Thanksgiving Extended

Posted by on November 25, 2017 in Shirley's Blog | 2 comments

Happy Thanksgiving!


It took lots of planning

I’m exhausted! All last week we were preparing for guests for our special American holiday. We were to have sixteen. We prayed people would feel welcome and at home when they came for dinner. I didn’t prepare all of the meal and asked each family to bring an item or two. It took lots of planning and arranging but by Wednesday evening, we were ready to pop the turkey in the oven. The tables were set. We were ready.

All set, candles and all.

Ready for 16











There was plenty

I love the planning, making the tables as beautiful as they can be. I’m fortunate that Jim likes to help and enjoys the planning too. We were so busy, I’m sad to say we didn’t take any photos with all of those people at the table. Nor did I take photos of the delicious spread of food. We were rewarded with everyone’s best: Turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean casserole, cranberry sauce–berried and jelled, rolls and butter, corn pudding, layered salad, and dessert–pumpkin pie and dutch apple pie. Oh my. There was plenty.


We each shared for what we were most thankful.


We each shared for what we were most thankful. Each person shared and mainly spoke of their gratefulness for family. Really family is what we’re all about, isn’t it? We start in our birth family. Grow up and start new memories with our own nuclear family. And then they grow up and start their own. We often are rewarded with many years together with the same members. Sometimes families change. Mine has. There are even more members to love and share memories with.


I reflected on my family.


Yesterday, I reflected on my birth family. I was looking at one of the bookshelves in my office. I have lined up all of the Bibles from my life. They are stacked in the order I received them, starting when I was ten, and beyond.  Here they are:

Six volumes that have so much meaning to me…


He still has a strong influence on my life.


Count from left to right, it’s book number seven–the one with bold, gold letters HOLY BIBLE. That was the Bible I was given when I was eighteen, for my birthday and high school graduation. The leather covers are very worn. I paged through it one day and noticed markings. I read the flyleaf with my dad’s handwriting. He’s been gone for more than twenty years, yet he still has a strong influence on my life. Here’s what he said many years ago:

My dad’s words of wisdom…


Here search, and great will be your store

Here drink and you shall thirst no more.





I’m grateful for my history


Dad was right. I searched and found. I drank and was satisfied. I leafed through some of the pages that were well-marked, wondering why and under what circumstances I marked them. A lot happened during that time. Marriage. Children. Joys. Sorrows, all combining to make a rich history. I’m grateful for my history–and for new history being made every day. I’m grateful for my family–and how it has grown in the past few years. My parents are gone. My in-laws are gone. Two husbands. Yet God in his mercy, brought someone else into my life. I’m glad in the fall of my life to have Jim. To share memories with him.



Let’s enjoy one last glimpse of fall.


Next week we’ll enter Advent. But for today, let’s enjoy one last glimpse of fall.



A riot of colors along the curb.

Beauty in simplicity.










Beauty in the reds

Love those Japanese Maples










Carpet of red



But for today, let’s enjoy Fall–and give thanks.


I can’t wait for Christmas and the celebration of our Savior’s birth. But for today, let’s enjoy Fall. And give thanks.

Little Girl–we have two and she’s the smaller Christmas Cactus–she’s announcing it’s soon time for Christmas.


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  1. Shirley, It looks like you had a beautiful Thanksgiving and weekend. Your fall colors are lovely! There is something special about seeing pictures from years gone by, isn’t there? Have a great week!

    • I think the fall colors were especially pretty this year. We traveled to New England and just missed their color, but we were blessed with our own in the northwest!

      You have a good week too!

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