Thanks Giving

Bloodhound (Niki Edgar Mysteries) by denise hays

Also available on Nook!

As I am wheelchairing myself across the country to Seattle, so that I can spend the holiday with my son and daughter-in-law, denise hays, one of my favorite authors, has graciously agreed to fill in with this site’s first guest post.  Her piece, titled Thanks Giving, is sure to resonate with many of you.

Thanks Giving

Thanksgiving Day, at my parents’ house, always meant paper plates, plastic forks, and football games. Imagine my surprise when my husband and I showed up at my in-laws’ house on our first Thanksgiving Day together. My mother-in-law had gone all out with white tablecloth, china, silver, and crystal.

Instead of potluck dishes brought in Tupperware containers by various family members, each dish presented by my mother-in-law revealed the artistic flare I would later learn touched everything she did. Her Thanksgiving tables looked like photo shoots for Southern Living magazine. At first, I was taken aback at the formality of it all. Why would you ruin Thanksgiving Day by having to dress for dinner? I was thankful that day – thankful I had worn a skirt!

It was a lovely day and, over the years, I came to appreciate the effort my mother-in-law put into our Thanksgiving meals. I loved the clink of silver against china, the tart cranberry sauce molded into a perfect ring, and the linen napkins I was, at first, afraid to use.

But I also loved the casual warmth of my mother’s Thanksgiving table. I learned that I, who rebelliously refused to wear the monogrammed sweaters and penny loafers my childhood friends eagerly embraced, had come to love tradition.

One tradition common to both families and, I would venture to guess, common to all American families, is the partaking of turkey and dressing on Thanksgiving Day. My mother’s cornbread dressing is dressing done right, and I do give thanks for it! Cornbread dressing, steamy and savory with what my Grandma Myrt would call a “right smart” amount of crumbled sage, is one of the most comforting flavors in the world. Nothing says home and family and Thanksgiving like cornbread dressing. It warms the heart as well as the belly.

My question is why do we eat cornbread dressing only on Thanksgiving Day? Why do we save such a delectable delight for one day of the year? Cornbread dressing is not hard to make. It doesn’t take much time, and it consists of inexpensive ingredients. So what gives?

I am thankful for cornbread dressing; yet I only indulge on Thanksgiving Day. That makes me think – what else am I holding back on giving thanks for?

This year, I’m starting a new Thanksgiving tradition – the tradition of giving thanks, more than just once a year, for cornbread dressing. Of course, I’ll have to eat it more often in order to do that, right?

I’m also going to give thanks for other stuff, too, and I’m not going to wait until the “appropriate” time of year. Thanks giving all year long definitely has its advantages!

denise hays

Just a reminder – Don’t forget to enter your name and email address in the box at the top right of this page for a chance to win one of several free copies of One Last Gift, From Women’s Pens Christmas anthology.  You won’t want to miss this one!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Annie Acorn and denise hays

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