I sat down this evening to think through our Thanksgiving plans. I do love to plan for the holidays. While doing this, memories of holidays past come to mind so freely. I see my mother plan, make her notes (steno pad, blue ink), and devote an entire week preparing for her family. The grandparents would come or we would all load up and visit my Aunt Kay’s dairy farm. There was often an extra guest or two, even a few who would happen to wander by sometime on that Thanksgiving day.
I remember my first attempts at Thanksgiving dinners. I don’t recall any true disasters, but boy oh boy, the exhaustion on Thanksgiving night was most unexpected. Mom never seemed tired, she was always smiling, but I know she was…..now. I wonder if I helped her enough? Did I help with dishes with that same smile? I doubt it. Mom had a grace that I am just beginning to recognize, even though I last saw her face in October of 1990.
My menu is planned on computer paper & in pencil; filed away in my household notebook. I will shop like my mother did; list in hand, up and down every aisle. I will probably even stop and bring something home for dinner. We always laughed about that, but did it anyway. My Thanksgiving dinner hasn’t changed much from the Thanksgiving dinner my mother prepared.
Baked turkey, homemade dressing & potatoes & giblet gravy. The essential green bean casserole, 5-cup salad, and plain corn so we can mix it up with our potatoes & gravy. Pumpkin pie w/a storebought crust.
What I really want for Thanksgiving is that grace — the grace of an experienced, upward looking woman. The kind of grace that doesn’t come before a number of grey hairs make their glorious appearing. The kind of grace that doesn’t get snarky when feet are swollen and backs are aching. The kind of grace that smiles, after barely exiting a spotless kitchen, when a crowd seems to gather looking for another slice of pie or the makings for a turkey sandwich. I want that. I want that for my mother. I want that for my family. I want that for Jesus Christ. Lord, this is a special crown that took me a long time. I learned it from You and the mother You gave me.
Add to my Thanksgiving prep notes: Psalm 84, Proverbs 4, Titus 2
“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” Philippians 4:6