Thursday, November 27, 2008

Impromptu Thanksgiving

Because my youngest daughter was sick today, we had to cancel Thanksgiving plans with our extended family and have an at-home celebration. I had not purchased the traditional turkey or ham because I was assigned to prepare the salad and dessert. So, we had a different kind of a Thanksgiving today: grilled teriyaki steaks, cherry-banana salad, scalloped corn casserole, and pumpkin/cream cheese cake roll. It came together rather nicely considering it was impromptu!

The homely pineapple "turkey" on the table is a tradition at our house. His head has been recycled for at least 20 years, but we still enjoy unpacking him each year along with the thanksgiving candy dish and the books. I'm not very good at seasonal decorating~ I guess I just don't have time to fuss. So the few decorations we bring out every year do become special to the children.

We did have one turkey leg on the table, leftover from the church dinner last night. Artiste was able to take a couple of bites of it in spite of her ill health. I thought this picture was so funny!

Have you ever tried writing Thanksgiving acronyms? We have done this together every Thanksgiving since the children were old enough to write. Just jot down a blessing for each letter in your name, and then share your list aloud in the family circle.

The Courtship of Miles Standish has become our annual family read-aloud. I think of Longfellow as the quintessential American poet. Listen to these lines:

"Heard, as he drew near the door, the musical voice of Priscilla
Singing the hundredth Psalm, the grand old Puritan anthem,
ItalicMusic that Luther sang to the sacred words of the Psalmist,
Full of the breath of the Lord, consoling and comforting many.....

Open wide on her lap lay the well-worn psalm-book of Ainsworth,
Printed in Amsterdam, the words and the music together,
Rough-hewn, angular notes, like stones in the wall of a church-yard,
Darkened and overhung by the running vine of the verses.
Such was the book from whose pages she sang the old Puritan anthem,
She, the Puritan girl, in the solitude of the forest...."
It's good to have traditions, but it is also good to do something NEW. We played a new game called "Life Stories". It has been on our game shelf for a couple of years, but we have just recently pulled it out and enjoyed it. It's great for sharing memories, funny family stories, favorite vacation remembrances, etc. The kids played this game with their Grandparents last month, and it was a hit all round. My daughter wants me to buy another one so that she can have two tables going at the same time when she has her birthday party. It's not often you find a game that pleases young and old alike!

Good food, good reading, board games by the fire~~ so much to be grateful for here at the end of this Thanksgiving Day!


Doug P. Baker said...

Sounds like a great Thanksgiving. And what an awesome poem! I should have pulled it out myself if I had thought of it. Maybe in the morning I'll read it to the girls.

Anonymous said...

Your picture of A made me crack least some things never change, no matter how far away I am!

I had to dig to find my Longfellow book...but I re-read it every year too. I love "Miles Standish". I did, however, read it to myself, since my cats probably would never appreciate the beauty. :)