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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Thanksgiving memories

Thanksgiving - a time to reflect on blessings and express gratitude.  We usually connect the holiday with family get-togethers, time-honored traditions and eating copious amounts of food.  :)  But sometimes our circumstances are such that we have to make new traditions and experience new adventures.  In hindsight, these are usually the holidays we remember the most. 

One Thanksgiving, we had just moved into a new area, away from family and friends.  We thought we'd do something special with our five young children so we made reservations for a sumptuous Thanksgiving feast on a sternwheeler cruise down the Willamette River.  Everything went beautifully...until it was time for dinner.  Apparently, the dinner staff underestimated how much food they needed to feed all the famished Thanksgiving guests so by the time our deck was called into the dining room, almost all of the food was gone...literally!  The kids were getting cranky and we weren't too happy either.  There were no offers to compensate for the error and we returned to port, hungry and just a bit miffed.  We piled into our car and headed to our hotel when we noticed a Sizzler restaurant open for business.  That was just what we needed so we ended up well fed after all and had some new memories to remember the day we had Thanksgiving on the sternwheeler.

Another memorable Thanksgiving was the year before the sternwheeler adventure.  I had just given birth two days before Thanksgiving (to my fifth child) and again, we were in unfamiliar territory as my husband was working a year long contract in Pennsylvania.  I didn't feel well enough to make the entire Thanksgiving dinner for my little family so my husband volunteered to make everything...except for the pumpkin pies.  I made those and he did the rest.  And he did a marvelous job!  A man of many talents  :)

Moving on Thanksgiving day with eight children was another unique Thanksgiving!  The day before, I cooked a turkey, made fresh rolls and organized all the fixings for the holiday.  We started the next day with pumpkin pie for breakfast and ended the adventure 100 miles away, in our new home, eating a traditional thanksgiving dinner on the floor, picnic style.  That had to be one of my favorites!

Whatever circumstances you're in this year, enjoy the day, make new memories or find comfort in familiar ones.  Whether you're surrounded by tons of extended family or celebrating on a much smaller scale, take time to count your blessings and give thanks.


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