Thanksgiving, Giving Thanks

2015-11-26 red leaves

Although different than some years, this Thanksgiving was one of the best.  My parents are on a cruise in Panama, so we headed up to Nana and Papa’s house to spend the holiday with them.  We didn’t want to make extra work, but since that is what we typically do, we went with it and they prepared all the food and we came, ate, and made a general mess of things.  What lucky great-grandparents they are!  (sarcasm hopefully detected).  But, I think fun was had by all…at least every one of our family did!

A few highlights for me of the day:

Playing Memory with Nana and Selah.

2015-11-26 Memory Game

I have to be honest, I’ve beat Selah ONCE at this game.  And I’m not exaggerating, and we’ve played quite a few times.  The girl has a memory of an elephant (isn’t that what they say?  Not sure how much an elephant remembers, but regardless, this 5 year old is GOOD.).  Needless to say, Nana was no more successful than me. Although, if you measure success in laughs, maybe we won.

Playing in Nana and Papa’s room with jewelry and flashlights.  Selah and Asher are pretty taken, as I used to be, with the ‘dress up’ jewelry collection that Nana has, so we always beeline for it when we’re there.  This visit was no different, and this picture reminded one of me long ago when I basically put on the entire ‘collection’ at once:

2015-11-26 Selah & jewelry

It seems Selah has a bit more discretion when it comes to wearing everything at the same time, although, it maybe just be that I didn’t quite capture the perfect moment.  Asher liked the jewelry as well, but he mostly played with the pins as animals, took out every single flashlight in the entire house (I kid you not – there were about 7 afterwards that Papa probably had to find a home for, and may not have even known he had), and also made repeated calls to “Grandma” on the phone:

2015-11-26 Ash Calls Gma

It’s funny, we don’t have a land line at our house, so Asher was fascinated by the phone.  He also did not get the concept that this was real, and he was upset I kept making him hang up.  So, we’re hoping no actual long distance calls were made, since we may not be invited back when they get the bill!

Another highlight was playing outside.  Not only was the fall foliage beautiful, but Nana would not be outdone by her great grandchildren, and took to ‘racing’ them.  We brought Asher’s bike, so he rode, while Nana sped around on her scooter, and Selah chose by foot (poor kid has a hard time riding her bike with the broken arm…which absolutely did not stop her).  Nana also gave lots of rides, letting Asher and Selah drive the scooter on her lap.  Brave woman right there.  I just love the look on all of their faces (I captured a few, but none as engrained as the beautiful picture in my mind), and even more vivid was the divine sound of laughter from all six of us through the day.

2015-11-26 fall day 2015-11-26 fall leaves 2015-11-26 Nana & Ash 2015-11-26 Nana & Selah 2015-11-26 Nana Races 2015-11-26 on the road again 2015-11-26 Selah & Nana drive2015-11-26 Ashy drives

It goes without saying that we are incredibly thankful for all of the blessings in our life.  Not a day goes by that I don’t realize what a gift we have been given in those around us.  But days like this are even more poignant reminders of how very thankful we are to have our family.  Of course we missed those not with us terribly, but this was one of those special holiday moments where we were just there – in the moment.  I mean, how often do you get to have a race where the participants are 80+ years apart?!

Safe to say the kids enjoyed the day too – they were still talking about it the day after.  Here are a few stray images I also loved from the day…

Selah jumping to pick fruit, not letting that arm stop her:  2015-11-26 Selah jumps

My two handsome boys:  2015-11-26 Daddy & Ash

Just a boy and his bike:  2015-11-26 Boy & his bike

These faces say it all:  2015-11-26 these faces

We were also very thankful to Papa who made a lot (and by a lot, I mean, all) of this day possible.  We even hesitated coming up because we just really didn’t want to be a burden to anyone, and a Thanksgiving meal isn’t exactly burden-free…but he made us feel like it was no problem at all, which it clearly wasn’t.  And I’m sure the kitchen wasn’t the only thing that needed cleaning after our crew left the building – if nothing else, the flashlights sure  needed to find their homes again, and likely the jewelry will be coming out of the woodwork in every room for a few months from now.  Sorry if you never recover much of your jewelry, Nana – or find it in places you never imagined!  But Nana and Papa, we sure hope you both had as great of a day as we did.  I pray some day my kids look back and remember how blessed they were to have such amazing role models and generations of blessing.  When we count ours, we sure do count you twice (& twice again).


Kelly Rae & family.

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