A New Thanksgiving Gratitude Challenge!

I have been making Thanksgiving dinner for so many friends and family for most of the past fifty years of my life. It usually turns into a bit of a stress-fest trying to get everything done and on the table at the same time. When it’s time to make the gravy I am usually at wit’s end and exhausted! I guess I should add I am very controlling and bossy in the kitchen…

So last night Mike laid down this challenge to me: Let him do it all. He has done it before, before he met me, he reassured me. This blew my mind as I started taking it in fully. Could I let go of that much control? Could I trust him to do it right? This all blew my mind, because it showed me exactly what a control freak I still am. Did I trust Mike to do it well and do it “right?”

Of course, we do need to take into consideration that I am now on oxygen fulltime and even then sometimes short of breath. Since I first saw it, I have related too well to that new anti-smoking ad about starting in October if you are in charge of fixing Thanksgiving dinner this year. I have to admit it made me laugh because that was me! And no, I never did smoke, just crappy lungs, which no MDs so far can figure out.

As it turns out, I cannot turn the whole affair over to Mike, but he will be doing most of the work. I feel I need to make my cornbread dressing and the pie. Funny how we slowly give up control, and only when it becomes almost impossible to do it all yourself!

Now for one of my favorite stories about Thanksgiving. When I was in my late 20s I went to Taipei Taiwan to study Chinese language at the Stanford Center. Thanksgiving can be tough in a place where nobody even knows what a pumpkin or a turkey are. Soon after I got there in September, my grandmother died and I could not go home for her funeral. My brother-in-law did something really kind for me that year. He had his grade school kids make me Thanksgiving cards and sent them to me. They were all so cute and welcome, but one of them still comes to my memory every year.

This kid had drawn a turkey and along the bottom he wrote the words:

“I am a turkey too yum yummy yum yum!”

to be sung to the tune of Little Drummer Boy!

“I am grateful for what I am and have. My Thanksgiving is perpetual.” — Henry David Thoreau

Our Small Town Thanksgiving!

With all of the bad news, I would like to share something good…

thanksgiving dinnerThis Thanksgiving we are new in town with no one to share our holiday with. I read in the local paper about a free Thanksgiving feast at our county community center.

At first, because I come from the big city, I assumed this would be only for the homeless, but when I read about it again, they were clearly inviting everyone.

Next I assumed it would be a mob scene, because such an event would surely be quite crowded if it were offered in Fort Collins, our previous home town.

Come to find out, none of my misgivings came to pass. The dinner wasn’t crowded at all. There was no line, the food was the best I’ve ever had, and everyone in that room full of strangers welcomed us warmly!

We even ran into a small group of our future neighbors from up at Navajo Ranch. So nice making new friends, and they invited us to their upcoming Christmas Party.

Small town living continues to surprise us, and always in a good way… such great inspiration to go home and put up our holiday decorations, after all it was 55 degrees outside!