Thanksgivings in the past are so much fun to remember! I had 2 families that celebrated the holiday with family meals and fun with cousins!
Let's take a trip to the Aunties first.....Donegal Springs Road, Mount Joy, Pa..... a beautiful brick house with a wide front porch.....but the best part of getting there was to see who else was there. Of course as you entered the front room you got hugs and kisses from Aunt Fannie, Aunt Elizabeth and Aunt Emily.....I remember the smells as you got inside.....Maybe Uncle Ben's were there and of course that meant Don, Joyce and Ken.....or Uncle Luke's....Jay Leon and Don would be there....Herb's, Edward's, Wilbur's, Uncle Amos and Aunt Mabel, and maybe Elizabeth and cousins from Virginia....what fun we had! I remember oysters, turkey, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, cranberry relish, vegetables, relish trays and more.....that the wonderful pies, cake, cookies and that great ice cream.....as kids we would take a bowl and mix it good and eat it with pretzel sticks.....now that was fun! The adults would talk and we kids would play. Than we would eat again.
Now we go to Grandma Shearer's. I only really remember the meals after grandpa died. She would stretch that table so we would all fit there....Her turkey was perfection! So golden brown. Her dressing the best with saffron threads and the grave was the greatest! Uncle Bobby's lived down the lane so you knew they would be there....Jean and RD were precious to me and what fun we had in that basement....toys, shuffle board and games....Now if it were really special the cousins were there from Florida.....Uncle Harold's....Mary Lynn, Gave and Beth~ Grandma made the best opera fudge and what a treat! Do you know my grandma's favorite part of the turkey was the neck....to each his own!
Than I had my family and I remember each Thanksgiving.....some were with us alone but many with the Kemp/Blocker Family and talk about fun! They were are extended family since we lived away from our Pa. family. They took us in and filled the void we had for missing our family and cousins...we did go home to Pa. the my grandma's and to the Engle Family. Each gave my kids a feeling of family, love and tradition. Than came John and his family....how Nana loved to serve holiday meals in style. We miss her too and John's 2 sisters.
Thanksgiving to me is the best holiday.....I love fall and love family and the traditions. We each need to stop and hold those we love very close to us. We need to build our family traditions and above all we need to stop and give thanks to our Heavenly Father for all his love and all His grace. We need to be thankful for Salvation and a roof over our heads.....for the food we have and the comforts we take for granted.Life can throw us curves but we must take this time to count our blessings~
John and I find ourselves alone today and yes, mom is here but bitter and she chooses to stay in her room. I have cooked a turkey that was a gift and as we speak the dressing (with saffron), vegetables are roasting, sweet potatoes browning, and cranberry sauce ready. We received a pecan pie and that is our special treat!
John is struggling today with his chiari and sprinx......he has a awful headache and has had to lay down a lot.....but I am thankful I have him! We have each other and that is a great gift! We face each day hoping for a treatment that will help and researching all we can. When you are without a job and insurance few want to see you. I know the answer will come.
I have the blessing of homeschooling 2 boys to bring on some income and what a blessing! Yes, it stretches me but it is income.....They have adopted us and I love that!
That brings me to last Sat. night.....the boys family invited us to their family Thanksgiving and I made mom go.....What a loving group of Mennonite people....just like the Aunties and grandma's and we were guests of honor with all the love we needed! This was the first social time we had since we came to Virginia. Do you know what that meant to us? One of the Son in Laws was the cook at VMRC when Mom and dad lived there. Fred was good for her. The only sad thing was she forgot what dad had when he had polio and dimly seemed to remember the hospital stay. She did not think he was in the hospital 5 weeks. She does not want to go out again but she may just have too. I saw how much I missed fellowship.
Mom came out and ate with just a bit ago because I refused to take her a tray. She went back quickly and had little to say. She would not allow me to remind her of the things I mentioned here....she said that is all dead to her now....if only she could enjoy the life she has. She told us she seldom has enjoyed gatherings....I long for them! How I miss daddy!
Here are a few prayer requests....
1. Wisdom to know how to handle mom with John getting worse.
2. That disability will come through.
3. That I am able to stretch the Food Stamps as that is our only food money to use.
4. That we may find help for John....someone has to be able to help.
5. We can some how make the rent this month.
6. That I can deal with the pain I feel from being away from my kids. I need that support.
I awoke with this some on my mind today....maybe you can sing it with me....I remember Aunt Emily singing this.
HE GIVETH MORE GRACE
Annie J. Flint
He giveth more grace as our burdens grow greater,
He sendeth more strength as our labors increase;
To added afflictions He addeth His mercy,
To multiplied trials he multiplies peace.
When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,
When we reach the end of our hoarded resources
Our Father’s full giving is only begun.
His love has no limits, His grace has no measure,
His power no boundary known unto men;
For out of His infinite riches in Jesus
He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.
Yes, He gives and He gives and gives again! That makes life worth living!Happy Thanksgiving!