Countdown to Thanksgiving

This is a Thanksgiving morning long, long ago. Kids are in bed with my mom. From l. to r. my eldest daughter Dana (who is now the grandmother of 5, my nephew, Doug, he's the grandpa to 5 also, my son Mark who is no longer with us, second daughter Dana and they most happy Grandma. No one loved their grandchildren as fiercely as my mom.

And there's my dad attacking the turkey with a stainless steel knife he mad with his own hands. He made us one too.

I've been thinking about past Thanksgivings. We often traveled from Oxnard to Los Angeles to my parents for Thankgiving. In those days except for helping set the table, and putting the food on, helping with dishes afterwards, I really didn't have any responsibilities at all.

When more kids arrived in my family, I had some Thanksgivings at my house with all the family coming to Oxnard. I did most of the cooking, but my Auntie, who is now 100, brought wonderful green beans with mushrooms and candied sweet potatoes. Later, when we moved to Springville, where we are now, I continued to be the cook for Thanksgiving.

When my sis moved to Las Vegas and took mother with her, things changed. I was still the cook, but only my family came for dinner. (Plenty of people, I can assure you.)

The last few years I've cooked one Thanksgiving and then hubby and I traveled to my daughter Lori's for the other. (Great, because she's a wonderful cook and I didn't have to do anything but stuff myself.)

This year I'm cooking again. Not sure exactly who all is coming except my middle girl and her husband and their two daughters and off spring, my son and maybe we might see his two sons, not sure. Think it comes to around 15 people more or less. Daughter is bringing some of the dishes as is one granddaughter. I do everything much simpler these days. No fancy dishes--paper plates work just fine and no one has to wash them. There's enough to do with the clean up afterwards.

On Saturday we took another granddaughter and her husband out for a Thanksgiving dinner. They are getting ready to travel all the way to North Carolina to start a new life. He's been offered a great job and she hopes to go to school full-time to achieve her goal of becoming a 3rd grade teacher. I'm going to miss her a lot because she's always been a part of our holiday celebrations--but I'm happy for her to have this new adventure. Isn't that what makes life exciting, new adventures?

I have always had a lot to be thankful for, not just on Thanksgiving. I grew up in a loving family. We weren't rich by any means, but we had nice house and enough to eat, lots of friends, and went to great neighborhood schools.

Now I'm a great grandmother with a loving a supportive husband, have traveled to many interesting places, had several careers, and my dream of being a published author came true in 1982. I've got wonderful memories and hope to create more.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.


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