A Happy Thanksgiving 2012

Traditions change from year to year, and without attention there's the chance that some wonderful traditions will be lost altogether.  As guests remarked about our relatively "old fashion" Thanksgiving celebration, I was reminded of so many Thanksgivings of my childhood--festive house-filled events with relatives and friends.

I know that my family traditions will naturally change in the years to come, but I want to hold on to the essence of our celebrations, the care and love of family and friends.  I don't want to forget the stories of happy Thanksgivings because those stories will fuel my energy and interest in doing the work and preparation for family holidays in the future.

Thanksgiving 2012 was a particularly joyous Thanksgiving in our house.  Everyone that came brought a sense of appreciation, gratitude and care for one another.  We were all happy to take a break from our busy, diverse lives to celebrate together.  It's a Thanksgiving I don't want to forget.

We started the holiday at my son's football game.  Under gleaming sunlight, in the crisp, cool late fall air we cheered the Wayland Warriors onto a victory against their Thanksgiving day rival, Weston.  Upon returning to the house, we feasted on a large assortment of appetizers including crackers, dips, cheeses, sausages and olives.

Our relatively small house spilled over with relatives and friends, ages 3 to 82. Thirty guests greeted one another and told stories in all corners of the kitchen, living room, dining room and family room, while, with the help of many, we prepared the feast in the kitchen corner.

The dinner included roasted turkey, squash, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, green beans, stuffing, cranberry relish, cranberry sauce, gravy, breads and pies--lots of pies: apple, apple crumble, apple-cranberry, pumpkin, pumpkin mousse, and pecan with ice cream or whipped cream toppings.

About four hours later, most people started leaving.  My husband gave each family a holiday cd to listen to on their way home.  The remaining guests joined my family for a heated game of Scrabble where the winning words were "`qi" and "henhouse."  Later, the last of those who were still up watched the Patriots play to a victory against the New York Jets.

Today we'll take a nice hike in the fall woods and celebrate more with the leftovers and perhaps Spielberg's new film, Lincoln.

Americans' Thanksgivings most probably differ in so many ways.  Sharing the stories of our celebrations helps us to grow in understanding of one another, and to broaden our own celebrations in meaningful, memorable ways.

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