Friday, November 18, 2011

Giving and Giving Thanks

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I made the trip to Walmart today. 

You know the trip, the one where you manuever through packed aisles, weaving around other shoppers filling their carts with Thanksgiving provisions, then wait in line for an eternity to check out?

At least we went in the morning.  I can't imagine how packed stores will be this next week.  I plan on staying far away.
But I got into the spirit in the store.

For the first time, my husband and our two kids faced the prospect of spending Thanksgiving alone as a family.  His parents aren't coming and mine are going out of town.  Our brothers and sisters live in other states and will not make the drive to see us.

This gives us a great opportunity.

Most of us typically invite our closest family to holiday dinners: parents, children, grandparents, brothers, sisters, maybe even aunts and uncles.  We always know people, however, who can't make it to be with their family.  If you ask, you will nearly always find someone who is spending his or her holiday alone.

In the pre-holiday frenzy of the grocery store, I started messaging our friends and stocking my cart.

I learned the three young men we have mentored couldn't drive home to Missouri to see their families.  I sent a message to someone we know who never had a family who celebrated Thanksgiving.

We will be feasting this holiday with people we adopted into our family.

It seems as though every year, we are blessed with "extra" family members at our holiday dinner.  We give to our guests by including them as our family; we give thanks for all of the people God gives us to make our own. 

I hope I picked up everything I will need for the meal this week. 

Here is my menu for Thanksgiving dinner.

*Grandma Gladys' Apple Salad
*Eldon's Steak and Dressing
Oven Roasted Turkey (I will brine it first)
Mashed Potatoes and Gravy
*Sweet Potato Hash Browns
Pumpkin Pie
Cherry Pie

*Come back this week for recipes for Grandma Gladys' Apple Salad, Elle's Orange-Cranberry Sauce, Sweet Potato Hash Browns, and Eldon's Steak and Dressing!

 What one word describes how you feel about Thankgiving this year?

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