Happy Thanksgiving!

The hustle and bustle of the season is upon us! As much as I love the fall, I love the chillier weather that comes around this time of year. The holidays just wouldn't be the same without cozy hats and gloves, mugs of hot chocolate, and long evenings by the fire.

Thanksgiving is one of my very favorite holidays. I love the festive afternoon meal, the time with family and friends, and the focus on thankfulness. I grew up with many wonderful Thanksgiving Day traditions. We used to start the day by baking sweet potato biscuits, cooking the turkey, reheating casseroles, and making a batch of wild rice soup (Mom's favorite). In between "helping" in the kitchen, we'd watch the Macy's parade while busily unwrapping the silverware for dinner. In the afternoon, we greeted friends and family, watched Dad carve the turkey, and gathered around the table (or two, depending on the number of guests!) At each place, there were three kernels of dried corn and before dinner, we took turns speaking our blessings aloud (one thing for each kernel). It was always a wonderful opportunity to pause -- contemplate what it means to be thankful -- and share three of our many blessings.

This year, I'm exceedingly thankful for sweet friends and family who blessed us with thoughtful cards and gifts and celebrated our wedding day with us, for Steve - the love of my life - and the life God has set before us, and for the gift of grace.

Tomorrow, we'll begin our holiday weekend - we're spending a few days down at Steve's parents' home in CT for a time of feasting, fellowship, and Christmas tree-hunting! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!