Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

Giving Thanks in 2013


thanksgiving-eventAnyone who reads GB&GSF regularly knows this holiday season is incredibly difficult for me. It’s hard to believe it’s our first Thanksgiving without Mama. Mama loved to cook and she loved to eat, but the last few years, she hadn’t been able to do either. Still, instead of dwelling on the pain, I’m going to get through the day by following the advice attributed to one of one of the wisest men I’ve ever read — Dr. Seuss — who said, “Don’t cry because it’s over; smile because it happened.” With that in mind, instead of spending the day in tears heartbroken because Mama is gone, I’m going to give thanks for the 42 Thanksgivings I was blessed to spend with her. I’m thankful for all the Thanksgiving dinners Mama cooked and when she got tired of cooking, I’m thankful for all the cooks and waitresses at Ryan’s Family Restaurant and Cracker Barrel for giving some of their holiday to wait on us and feed us.

I’m thankful for all the Thanksgiving suppers my Granny Wham made for us over the years she was with us. I’m thankful for all the times I listened to Papa Wham as he bowed his head to say the grace I still remember to this day, “Father please pardon us for all of our sins and we thank you for these and all our other many blessings in Christ’s name, amen.”

I’m thankful for my family and friends still with me. I’ve lost many of them over the years and I figure to lose many more before it’s my turn to journey across Jordan. In just a few hours, I’ll be thankful to sit down at a table FULL of food prepared by my loving “second wife” Laura and other members of her (and by adoption and extension, my) family. I’m thankful for Laura herself and her precious real husband, Cameron and my ersatz nephew Jacob.

I’m also thankful for my beloved Budge and the 17 Thanksgivings she has endured me and my sometimes stormy moods around the holidays. I could never have guessed a simple Hummer ride up a washboard mountain road would turn out to be the beginning of a much longer and sometimes stranger trip.

I’m thankful for all the men and women whose duties won’t allow them to spend a quiet day with their families — our soldiers, sailors, and airmen stationed here and across the world providing safety and security for our nation and many other nations across the globe. Also, I’m thankful for our doctors, nurses, and medical technicians who are staffing our hospitals ready to treat the various injuries and illnesses a day of overeating, overexertion, and — sometimes — overexposure to family can bring.

Finally, I’m thankful that one day I’ll get to rejoin Mama and my other loved ones around another table at a marriage supper and I’m thankful for the One who made that possible by His sacrifice that redeemed Mama, Granny, Papa, Budge, me, and so many millions more down the centuries. Our world was in a mess and without any hope, but Jesus came and by His sacrifice, set right everything Adam screwed up. I know not everyone who reads my blog believes Jesus even existed, much less lived and died to save a doomed humanity, but . . . well, He did and my life is living proof as anyone who knew me “back when” can attest to.

I’m also thankful for all of you who read my blog and who’ve encouraged me over the years. Remember I love all y’all and keep those feet clean as you “gobble til you wobble” today!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving 2012


Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

I wanted to take the time this morning to ponder some of the many things I am thankful for. It’s been a tough year in many ways with Mama being so sick and other difficulties Budge and I have encountered and tried to overcome with varying degrees of success. Still, it is a poor, poor life indeed that has nothing to be thankful for and I happen to have plenty.

  • First of all, I am thankful Mama is still with us this Thanksgiving despite fighting COPD tooth and nail this entire year.
  • I’m thankful for all my family — the ones I was born with and the ones I’ve chosen and who have chosen me over the years.
  • I’m thankful for Budge and the nearly 18 years she’s deigned to put up with me.
  • I’m thankful all my furry babies are happy and healthy for another year.

Of course, everyone can be thankful for such wonderful things, but I’m thankful for some stuff others might not think of.

  • I’m thankful to live in a country where the Antichrist can be elected President and defeated for President in the same night.
  • I’m thankful to live in a country where people have the luxury of getting to act like complete fools over a bunch of young men chasing a tough little odd shaped pumpkin up and down a cow pasture.
  • I’m thankful I’ve never been shot at to be free, but I am eternally grateful for every man and woman who HAVE been shot at for my freedom.

I’ve got some things to be thankful for others may not need. I’m thankful that:

  • some scientist somewhere figured out how to isolate whatever makes bupropion and venlafaxine do what they do so I can have a chance at a normal life.
  • even though three of the four are gone on now, I had over twenty precious years with the most wonderful grandparents anyone could hope to have.
  • my beloved Papa Wham — who worked hundreds of 16+ hour days at his service station in Fountain Inn — didn’t have to see the day we’d pay for water in a bottle AND air from a pump.
  • my sweet nephew Stoney and my beautiful niece McKenzie Grace came into my life in this past year.
  • Logan and Caitlyn Brown aren’t my nephew and niece by blood, but by love and that’s all matters anyway.

Being a former librarian, I’ve got some strange things to be thankful for, such as being grateful that:

  • 75 years ago this year, a little Hobbit went on a great adventure and wrote about it in the Red Book of Westmarch.
  • Peter Jackson finally gets to put that Hobbit’s story on the big screen next month.
  • 50 years ago, a precious lady wrinkled time.
  • 150 years ago this year, Prisoner 60214 was released from 19 years hard labor and had an encounter with a kind priest that changed his life and made literary history.
  • 60 years ago a doomed little pig met a very talented spider and the rest, they say, is history.

I’m also extremely thankful for all of you, my readers, who stop by and spend a few minutes with me. I realize time is precious these days and you have many things you can do when you’re online so the fact you choose to come here, some quite regularly to see what I’ve pounded out is gratifying to say the least.

So, know I love y’all and, as always, keep those feet clean and enjoy Thanksgiving with family and friends!



Popping Purple Vein Wednesday


After visiting two supermarkets this morning, I’ve decided to take a momentary break from my explanation of why I still believe in God to make some observations on goings on around me. First of all, did any of you know that Americans celebrate a holiday called “Thanksgiving”  on the fourth Thursday of November? EVERY November? Did you know this Federal holiday tradition dates back to George Washington? Did you know the fourth Thursday in November date was set in 1863 by President Lincoln and when FDR moved it a week earlier in 1939 and 1940 the country almost split again over such a foolish move?

If you knew any of these tidbits of information, you are much farther ahead of the curve than the three quarters of a million people crowded into Publix and Bi-Lo supermarkets on Fairview Road in Simpsonville this morning. From the way the grocery shoppers were treating each other and the personnel of the grocery stores, it seems they thought the holiday was several months away. I was so curious about the state of confusion I stopped in the middle of the Bi-Lo baking goods aisle and pulled up my calendar on my phone. Apparently I was right because November 22, 2012 appeared in bright red signifying a major holiday. Just to be sure, I used my calendar function to check the last several years and — sure enough — Thursday, November 24, 2011 AND Thursday, November 25, 2010 both had red outlines. I wanted to be absolutely certain this trend would continue, however, so I thumbed ahead and I can say with unflagging authority November 28, 2013; November 27, 2014; and November 26, 2015 are all outlined in red and have “Thanksgiving Day” in small font in the box for those days — all of which happen to be the fourth Thursdays of November in their respective years.

Of course the fact I undertook this small research project right in the middle of the aisle of the store containing flour, sugar, packaged nuts, and canned pumpkin almost caused a riot. Several sweet looking blue-haired elderly ladies bumped into me quite forcefully and purposefully with their buggies.

(Important Sidebar Information: I don’t like to act overly sectional in my writing, but I am somewhat proud of my Southern heritage — screwed up as it is — and I am especially sensitive about our accents and vernacular. Now having said that, in the South, we put groceries in a BUGGY, not a SHOPPING CART and if you don’t like it, well, bless your Yankee hearts you are in luck because Interstates 75, 85, and 95 all head north back to the Mason-Dixon Line so get thee hence and you won’t have to endure us poor benighted Dixie-dwellers. Just don’t come crying back when you are freezing your nether bits off  because they are covered in snow.)

I know at least one harried looking woman with a buggy full of Dixie Crystal and LibbyLibbyLibby Pumpkin Puree claimed my parents had, in fact, NOT been married at the time of my birth while another mom left off screaming frustrated obscenities at her three rambunctious offspring long enough to scream frustrated obscenities at me. She not only claimed I was descended from the genus Canis, but that I had untoward carnal knowledge of my female parent. Normally I would have given her a piece of my mind before soundly thrashing any adult male accompanying her for espousing such base slurs upon my character, but something of a maniacal glint in her eyes coupled with the way she was gripping  a family sized can of Hanover Cut Green Beans made me think she might possibly have some murderous intent in her heart  as well as the wherewithal to carry it out, so I let the moment — and her buggy of hellions — pass without incident. Discretion is, after all, the better part of valor.

This was by no means an isolated incident. I saw displays of outright “buggy-rage” in both stores I went into. In Publix, two women appeared destined to come to blows over the last box of 10X Dominos Confectioners Sugar in the store. While they were loudly discussing the merits of each others hair styles, weight, and clothes choices, I took the opportunity to actually slip behind them and take the aforementioned last box of powdery white goodness and beat a hasty retreat before the two amazonian brawlers noticed the object of their forthcoming gladiatorial contest had mysteriously disappeared!

Now I realize I was just as guilty of procrastination as everyone else in the stores and I actually have less of an excuse since I have much more time available to shop. Still, why get so angry and stressed out because YOU waited until the last minute to try to find an unbroken dozen eggs the day before one of the “egg-heaviest” holidays in the year? It’s not the little girl behind the register’s fault that you won’t stand up to your mother-in-law and refuse to make six pecan pies when she just called and asked you at 8:00 AM the day before Thanksgiving, just like she does every year. The Publix manager can’t help it that you are too much of a control freak to let your daughters and daughters-in-law help cook Thanksgiving dinner so you drive yourself to exhaustion for two days and then bite everyone’s head off at the meal before complaining bitterly that “no one wants to help me!”

The moral of the story is, it’s Thanksgiving. You knew it was coming so stop! Just stop! Quit trying to make everything perfect and just enjoy the family or friends you get to share the day and the meal with. Stop getting purple in the face and letting “that vein” pop out on your forehead over the 2 package limit on Philadelphia brand cream cheese. It could always be so much worse. Tomorrow’s Thanksgiving, folk. Today isn’t too soon to start practicing being thankful!

Love y’all and keep those feet clean and belts loosened!