Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving Day, 2008

As usual, I arise at 4:30 a.m. eastern time, start the coffee and clean the kitchen while the joe is brewing. It’s a special coffee today – Spicy Pumpkin Pie. The aroma of cinnamon is comforting. Eventually, I call Stuart who is making his way through security at General Mitchell Airport. It’s now 5:45 a.m. (4:45 in Milwaukee). That pink hew of the coastal sky is starting to emerge through the kitchen picture window. The trees are still. The birds are singing in the new day.

Stuart boards his plane at 6:15 while we end our cell phone conversation. The phone rings at 6:20. “His flight must be delayed.” But, no, it’s Mitch calling to let me know they’ve just arrived at our home in Wisconsin. After working the night shift last night our eldest and Joanna, accompanied by Porter, their growing pup, drove the ninety minutes of snow-lined highways from Madison to our home in Richfield.

He speaks in a hushed voice, “We’re here,” as Shayne, our college sophomore, is sleeping on the family room couch. (He must miss his dorm loft bed … why else would he not sleep in his queen-sized bed in his bedroom? I wonder if he’ll miss not hitting his head on the ceiling when he awakens, too.)

Mitch sounds exhausted as he whispers, “I have to get some sleep.” He intends to get in a few hours of rest before preparing squash soup for the McLees family Thanksgiving celebration later today.

We won’t physically be with our sons or their significant others for the celebration to give thanks this year. Nor will we spend the day with my parents, siblings and their families cooking, laughing, and enjoying traditional treats: Mom's stuffing, Lori’s éclair torte, Todd’s bread extravaganza and Dad’s pecan pie. But, they and many others will be in our thoughts and prayers of gratitude here in Chesapeake, Virginia.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Love, Jackie

Painting: "The First Thanksgiving"

Jean Leon Gerome Ferris (1863–1930)