Food and Thanksgiving--Give it to me
Loveys, who doesn't love Thanksgiving? All the yummy food with no pressure of presents. Don't get me wrong, I like presents. I especially like Christmas trees and Christmas music. I like gingerbread houses and holiday movies and all that magic. And more than anything, I love Baby Jesus and the manger and the truth that saves us.
But before that loveliness, we get Thanksgiving. I love it. I love turkey. I love my Mimi's dressing recipe. I love cranberry sauce from a can (don't judge). I love mashed potatoes and rolls. I love gravy (I just haven't learned how to make it very well). Now, this Thanksgiving will be different for us. I'm only able to hobble around. Lily has become the most active crawler in the universe and wants to be everywhere (making us a teeny bit crazy). It may just be my little precious family at home this year with our mobility issues (me not moving and Lily moving too much). But still. There will be food. And I will eat it and be thankful.
Food and thanksgiving. They go together. During the holidays, I know my family gives to the local food bank more than usual. For one, it's easy. There are bins everywhere, there are churches taking food (we even had a youth group knock on our door and ask for canned goods for the food bank. It can't get easier than that!). And there's something about giving thanks as you sit at a table filled with warm food--and knowing that so many are hungry. We pray for the less fortunate. We give food, whether it's to the food bank, or a check to meals on wheels (I love that organization), or buying dinner plates for the rescue mission or taking food to a family who need a little help.
Because we should.
Because being thankful should go hand-in-hand with helping others. Because food sustains us and gives us life. It comforts us and keeps us strong. Food brings us together. It's something we all need. You guys know how much I love dinner parties and tea parties and social gatherings. Food is always the common denominator. Appetizers or entrees. Dessert or breakfast. We come together and feel nourished.
Having been down for the count since my foot surgery, I've had friends bring meals. To me, it's so special. It's loving people by way of lasagna. :)
I mean it. And there's something awesome about eating a meal made by others. New flavors and textures. Something they like to make that they want to share with you. Nancy's chicken and rice. Evan's casserole. Tammy's enchilada soup. Marina's enchiladas. Nicole's lasagna. Danielle's pasta. Renya's chicken and mushroom and wild rice soup. Krista's Italian beef with rolls. Shari's taco soup. Even friends from afar! Jodi had Chinese food sent to us. Sara brought me gourmet cupcakes. Michelle and Laura sent me delicious tea. Not to mention my mother! Cooking breakfast for my kids every day. Bringing me lunch upstairs when I couldn't walk at all. (A special thanks to all these fabulous women. Really. My cup runneth over.)
Friendship and food. They're like peanut butter and jelly.
We used to spend Thanksgiving at my Mimi's house in Lufkin, Texas. Food and family. Those are my memories. Good food plus family equals love. When you're hungry, there's nothing more satisfying than someone giving you food. To me, that's why giving and thankfulness are so closely interwoven. Because one is the natural result of the other.
And both bring peace and contentment to our souls. The older I get, the more I feel that if we can fill ourselves up with peace and contentment, we're less ruffled by the little things that happen around us. Uncaring things that are said to us or about us. We let those go. Frustrated by our spouse and children. We take a breath (maybe a hot shower. Maybe a glass of merlot!), and we move on the next day and give grace. There are big, difficult moments we face in our lives. All of us go through them. Those are hard enough. Especially when it comes to the people we love, a little grace goes a long way. I want to be less ruffled and more peaceful.
It's Thanksgiving today, loveys.
Time to be thankful.
What a wonderful thing.
It was a super cold day here in Colorado. We hunkered down and had the fire going. The kids played in the snow for just a little bit, then had hot chocolate. I cooked a big dinner and thought about my grandmother as I made cornbread dressing. I can't make cornbread dressing without missing my Mimi. She was irreplaceable. My sister and brother-in-law came over later and spent the evening with us. The guys watched football, and Sara and I talked and laughed after the kids went to bed.
Food and family. Holidays are made up of these things. Then there's pecan pie and whipped cream. Football on TV. Christmas music during dinner. The sound of my kids talking about what they're thankful for as we sit at the table (not to mention Lincoln bursting into tears and exclaiming that he wants a baby brother. Oh dear).
I could watch snow falling for most of the day through the window, but we were snug in side. My husband and I and our children sat down to a traditional Thanksgiving feast, where we ate and laughed and talked (Linc cried, but there's always a little chaos mixed in!).
These are beautiful moments, lovey. Hold on to them. We don't get them back and we're not promised more. But they are so beautiful while we have them. Gather together and give grace (and accept grace). Love the ones around you.
Be thankful more than anything.