I heard someone mention somewhere that "even though" Christmas is not Thanksgiving, we should still give thanks. I thought about that a while and wondered why we need a holiday of slaving away and pigging out just to say "thank you" to the Person who matters most. Shouldn't it be a daily event anyway? It was drilled into me many years ago that the Lord will not answer the prayers of an ingrate, and if you think about general parenting, I would hold that premise to be true. Who wants to keep giving and giving to a child who can't seem to muster up a simple "thanks"? What happens when we turn into that kind of spoiled brat?
Sometimes I find myself saying prayers and focusing a lot on asking, and that's when I have to pause and change my tune. By focusing on the thanking, I feel the Spirit deeper and I often forget what I was asking for in the first place because put in perspective, those things almost seem trite. If I'm able to see how much I've already been blessed, why pester The Man with more requests?! Let His ears wander to someone's prayers who's REALLY in need (and then help me find out what I can do in my human form to help that person - that's the "asking" part I should really be concerned with).
So in the spirit of giving thanks no matter how long it has taken me to write about Thanksgiving, here's a list (by no means definitive nor exhaustive) of things I was thankful for during that particular holiday.
I'm grateful for a husband who, since day one, has had an affinity for children. You can't tell here, but during the whole week, the kiddies flocked to and couldn't get enough of "Unkoe Teddy Beaw".
I'm grateful to have brothers who have proven to be such great dads. This one actually made Leah laugh, something Ted was UNable to do in the previous picture.
I'm grateful for the talents I've been given regarding all things sweet. It really comes in handy around the holidays.
I'm grateful for dang good-looking parents after raising 10 unruly children. My dad's health continues to amaze me. And I hope it's true what they say about growing up and looking like your mom. She's a knockout.
I'm grateful that our Thanksgiving has turned into a potluck of ALL the best things that people make. The O-mazing POtatOes and the biggest container of pumpkin cookies I've ever seen came from Sacramento, the salad (with BACON!) and cutest redheads came from Arizona, non-stop entertainment came last-minute from the booming metropolis of Tooele, I did the desserts and caramelized butternut squash (thank you, Ina), and my little sister did her VERY FIRST turkey. We were so proud. Here's the spread with Shannon taking credit for the whole thing.
My favorite is the random cans of cranberry relish. Hey, only the insane go ALL scratch on Thanksgiving. And I know who you are.
Next, I'm grateful that despite how much I keep growing, my cute Mr. Smooches wants to hug and cuddle me all the time anyway. Seriously, ALL THE TIME. I think it's because I keep feeding him. It sure isn't my cleaning skills..
I'm grateful that despite how much I keep growing, there's another Syphus who's growing more. Keep it up, Noah!! You make me look good, you little chubbo! This little porker is only 6 months old.
I'm grateful to have other wonderful women who are pregnant at the same time so I can swap stories and groin complaints without feeling guilty. Pictured here is Stacey, but huge thanks to Shannon, Christy, Melanie, Doris, Kerri, Sarah, Sherice, Natasha, Sachia, Niki, and now Rachel. I also have to thank my own mother profusely. The woman had 10 children, and NEVER ONCE has she said anything like, "Oh, you have no idea what it's really like," or "How can you even complain? You big wimp!" She very easily could, but instead she sympathizes whole-heartedly, offers suggestions on what might work, leaves lotion on my doorstep after I complained about itchy boobies, and then says things like "Ugh, I could never do what you're doing." Yeah, right! You only did this times 10, you crazy woman! I love you!
And finally, I am grateful for my dad's splendid gold robe that he only pulls out for Thanksgiving and Christmas. It wouldn't be the holidays without it.