Monday, December 4, 2017

Memories of Thanksgiving 2017

So once in every year we throng
Upon a day apart,
To praise the Lord with feast and song
In thankfulness of heart.
~ Arthur Guiterman

We were blessed to welcome my side of the family for Thanksgiving this year. Our gathering of twenty loved ones was a feast of gratitude, with a delicious spread of food, plenty of laughter and conversation, and a heartfelt devotional time together.  

Gathering in late afternoon allowed us to capture the waning autumn sunlight for family portraits. Before we began final preparations for the meal and set the cousins loose to play, my brother, Nathan, took all of the group photos in this post.

For our dining room tablescape, I filled a pumpkin soup tureen with roses and hydrangeas in a soft palette of blue, green, pink and cream.

The holiday week offered Carson his first opportunity to come home since leaving for college in August. I was already counting down the days to his return, but a traffic accident that totaled his car just an hour from campus made us even more grateful to be reunited. Thankfully, he was not seriously injured, and we are left with appreciation for the kind strangers who stepped in immediately to help. My mama heart was so happy having all four children under one roof again!

For the first time ever, I used disposable plates, napkins and cutlery for our holiday meal. I was unsure about this decision at first but ultimately enjoyed exchanging some of my time in the kitchen for more relaxed enjoyment of our guests.

Time with my father and siblings is always a treasure!

Atop a ruffled linen runner, smaller arrangements in coordinating soup bowls echoed the hues of the larger centerpiece of blooms. Glazed ceramic pumpkins, little leaf bowls filled with cranberries and candles, and fresh-cut foliage filled out the tableau.

As my sister, Jennifer, said so eloquently, "These kids. They are special and unique in their own way. I am so blessed that I get to call each of them my own ... my child, my niece, my nephew. As they get older, time becomes more precious and memories more dear."

Although the calendar has already slipped into December, I could not move into the Christmas season without sharing the happy memories from our Thanksgiving Day celebration -- cherished hours of togetherness that I will always hold close to my heart.

"Thanksgiving Day comes, by statute, once a year; to the honest man it comes as frequently as the heart of gratitude will allow." ~ Edward Sandford Martin

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