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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Counting Our Blessings

It’s that time of the year. Thanksgiving. A time we remember our family traditions and count our blessings. Personally, my life has been blessed in so many ways. I love my family and they love me. I have two adorable puppies I can never seem to get enough of. I have great friends. I’m healthy. I love my job as a writer. I have a nice warm house to go home to. The list goes on and on. Keep reading.
Thanksgiving is the day of the year we not only stuff the turkey, but we get to stuff our faces—and do it without feeling an ounce of guilt! What a blessing. How many Thanksgiving dinners have you gobbled down until you had to unsnap the top button on your pants to make room for one last piece of pumpkin pie? I figured out years ago I was better off wearing stretch pants on Turkey Day. Stretch pants, another blessing.

Who knew leaving the dinner table after eating until you turned green and were on the verge of hurling, could be so dangerous? I can’t count the number of near-missed concussions and bruises I’ve suffered from dropping to the floor and rolling to the nearest available couch or bed. Lord knows I couldn’t walk upright. Maybe this year I’ll try surrounding the table with couches or mattresses. No more drop and roll. Yep. Add always thinking of ways to better your situation to the list of blessings.

Seriously, the real blessings in my life have always been my family. As a child, my family always started Thanksgiving Day off by watching the parades. My dad was a big fan of waking us kids up at the butt-crack of dawn to insure we had plenty of time to eat breakfast before the Macy’s Parade started. After watching decorated floats and oversized balloons until we were cross-eyed and blind, Momma usually had the turkey feast on the table and we’d begin to engorge our little tummies. Turkey and stuffing, home-made egg noodles, mashed potatoes, five cup salad, green bean casserole, and best of all Momma’s pumpkin pie. It was a lot of food and sadly, I know I’m leaving out a few dishes!

Like any all-American family, we were back in front of the television and cheering on Dad’s favorite football teams. In reality Momma would rather have caught up on her soap operas and my siblings and I would’ve preferred cartoons. But, my dad was all about sports, so God help the person who tried to turn the channel. The man could be snoring so loud the windows rattled, but if anyone touched the dial, or later on the remote, he was upright and asking you if risking your life was really worth it. We all thanked the electronic wizards the day they invented the DVR, another blessing.
After an afternoon of dozing on and off over football, it was time to dig in to the left-overs. Then we were off for more football. How many teams can possibly play on one given day? Still, my family had spent the whole day together, many years never changing out of our pajamas.
The funny thing is, as an adult, I find I want to spend my holidays pretty much the same way my parents spent theirs. When my kids were little, we watched the same parades I watched with my dad. I’ve even picked a few football teams to root for over the years. I still cook Momma’s famous egg noodles and pumpkin pie. Of course they are never as good as hers, but the kids complain if I don’t’ make them! Although they’ve been gone several years, it’s like my parents are with me when I practice the Thanksgiving traditions they taught me. Memories=more blessings.
I’m hoping when the time comes my husband and I are no longer on this Earth, my children, and possibly their children, will continue to spend the special day in a similar way. I know they’ll add a few of their own tweaks here and there, but as long as they keep a little bit of me in their celebrations, I’ll always be with them. What a blessing to be remembered! 
And at the end of day, who could ask for more?

In the comments below, please share any Thanksgiving traditions you practice. And share some of your blessings with us.

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