I share Thanksgiving with a group of Holiday Orphans. Like us, their family is too far away to visit, so we celebrate with this extended family of dear people.
One couple loves to roast turkey and mash potatoes. Aren't we lucky! We bring a ton of sweet taties and green-bean almondine casserole. Others contribute dessert, wine, salads, rolls, and more. Everyone pitches in for the feast.
I’m all for change and doing things in different ways, but I love the customs of this holiday. One year, we brought different side dishes, but everybody missed the tried-and-true favorites. Isn’t it funny how these little things grow into cherished traditions? Yesterday, I was listening to conversations at the salon as I got my hair cut. People recited their Thanksgiving menu and discussed every aspect of their family gathering with the reverence of a sacred litany.
In fact, I thought I had everything I needed for our turkey day meal on Thursday, but, alas --- I’m off to the market in search of lemon pepper for the green-beans almondine. Fortunately, everything’s ready for the sweet potatoes. Whew…..gotta keep with tradition!
I also need to dig out timers and extension cords to set candles in the windows. Their glow that begins Thanksgiving evening kicks off our winter holiday season. And then there are gifts to buy and wrap, cards to address (yep, still do personalized, snail-mail greeting cards), decorations to put up inside the house and outdoors in the garden, donations for the food drive, practice for the big community Messiah concert….the list goes on. I could easily make myself go crazy trying to get everything done.
But I don’t want to be a captive of the ‘list.’ I want to take time to savor the here and now. The traditions. The spirit of giving and gratitude of this beautiful season is even more important to cherish as our world faces uncertainty and violence from extremists and evil.
Years go by too fast. It couldn’t have been that long ago that Mama and Grandma worked their magic on our Thanksgiving feast that started at 1:00 with anti-pasta and ended with dessert at 5:00 … after intermissions between the pasta and main meal. Or the way Paw-paw Pete captivated us at the dinner table with gentle stories of life during the Depression. Now all are just sweet memories.
So before the checkout line at the market snakes out the door, I want to stop and enjoy this gift of time during the season of gratitude before me in the here and now.
And a special, huge thanks to YOU for supporting Sweet T, Fuzzy and me. It’s been a wild ride, and we are beyond grateful.
Wishing you and yours a lovely Thanksgiving Holiday
and a sweet November's final weekend.
On a personal note ...
I'm taking time off from writing and blogging to enjoy a lovely long holiday family and friends.
If you're going over the river and through the woods to Grandma's house, or just relaxing around the corner, stay safe and cozy.
Catch you next on Cat's Corners the in December.
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