Thanksgiving. The Attitude of Gratitude. And we had plenty for which to be grateful again this year. Donna Ruth loves this time of year – Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s. She loves the decorating and co0king and all the family-time that is a part of the season. Thanksgiving was certainly no exception. DR prepared for several days to get together all the right things for ‘the meal’ we would have on Thanksgiving Day. It was her ‘turn’ to have the family at our house and she was busy as a bee getting it all arranged.
Of course, I had to tidy up some of my ‘stuff’ too so there would be a place to eat and room to sit. Sometimes I am a little bit too loosely organized with my music and projects and the big dining room table is such a good place to work! But I managed to clear up the vast majority of the instruments and other stuff, at least for a few days, to make room for the celebration. I wasn’t unhappy to do that for sure, so don’t get me wrong. The benefit was well worth the effort!
Donna Ruth’s younger brother, Glen and his wife, Lyn and oldest son T.J. would be coming for the late afternoon/evening meal. T.J. had to work late at his job so we moved to a ‘dinner time’ plan. He has certainly grown into a responsible and creative young man. Besides being a dedicated employee at his work, he has developed a love for WOOD and woodworking which couldn’t have pleased me more. I have always loved working with wood and it is so nice to see a young guy appreciate the grain, age and character of a piece of wood. He made a really cool cutting board for us last Christmas that is definitely a work of art. Speaking of art, he is pretty good at that too. AND he plays bass, so what else could I ask for in a nephew! Just keep supplying some wood now and then for presents at birthday and Christmas. Makes it easy to ‘shop’ for him!
Their younger son, Neil couldn’t be with us and we missed having him there but we will plan to have some time around Christmas to catch up with him. He’s also become quite the ‘music man’ of the group and sings like a bird, well not exactly, but you know what I mean. Nice to have some family in my life like that too. Being an only child can be lonely at times but not around DR’s family, thank goodness. Another little spot of gratitude.
Glen was born about the time Donna Ruth and I first met in the early 1960’s and since we have been together ever since, he is like the real brother I never had. I couldn’t have picked a better brother anyway if I had been given the chance. Time around Glen has always been fun time and while he has certainly grown to be a responsible person and great Dad for his sons, he has always kept his sense of humor and loves having a good time. He can break away from computer technology to go fishing and camping any day! And there’s never a dull moment when he’s around. And that is nice. He is such an important person to our son, Grant who credits him with his love for wrestling. And they did get to go to some good wrestling matches over the years. I remember one time we picked them up from an event and they had shouted so much, neither one could do much more than a whisper. It was an oddly quiet ride back home that night!
Glen and Lyn met back in college days as I remember. Seems like a long time ago and yet only yesterday. Funny how that works. I do remember times when they were in college and came to visit. And several of us had red hair back then! Now, some of us don’t have much hair at all or what we have is gray! But that’s just patina! Lyn has always been quite the healthcare giver person. She fit right into the family with DR’s Mom being a nurse too. It has been a good time all these years, this being the 54th time we have carved a turkey together. Well, let see, Lyn hasn’t been here that many times, but who’s counting! She has been there enough that I can’t remember much when she wasn’t.
So, Thomas, Grant, DR and I all enjoyed a great day with Glen, Lyn and T.J. and of course, Jitterbug, who was working diligently to keep all the crumbs and morsels picked up from the ‘accidental’ drops that came his way. While I carved the turkeys, he stood close by for support and encouragement! It was a big day for him too. We found him in his bed sound asleep pretty early. So many people for lap sitting, petting and holding it was just overwhelming! Even Jitterbug was grateful.
There were TWO turkeys, one baked and one smoked (both great too!), homemade stuffing (tasted like my Mom’s always did), sweet potato casserole (like DR and Glen’ Mom used to make every year), smashed potatoes too-da-la (as our kids call them, but that’s a whole new story), cranberry sauce (cut on the little ‘rings’ just like Glen like to do it as a kid), broccoli casserole, fresh-frozen green beans from our garden (and boy were they good!), gravy, tolls, homemade pickles and snacks (like we needed snacks!), deviled eggs, and plenty of sweet tea and lemonade (mixed the way I like it). What a meal. Glen, besides being good with computer stuff, has become known as the PIE MAN and brought his versions of pumpkin and pecan pie. Oh well, there went the diet! Speaking of the ‘brother I never had, Glen has always been in my life and couldn’t be much better than a real brother. He made a special pecan pie for me with a pecan flower on a stem. I took a picture it was so cool. He is a great guy and sometimes I forget he isn’t my biological brother but he IS my real brother! No matter how you want to figure that. I pushed him in a stroller and put together bicycles and other toys at Christmas just like he was family. No difference.
I spoke some about ‘gratitude’ before as the most important attitude we could possess. Well, today was clearly an example of that concept. What more could one hope for than to have good family who could laugh and love together for a celebration of Thanksgiving. It was a good day. It has been a good year. All of us are well and happy. That’s where gratitude comes around. Something money can’t buy. Something some people don’t have. And something some have never known. But in our little family, GRATITUDE is a big word that can scarcely satisfy the meaning of what it is like to be in this place, at this time, in this life. I am truly blessed and so is this family. That’s nice to be able to say.
We all went to bed GRATEFUL and satisfied that we were loved and have been loved for a long time. You can’t buy that either. It just IS or IS NOT and in our case, IT IS! And I am grateful. I hope you had a HAPPY THANKSGIVING. I know we did and are looking forward to more good times in a few weeks for CHRISTMAS. That reminds me, it’s time to break out the trees and Christmas decorations. Have to get busy on those wooden gift boxes DR wants for the front yard. GRATEFUL!