Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Wednesday's Words for October 7, 2009

Turkey day is coming to Canada next Monday—the same day, this year, as Columbus Day in the United States.

It never fails that when I think of Thanksgiving, I recall my school days and the colourful renditions of pumpkins and pilgrims, Indians and The Mayflower and of course, turkeys that we made to decorate the walls of our classroom. I don’t believe it ever occurred to me that we were using American symbols to illustrate our Canadian holiday; the truth is we likely stole the holiday in the first place. What else would we have used to depict it?

I try to live my life each day with an attitude of gratitude, but like most people I focus on that a little more as Thanksgiving draws near. This is the time of year we tend to think of our blessings more than any other.

This year it seems a little harder to find things to be grateful for than in years past. So many people I know are going through really tough and challenging times, not just financially, but emotionally and physically as well. Over the last year, lives have changed course, some marriages have ended, families have been torn apart, and some lives have even been lost.

Then there are so many people scrambling, trying to make ends meet with work hours diminished or jobs gone completely. More people are in need this year than ever before.

Every once in a while I fall into the trap of feeling sorry for myself. It doesn’t happen often but when it does, God always gives me a boot in the butt. Whenever I begin to think I’ve got it rough, I find someone who is much worse off than I am. In those moments I hear a voice chiding me, and that voice sounds amazingly like my mother.

Living in North America we do, of course, have much to be grateful for. Even in these hard economic times, we have blessings many in the world can only dream of. We don’t have to fear bombs falling on our heads, or government soldiers breaking down our doors and carting us off. We may be restricted in our activities by money and time, but otherwise we can do with ourselves and our lives as we will.

We can worship or not according to our own conscience. We can freely elect whichever candidate we choose or we can freely elect not to vote at all.

In our family, even though Thanksgiving itself is always on the Monday, we tend to have our big dinner the day before. When we lived in Flamborough, Thanksgiving meant a trip to the Fair – that would be the Rockton World’s Fair (as it is always billed) followed by the usual turkey feast at home.

We haven’t been to that Fair in several years, even though it’s location is close to where my beloved works. There is a Fair in this town on the Labour Day weekend, and one Fair a year is enough for us.

This year, I went ahead and invited people for Sunday dinner. We’ll be entertaining my daughter and her son, as well as our second daughter and the children of our late son, and her new S. O. Our menu will be the traditional, minus pumpkin pie—because our second daughter doesn’t like it.

The house won’t be as crowded or as noisy as it has been for celebrations passed. We’ll be absent seven members of the family—including my daughter’s two step children whom I fear we will rarely see in the future—and our son and his family. As you know, having fewer guests doesn’t necessarily mean less work. I’m trying to plan how I can prepare some of the food the day before, so I’m not left trying to do everything at the last minute. Because of work schedules, the girls won’t be able to arrive until around dinner time, and so I’ll be preparing the meal on my own.

Some day, when I hone my diplomatic skills just a bit more, I’ll do an entire essay on my beloved’s effectiveness in the home in general and the kitchen in particular.

To my Canadian friends, I wish a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving. To my American friends, I hope that you get to enjoy an extra day of leisure with family and friends on Columbus Day.

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1 comment:

Zequeatta Jaques said...

Morgan, you always write a great blog and I enjoy reading each one. I think that all of us are prone to sometimes think "Woe is me," and we forget to look around and see how good we actually have it in life. Keep writing those blogs and I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.