We are a little late posting this but thought you still might enjoy!
When I was growing up, Thanksgiving was about more than good food. Yes, our table was loaded with turkey, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie, but there was more. Besides our own family of 13, our table was surrounded by friends and the comfort of family traditions that I’ve carried with me through the years.
Thanksgiving is for hospitality.
My mother could stretch a meal farther than anyone I ever knew. Her Thanksgiving table was spread bountifully with nourishing food and she invited many to join in that feast over the years. I can’t remember one Thanksgiving meal where we had just my family around the table. I learned about hospitality during these Thanksgiving feasts. Whether it was a long-time friend, or someone we just met, Mom always had room and food for more.
Thanksgiving is for giving your best.
For my mom, the “best” was more than pulling up another chair to the table. It was bringing out the fine dishes and linens, fall decorations, and presenting her best to those gathered around. We cleaned and prepared the house for days before those feasts so the guests would feel welcomed and comfortable in our home. I still hear my mother’s voice in my head telling me how to clean for company.
Thanksgiving is a time of tradition.
At every Thanksgiving meal, we would go around the table and say something we were thankful for. Yes, no matter how many people were there. (It could take a while some years). Singing was also a large part of our family and Thanksgiving tradition. Either before or after the meal, we would sing the “Doxology” or “Come, Ye Thankful People Come” in 4 part harmony. (We were sort of our own choir).
Thanksgiving is a time of remembrance.
Thanksgiving has changed for us. My siblings and I are now scattered across the globe and our Mom is no longer with us. I have a multitude of nieces and nephews and the old farmhouse would no longer seat us all. But those memories of a full table and full hearts are comforting and inspiring.
Remembering keeps me grounded and thankful, especially for my mom who taught me so much through this holiday.
Written by: Lois Perks