Thankful for Family Gatherings

One of the best things about holidays is the chance for families to gather together–usually around a delicious meal that includes traditional dishes and perennial favorites. Lively conversation and friendly banter spice the gathering. It’s a chance to visit with one another; for some family members who come from afar, it may be the only or one of the few times to see relatives during the year.

This was a unique year for me. It was the first year I spent a holiday with my husband’s family. It was good to get to know them better and experience the obvious love and delight they take in each other’s presence. I got to sample my mother-in-law’s holiday staple dishes–creamed onions and carrots and turnips and my father-in-law’s pumpkin cheesecake. I was able to bring one of our family’s traditional holiday favorite dishes to the table, too. After dinner there was more conversation, games, and grazing on the leftover desserts. It has been a good day.

Of course, it was sad not to be with my parents or my oldest daughter, but one can’t be everywhere at once. I am thankful to be welcomed into my husband’s family and made to feel right at home. I am thankful my youngest daughter is having a good time with her step-siblings and new relatives. I am truly thankful to be able to pick up a cell phone and call my parents and to use instant chat to talk with my daughter in Korea.Ā  Most of all I am thankful to be alive today, to be able to enjoy good food and fine company, a sunny, crisp November day, and the beauty of God’s good creation. Blessings abound!

I hope you were able to find moments of blessing and to celebrate with those you love. To those who had to work, who were alone, or who are suffering illness or difficulty, I pray a better day for you and the meeting of your needs. I hope that all of us will find ways to open our eyes, reach out to one another in love and mutual caring, so that all my experience that bounty of God.

How did you spend this day? What were your special blessings? Did you remember to give thanks?

Photo by martha_chapa95 used under Creative Commons License. Thanks!

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