Archive for November, 2011

Thanksgiving Day 2011 is now just a lovely memory of a warm and happy gathering of family to share a delicious feast of a dinner to which everyone there had contributed something or things which were very very special.  And some wonderful little elves cleaned up everything and put it all away when my mind was occupied with something else .

May we all be here to gather together next year and share adventures. So much is happening next year!Next year I may be able to take the long walk after eating that everyone else did this year.

So here also  are some promised pictures of my mother’s china which we used this year (Spode – Romney), the table when mostly set, but before food was laid out, of Sofia and Clara considering the utterly fabulous retes (pronounced ray’tesh -meaning strudel) brought by Alice and Barney, the book in which my favorite picture of a father is found, and the picture itself of a knight in armor with his son seen over his shoulder . The last two are not of Thanksgiving of course, but I remember promising to post them on my blog. I like to keep my promises.

And may all of you had a holiday as delightful as mine, filled with great company, friendly laughter, and delicious food. I could hardly wish you more.


(The picture of my granddaughters was taken by their father who is taller than 6’6″.)

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My daughter Alice and I have a CSA share together. Beside the regular growing season share I also have a spring share and a winter share which we pick up just before Thanksgiving and just before Christmas, all beautiful organic produce grown just a few miles away from me, on a farm called Crown Point, begun by the Dominican Sisters of Peace in Akron, Ohio. The farm also grows food for the local food bank and gave well over 30,000 pounds each of the last two years. A lot of this is going to find it’s way to our Thanksgiving table. It was so super abundant and beautiful I just had to share this photo taken by my daughter Alice.

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This may be my last post for a while……Not sure how long. Most of you know that I’m going in for double knee replacement surgery on December 13th, and am already very busy doing PT to get ready, seeing lots of doctors, doing lots of tests, trying to get everything prepared or done ahead of time! This includes all the less than exciting things like car maintenance, carpentry, new gutters, PET/CT scans, etc., etc….

And getting ready for Thanksgiving which is a joy. My entire “nuclear” family plus a very special sister and brother in law will be here. Twelve is a good number for my table! Not sure how well we could fit in more.  Alice has been helping me so often! Furniture has been moved around, my mother’s china has been unpacked, all the many details have been worked on. Perhaps I will do one more post tomorrow, after the table is set.  We’ll see.

With so much going on, and my head in something of a whirl, it is good to take time to sit down quietly and think about Thanksgiving and all that I have for which to be Thankful. We used to have a tradition when my children were little and still all living under our roof, of each making a list of things we were grateful for. Then before the dinner, after the grace, each in turn would read aloud the list….There was a time when we had to limit the list to 3-5 things because they could get very long! This year we are planning to revive this tradition.

I remember how amused we were by some of the things our young children listed on their gratitude list. Alice began hers one year with “the wonderful green grass”. And there was a lot of repetition: family, friends, home, food, living in the United States of America with freedom of religion and speech and a high degree of safety….. So many people are struggling.

(Here I feel, so many people are rambling on, and I am one!)

So there will probably be a break in my blog for a good while, but I certainly hope to return “in the fullness of time”.

The pictures for this post are for my dear vegetarian son, Andy!

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Alice has been helping me with a lot of special projects lately, and I really enjoy this, especially because little Stephen comes along and is such a ray of sunshine with his happy ways that the whole day is immediately brighter…It is difficult to decide which picture of him is my favorite today!

I’m also posting a photo of the hutch cupboard with the flying turkey plates I inherited from my grandmother (called Nana, as I am). All the Thanksgiving dinners I remember from my childhood I remember eating from these plates and I am happy that my children and grandchildren  enjoy using them with me now, and hearing about long ago and far away when Nana was a little girl.

Also in this photo are two odd pilgrims I picked up a few years ago to use at this time of year, and some of my collection of squirrels and acorns. It began with a little boy in the 1950s who was a dental patient of my father’s and gave him his stuffed toy squirrel. It lived on a shelf of the Seth Thomas Clock on the desk in my father’s office, and I seem to have inherited it. Squirrels are a good symbol of  the “all is safely gathered in” theme of November.

And there is also a picture of a golden tree warming the far end of my back yard, against of lovely blue sky. I think we need to cherish this gold just now. A more monochromatic world approaches. It has its own beauty, but I think I love the golden days best.

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Focus seems to be something I have very little of these past few weeks…..So busy, so much happening, so much flying by in the blink of an eye. I have wanted to blog……about  the Autumn this year which had one of the shortest times to enjoy red leaves in my memory and then a longer golden time which is still with us. The rainy days are so gloomy. The sunny ones filled with glory!

I have wanted to blog about books since we have been rearranging many things here – my daughter is helping me. I am sure I will write something about this, but not this evening. I have wanted to blog about china, about taking down the Hungarian Folk Art plates and putting up my grandmother’s Flying Turkey plates from the 30s or 40s, along with my rather odd collection of squirrels and acorns………I am sure I will in the next week or so. But these days have been so filled with many many doctor’s appointments and helping both Alice and Andy with their disabled cars. Every time I think, “Ah, tomorrow I’ll be home all day and can make some more progress!”, it turns out that very little of my time will be spent at home and when it is, I’m ready for a nap!

I give you, for your contemplation, a photo of my favorite Tupelo/Sour gum tree from the days of its brief glory this year, and a photo of the dining room table in my mother in law’s home in Hungary during the 1st World War. Cousins from Poland came there as refugees and stayed months. They came with their servants, too. And my mother in law and her three sisters and one brother really had a chance to make real connections to these far away relatives. One of the other things I’ve been doing is helping one of the descendants of these families with some genealogy. He remarked that the days are long gone when one has twenty children seated around a dining room table! Too True. But we do have family picnics and parties with more than this many children, so connections are still being made.

The girl on the lower left with her back somewhat to the camera is my someday-to-be mother-in-law whose childhood nickname was Didi.

At any rate, I’ve felt I hadn’t blogged in far too long and then had great difficulty settling down to one topic! That will happen soon, I hope, on a calmer day.

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