Wednesday, November 22, 2017

There Is A Place For You At Our Table If Needed

I am completely exhausted. I spent the entire day in the kitchen. Food prep. Peeling. Slicing. Dicig. Baking. Cooking. Dishes. Housework. Spending lots of time with the kids. They were all curious about the excessive hustle and bustle happening in the kitchen, especially Willa. It's her first Thanksgiving with us. The most comical moment was during the process of making my homemade cranberry chutney. When the cranberries started popping in the pot, Willa sat by my feet, looked up at me, head tilted, as if to say, "Mommy, what's that sound?"

Throughout the entire day, while giggling at their shenanigans and trying not to trip over them, I had an overwhelming sense of gratitude.

I posted this on my personal Facebook wall...

Today, I'm grateful that our fridge and cupboards are stocked to make a scrumptious Thanksgiving Dinner. Enough to feed an army. As with our offer in the years prior, the same holds true this year. PLEASE do not spend Thanksgiving alone or go without. My wife and I are fortunate enough to have plenty to share. As the saying goes, "When you have more than you need, build a longer table, not a higher fence." Our home is a Judgement Free Zone. We don't ask questions. Dinner is at 2. Just send me a PM.

Every year, we open our home to those who have no place to go for Thanksgiving or who have fallen on hard times. We do the same thing when I make our big Christmas dinner. I always make enough food to feed an army. So far, over the years, we've had a few people take us up on our offer.

I know what it's like to have no place to go for Thanksgiving and Christmas. I was 18. I remember that holiday season well. I was renting a room. Working at a fast food place. I worked Thanksgiving Day. On Christmas Eve, I sat on the front steps. It was snowing. I kept thinking about the big Christmas Eve celebration my family was enjoying. I cried. The house was empty. I worked Christmas day.

I'll never forget that year. I didn't get a single card or gift. I didn't get an invitation to sit at someone's table to enjoy a Thanksgiving or Christmas feast. I didn't have the money to buy ingredients to make my own. I have never felt so lonely in my entire life as I did that holiday season.

When you go through something like that, it changes you. It's not something you ever forget. Every year, since then, I think about that period in my life.

Today was no exception. Our cupboards and refrigerator were stocked with everything I needed to make a huge Thanksgiving feast and then some. We have a wonderful home that we've lived in for over 5 years. I get to spend Thanksgiving with Lisa, our kids, and our dear friends. For that, and so many other reasons, we are blessed.

And, we have plenty of food to share for Thanksgiving.

This is why we open our doors for our Thanksgiving and Christmas feast. We don't ask questions. We don't judge. Our table is plenty long enough. We have enough plates and utensils.

And there's a whole lotta love here.

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