I was thinking about Thanksgiving and longing for the days when all the family was home. It was a lot of work to fix everything and make the proper feast which involved days of preparation.
Sometimes I made fresh monkey bread which is a heavy potato bread that was enormously popular with the family and friends. Other times I just made hot rolls, but by jiminy, I never made brown and serve rolls. (I declare proudly while I eye the package of brown and serve rolls now sitting on my countertop.)
Oddly enough, one of my most vivid memories of Thanksgiving started out pretty bleak. My little brother Stevie had passed away two weeks before he turned six in June. Mom had a tough time keeping a job because she, frankly, was having a nervous breakdown. She frequently fixed a large pot of macaroni and dumped a can of chili in it. We’d eat that for days.
Milk was a luxury. I was probably spoiled because we bounced back and forth between parents and my grandparents’ dairy farm where we had fresh, whole milk with every meal, but more about that another time.
Thanksgiving was coming up, but it seemed to me at the time we didn’t have much to be thankful for. There was simply no money for a Thanksgiving dinner.
Then, one night, a group of people showed up with several boxes of food. You would have thought Gary, my remaining little brother, and I had been dropped into the largest toy store in the world. We went crazy looking at all the food.
Mom cried and hugged everyone. Our benefactors were people in the Lion’s Club who had heard about us and wanted to help.
God bless the Lions.
When they left, we handed Mom the groceries so she could put them up. I probably didn’t stick my tongue out at that one lonely can of chili sitting on the shelf, but I wanted to.
In one of the boxes was a very large jar of peanut butter. Mom and I both sat down and cried when we saw that. Stevie was crazy about peanut butter. He used to cry because we couldn’t afford it and there sat this huge jar of peanut butter that would last us for months.
And so, what was looking like a pretty grim Thanksgiving turned into one of our best.
Years later I am often reminded to be thankful for the small things and the large. The three jars of peanut butter in my cabinet, the peacefulness in the country, friends.
Today, I’d like to share a bit more on what I am thankful for. I have good friends in the gaming world and out. Just as the Lions probably didn’t really know what a real miracle they were, so do our friends probably not realize they are also miracles. They can be the beacon of light someone needs when they are in a very dark place. A smile, a joke, a friendly invitation to go do something. Sometimes it just takes one simple act of kindness to turn someone’s day around.
To the people in WoW, my guild mates, my friends, strangers I don’t know yet, thank you. You make more of a difference than you know and I am very thankful for you. To the Pie People in particular, you are spectacular and I truly appreciate you.
I’m thankful for my writing friends and in particular, the Gnomies, my writing group. What a blessing you all are. Even though many of you are working on manuscripts of your own, you are always truly generous with your time and advice. You don’t “eeeew, that’s horrible” when I write a graphic scene that really is horrible. You study it and tell me I need more blood over there. Well, y’all did “eeew” about the horse tongue scene, but that was admittedly icky.
I have an opportunity to do what I love, write. Sometimes it makes me want to pull my hair out. More than one tear has been shed over these stories, but, thankfully, no one has told me to stop writing and give up.
I’m thankful for my health. It’s been kind of an uphill, depressing battle at times this last two years, but it could be so very much worse. What is going on now is temporary, so yes, thank you, Lord, for my health.
I’m blessed with three healthy sons, daughters-in-law and my beautiful grandbabies. What a true miracle it is just to have healthy children. I still have my parents.
Cody and Beth
Logan and will
I’m thankful for our military and first responders who so often have to spend their holidays away from their loved ones. God bless you all.I’m thankful to live in America even though our politicians drive me insane at times.
Lastly, I am thankful that I really am happy. That in itself is a remarkable gift and I don’t underestimate how lucky I am.
Now, since we come back to Thanksgiving and thoughts of food, let me share some recipes I posted in the past.
I hope you enjoy them and realize how much I appreciate all of you. I pray your day has been blessed.