My husband loves Christmas. He starts with the music in September and shortly after is watching all his favorite movies. I get it Christmas is wonderful it brings a light to the cold weather. That is his favorite but my favorite time of year is Fall.
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I've always enjoyed Thanksgiving. It is a special time where food is lovingly prepared. Not quick thrown together meals. No, this is the time to bring out family recipes. Planning the menu takes weeks! For years we went to my inlaws house. I remember walking in the door and the wonderful smells that filled the air. Often we had a little one dressed as an Indian.
One year that really stands out to me was the year my sister-in-law invited boys from our local Coast Guard. They were allowed to leave training for a meal but most did not have families close by. My father-in-law and sister-in-law went and picked them up and a few hours later they had to return them to the base. Here were two young men that were thankful to have a traditional meal with family around. They got to call home (they had permission!) as well. They shared a bit of their lives with us over the turkey and stuffing. My older boys were little at the time and they were so amazed by these young men. I remember thinking this was what Thanksgiving was really about. Serving others and providing a warm, fantastic meal. (My father-in-law makes the best turkey and mashed potatoes!)
Over the years many guest have sat at my inlaws' table. They always had an open door policy. Now that we've moved the meal to our own hope we have kept that tradition. I make sure everyone we know has an invite to join us for the meal.
Thanksgiving Graces by Mark Kimball Moulton is a story written from the perspective of a little boy. This child is probably about 6 or 7 years old. You can feel his excitement for the day as family and friends begin arriving. A lot of work and love went into making this day special for all. Our little narrator begins to worry. He isn't sure if there will be enough - food and space for all the guest. His grandmother sits with him and reassures him that all will be well. She shares the story of Jesus and the fishes and loaves. She gently reminds him that God provides.
I loved this story. The illustrations by David Wenzel make the words come alive. I love how this family embodies the heart of Thanksgiving. That they are using their home for the Lord. I challenge you to invite those who have no where to go. Even if you have a simple spread, it is always more magical when you share with others. This book will be read many times as it has earned a special place on my holiday shelf.
You can get your copy of Thanksgiving Graces at your local bookstore or online at stores like Amazon.
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