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Location: Clearwater, South Carolina, United States

Monday, November 27, 2006

thankful - 3

The family started gathering in, we set up more tables in the den, the food was lined up on the cabinets in the kitchen and we then congregated, thanksgiving was offered for the food and we started taking the food and making it a part of ourselves, some of it for a lifetime. Our number topped out at 26 and of that total 10 were youngsters, 7 of which were under 5 years old – including the two-month-old twin girls of the niece. You might say it was a joyful, raucous, semi-controlled chaos – especially among the young ones – that I would not have had any other way – I was very thankful.

The food was again great but the warmth of family was something to just bask in and enjoy. And as hard as it was to laugh or smile and still eat, it still happened just that way. When the consuming slowed down and some of the dishes were cleared away, the shopping members of the family gathered the sales papers and set about continuing a tradition. This endeavor is to gather funds from each family and instead of buying Christmas gifts for each other; we would buy for at least one needy family – anonymously, of course. We had information on a family through church sources and the group just sat around the table planning for shopping the next day (the day after Thanksgiving).

The list was divided up with some going in one direction and others in another. Some items were planned and some would just be ad-lib as the shopping progressed. Our event wound down and the family members not staying with us went to their homes. Our shopping group, consisting of the Spice, OD, YD, GM1 and GM2 arose before the sun to get in on some early specials. One of the non-shoppers, me, just tried to go back to sleep after they left – they knew that they had my blessing on the adventure and with my gimpy leg, would have just slowed them down.

The massive shopping was done on Friday morning, probably the busiest shopping day of the year – these lady folks in my life seem to thrive on this sort of thing – even more so because of the reason behind the project. The shoppers returned about 10:30 and were all excited about their purchases, even some items that were not for the chosen family – go figure.

Friday was also the day of OD and crowd going home – tempering the day with a touch of sadness but so thankful that they were able to come for the week. It came to be early afternoon, our van was loaded up with their luggage – we were taking them back to the Atlanta airport to fly back to Houston – and we were on our way. The trip was fairly uneventful other than a somewhat noisy GM5 – he is not a good traveler – and we dropped them and luggage off at the Atlanta airport check-in about 5:30pm. The driving time from our house is just short of two and a half hours.

We pretty much felt like a chunk of us was torn out by their departure, but we just have to continue on with life. We stopped for a short while in Kohl’s in Conyers for the Spice to check on an item. I’m fortunate that my back and leg don’t seem to be much bothered by driving and riding – but walking is a different story, so I stayed in the van except for a short visit to the necessary room.

We mostly got our sadness talked out on the way home and for the whole event of Thanksgiving, with all the surrounding blessings thereof, I am grateful and ever so thankful to God. ec


Blogger itsboopchile said...

You and your family are soooo blessed.
And you know whom to thank.
God is good and instead of complaining and worrying, we must be thankful in all things.

Betty G

11/27/2006 11:43:00 AM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Three posts of thankfulness. You are blessed, indeed.

11/27/2006 03:06:00 PM  
Blogger Bonita said...

Always, when family leave, there is the wistfulness that comes as we see them go. They bring such goodness and light. I'm impressed with your family tradition of buying gifts for the needy, rather than for yourselves. That is outstanding.

11/27/2006 05:06:00 PM  
Blogger mreddie said...

itsboopchile - So true - God is good, all the time.

AC - Yes - blessed and encouraged - and maybe a little tired from all the activity - but it was good.

bonita - In a family meeting last year we decided to pool our money and buy for the needy and we continued it this year. It will be a blessing for them, but for us as well. ec

11/27/2006 06:55:00 PM  
Blogger Granny said...

What a wonderful day you had.

Thanks for your comment. The whole thing is over my head too. Bloglines shows us which bloggers on our lists have published new posts. You're on mine. (Or it's supposed to; it hasn't been doing well lately). It's free and usually convenient but some of us are becoming annoyed.

This was a suggestion for a fix.

11/27/2006 10:18:00 PM  
Blogger Merle said...

Hi Mr Eddie ~ I am so glad you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family. And it is so nice that you show your Thanks and know who to thank. It is a shame our kids move so far away from us, but they have their lives to live, and we are just grateful for when we do see them. Thanks for your comments. I hope others realised who The Donkey's rider was. Take care, Merle.

11/28/2006 02:49:00 AM  
Blogger mreddie said...

granny - It was indeed a wonderful day in South Carolina. New technology (even this) and I only have a passing relationship. :)

merle - It is such a shame that kids don't all live close to their parents - both miss a lot from the absences. The donkey's rider is my close personal Friend. ec

11/28/2006 04:41:00 AM  

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