• Tory Anne Brown

Thanksgiving, 2021

Today marks our first Thanksgiving in Oklahoma, in our new home. Traditions in my family scream, "Parade! Turkey! Pumpkin Pie!" but this year, as I have in the past, I have deviated from those ingrained traditions. This year it will be just Hubbin and me at my table. We have no cable TV, so the parade is out, the turkey has been replaced with Cornish Game Hens, and our pumpkin pie is a sweet potato pie. My nostalgic side is kicking in and this morning I am reminiscing about "Thanksgivings' Past." Thanksgivings when I was young, when my mother got up REALLY early to stuff an enormous bird, the whole-berry cranberry sauce she made that nobody seemed to like, and the baking that sometimes took days. Then there were the Thanksgivings that we had at others' homes because we had no money for our own. We gave thanks then because we had food, and for friends who cared enough for us to invite us to share their dinner. There were many times my table was set with extra plate to seat the folks my family brought with them. My mother used to say that my brother brought home strays; she didn't mean the four-legged ones. These people he invited were just as welcome at our table as we were, and there always seemed to be enough food for the unexpected. One year there was a group of foreigners from South America at our table. By then it was just my youngest son and me and we lived in an apartment complex, and in that complex lived a group of helicopter pilots from Colombia - this was their first-ever Thanksgiving in the states, so my son and I decided to go all out when we invited them to join us and they accepted. Turkey and all the trimmings, and I mean, ALL the trimmings. They took plates and plates of leftovers back to their apartments with them when that was over. I wonder if they remember? My son didn't care for turkey, so during the years it was just him and me, a ham graced the center of our table, instead of a turkey. This Thanksgiving, my family is away. There will be no 'strays' and it makes me kind of sad, but I am intensely grateful that God has given me Hubbin to share this day with. His quiet strength gets me through these moments and today I will give thanks for what we have, and for all of the memories of Thanksgivings' Past.

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