The year after my mom and aunt died, we had our first Thanksgiving as a family without them. My three cousins -- they are like a brother and two sisters to me -- and my dad and uncle at Martin's home in Cleveland. We have a lot of smiles in this photo. Happy faces.
We're all pretty good with the camera. And with learning how to manage Thanksgiving dinner without the moms who did most of the heavy lifting.
It was a tough year, missing the moms, getting used to new holiday routines without them. Remembering and smiling and laughing -- but there were tears too. I don't think that at the ripe old age of 25 and younger that any of us could have seen how Thanksgivings would change over the years. We would grow up to have families and living far apart, those days of celebrating together became a thing of the past as we set our new traditions.
And yet, I think of that year when perhaps the thing for which we were most grateful was to be together in a time of sadness and regrouping, holding tight to traditions and each other.
These days, we celebrate Thanksgiving in different places, on different days. Rick and I will have a Thursday Thanksgiving table of shrimp and grits. Maybe we'll be joined by friends, maybe not. On Saturday, we'll have a bigger table, turkey and the trimmings. It won't matter the day, not really. (Maybe a little!) The main thing is being thankful. And being with people you love.
So, in a few photos, some of the things for which I give thanks this year and always...like beautiful sunsets at the lake.
A world of nature.
Letters and cards that come in the mail, breaking up the normal fare of catalogues, magazines and things that come in window envelopes!
My family of birth and all the family they added to my life (this photo was taken in 2005 at Uncle Marty's 90th!).
Rick, sweet wonderful Rick who has been more of a support that you ever could imagine.
My extended family, courtesy of Rick -- Kevin, Greg, Molly and thankful for Baby Boy KevMo, coming in February!
If I had a photo of all of you dear blog friends and my "family" of real-life friends, too, I'd put it here. Instead, a bouquet for you!
Happy Thanksgiving, from Rick and me.
And onward! Let the busy season continue!
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