Generally speaking, I’m not a person who does simple. If there’s a keep it simple path and a drive yourself and everyone around you nuts path, I’m inevitably trailblazing the latter. The day before Thanksgiving was spent prepping the recipes, but in order to get to that point, I made 3 trips to the grocery store inevitably forgetting something from the trip prior. All the while, popping the whip at the husband and children to clean up their designated area in the house.
Thanksgiving morning came early. The husband and I straightened up the house a little, mixed up the final ingredients for the sourdough stuffing and bacon-wrapped green beans and stuffed mushrooms and sweet potato soufflé (oh my!), with one last trip to the grocery store in the midst of all that cooking. I think the excitement of hosting Thanksgiving lunch for the first time in our home of 2+ years made it all worth the added efforts.
Thanksgiving Day dawned bright, warm and sunny….we were thankful. We enjoyed our traditional 12 or so hours of feasting, laughing, playing, talking, walking, singing and music making first at our house with the Roach’s and later with the Lacy’s at the ranch.
We gathered around our Thanksgiving table, extended by our kitchen table, and Pete gave a tear-filled thankful sharing that made my heart burst with gladness. I’ve never heard the man pray like that before. You know one that REALLY pulled on the heart strings. I mean, I had been up since 7 cooking and I had already had 2 glasses of wine, so I was pretty well greased for some sappy stuff to bring me to tears.
Our nephew, Breckin, discovered a liking for sweet potato soufflé (yay me!) while our son, Reef, munched away on Wendy’s pumpkin cookies. Pete and I breathed a collective sigh of relief that one more food has been added to Reef’s very limited and beige repertoire….plus (pumpkin! healthy!…right?). Otherwise, he is purely a meat and potatoes man. Err, wee man.
It was indeed another perfect Thanksgiving Day. Thank you, family!
And now for what I am thankful for…(I have several days of catching up so here goes).
· Gracious and generous family and friends who come together to help us to create picture perfect memories, year after year. Our Thanksgivings are Norman Rockwell paintings come to life, and I appreciate them so much. I love that my children have a stockpile of experiences like these in their memory banks.
· Family and friends who are foodies! I may be biased but I find it hard to believe that many people enjoy a more delicious and varied spread than we do on Thanksgiving.
· The fact that nearly every member of my immediate family was able to celebrate with us. Nobody had to work on Thanksgiving Day, and nobody was sick (hooray!)
· Glorious sunny weather and the opportunity for my family to get out and enjoy it. On Thanksgiving Day there was basketball, pogo-sticking, running and jumping…and all of it OUTSIDE.
· Laughter. I am so blessed to know so many people who understand my weird, irreverent sense of humor and are not offended by it, and who regularly make me laugh until I cry. Life without laughter is not a life worth living and I am very, very wealthy in the currency of laughter. My smile muscles are always the most tired part of me.
· The fact that I have never been a witness to the darker side of Black Friday.
· Left-overs! No cooking for a full 3 days? Yup, this works for me. Turkey sandwiches on ginormous dinner rolls, topped with fresh avocado, havarti cheese and mayo kept my stomach content for days. Not to forget, leftover chocolate pie from Goode’s.
· Traditions. Have I mentioned this before? Probably. But it bears repeating. I love them. They make life meaningful, they make memories. I am thankful to have friends and family who indulge me in my love of traditions.
· Mrs. Meyers Basil Kitchen cleaner. It turns drudgery into a spa like experience (at least for my nose).
· Pineapple. Without it, Reef would probably starve.
· Chocalate. It deserves a special mention I think. Chocalate is a sure sign that God loves his children. 1-2-3 made by both my M-I-L and step-mother, is especially worthy of gratitude. Especially since my kids love it enough to make a meal of it. Oh, yes I did! (There was a bit of an incident last year whereupon someone else who shall remain unnamed took it upon themselves to eat the leftovers without my help..and the family has been helping me to compensate for that great wrong ever since). J
· Functional indoor plumbing. Because really, how did/do people live without it? I don’t know and I never want to. I can honestly say I give thanks almost every time I get into a warm shower. Add flushing toilets to that and none of us should ever complain again.
· Waking up to a much cleaner house than I fell asleep to last night. Thank you dear husband. A wife can receive no greater gift.
· The fact that most of my worries and irritations are about things that really and truly don’t matter in the grand scheme of things. It is a great luxury to have most of the worries that I have.
Thanksgiving has really inspired me to live a more thankful life all the time and to see beauty in the simple blessings that I take for granted every day.
Enjoy a few photos on me!