I love this time of year, don’t you? As we count our blessings this holiday season, may we also make our blessings count.
I was delighted to see Christmas decorations adorning a drive-thru window the other day. But, I was also curious, why so early? We haven’t even celebrated Thanksgiving yet. I said as much to the sweet lady who handed me a bag of tacos, my personal precursor to a week-long turkey binge. She shrugged in response, gesturing with her eyes at any one of the busy workers behind her. Someone there wasn’t feeling very thankful.
This time of year, what’s not to be thankful about?
The weather here is unusually warm but not unbearable. It’s International Novel and Memoir Writing month. Authors Jonathan Swift and Mark Twain were born in November.
Children’s author (and winner of two Newberry Awards), Elizabeth George Speare, was born November 21, 1908. All four historical fiction novels (for children) were highly successful, most notably her impeccably written manuscript for “The Witch of Blackbird Pond,” which reportedly required only one change before being sent to print.
Numerous noteworthy events occurred in Novembers past.
November 21, 1934, Ella Fitzgerald secured her future as a legendary Jazz singer by bringing down the house on Amateur Night at the Apollo in Harlem.
Did you know that as President Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address on November 19, 1863, he was in the middle of a minor bout of Smallpox? And, although the president spoke for only three minutes, his rhythmic delivery of compelling remarks was interrupted five times by applause.
And who can forget such an occasion as the three-day harvest feast shared between early American settlers and Native Americans, an event that to this day serves as a reminder that it’s not so much why we “break bread” together. It’s that we do.
In November of 1935, the first edition of the board game Monopoly went on sale.
But giving thanks – or being grateful – isn’t all about history. Why, just this month American Girl Dolls, the board game Risk, and good old-fashioned sand were inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame.
The culmination, earlier this month, of a journey perhaps not found on bucket lists (though epic just the same), revealed a blue trash barrel belonging to the city of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, washed up 3500 miles away; on a beach on the west coast of Ireland!
A little levity is always in order during hectic times, right? Reader’s Digest shares some comical Thanksgiving calamity stories. For instance, a woman rushed into a store on her way home from work, hoping to pick up a centerpiece for the Thanksgiving table. Not finding what she needed, she confronted the store manager, “Are you out of your gourds?!” to which he replied, “Why? What did we do now?”
How about you, dear reader? What smells the best at Thanksgiving dinner? (besides your nose) Do you have a favorite side dish? A special movie you watch every year?
Until again, stay safe, be happy, and write well!
3 thoughts on “Gratitude is Long Remembered”
Howdy, dIEDRE! ~
First, I kinda gotta agree with the lady at the taco stand…
Although Christmas is (BY FAR!) my favorite Holiday, I don’t really care to see Christmas decorations up prior to Thanksgiving (and obviously, much less so before Halloween… which happens in some places).
I kind of feel that putting up Christmas decorations BEFORE Thanksgiving cheats Thanksgiving of its full and due appreciation.
But on a less Thanksgiving-praiseworthy note, for several decades I have been calling Thanksgiving “the gateway to Christmas”. As much as I adore Christmas music, I never permit myself to listen to any of it until the day after Thanksgiving. But on that day, I begin listening to Christmas music almost exclusively up through December 25th. I stop listening to Christmas music on December 26th, “the saddest day of the year” (which also happens to be the day my brother was born… and you can read into that whatever you want to. 😉
>>… Authors Jonathan Swift and Mark Twain were born in November.
I’m sure I’ve told you this before, but Mark Twain is my all-time favorite writer, and I even own a first-edition (1872) copy of his book ‘ROUGHING IT’.
>>… good old-fashioned sand [was] inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame.
Wow! That’s sandtastic!!
Seriously, I think that’s wonderful and it shows that “the little boy” or “little girl” was still alive in some people somewhere. (Despite the fact that my brother and I thought we were the only ones from our generation who had kept “the little boy” alive in us.)
>>… The culmination, earlier this month, of a journey perhaps not found on bucket lists (though epic just the same), revealed a blue trash barrel belonging to the city of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, washed up 3500 miles away; on a beach on the west coast of Ireland!
What a fantastic (not to be confused with “sandtastic” — but then again, “sandtastic” fits just as well here, too) Fun Fact! I drove through Myrtle Beach the first time in 1983, and it stands out in my mind for having more miniature golf parks than any other place I’ve ever seen. From 1983 until today in 2021, any time I see or hear “Myrtle Beach”, my mind immediately conjures up an image of a miniature golf course.
>>… How about you, dear reader? What smells the best at Thanksgiving dinner? (besides your nose) Do you have a favorite side dish? A special movie you watch every year?
I’ve been a vegetarian since a few days after Thanksgiving in 1985 (and, yes, turkey played a part in my future vegetarianism). But my favorite part of a traditional Thanksgiving dinner was always the stuffing, anyway. And I still LOVE it, but never get to have it anymore because a traditional Thanksgiving dinner has ceased to be a “thing” in my world.
As for Thanksgiving movies… ‘Planes, Trains & Automobiles’ is the best. But another big favorite is ‘The Band’s Last Waltz’.
dIEDRE, I need to figure out a way to receive notifications to my Email InBox of new posts on this site. I am the least thing from “tech savvy” that you can imagine. Do ya know how I can pull off this “magic”?
I’ll dink around a bit before I leave here and see if’n I can figure out how to do this on my own.
Bless And Be Blessed, my friend!!
STMcC Presents BATTLE OF THE BANDS
Howdy, Stephen T.!
Would you believe I just watched “Planes, Trains, and Automobiles” the other day?
Stuffing is a favorite dish around here too. Dare I ask how a turkey changed your life?
I did not know Myrtle Beach had an abundance of golf courses, fascinating!
I always worry about folks with birthdays so close to Christmas, did you get your brother two gifts?
I think (and truly hope) I figured out the issue of the notifications here. If not, I’ll keep dinkin’ until I do 😉
Thanks for strolling by the Stream!
LikeLiked by 1 person
My Brother is lucky when he gets even ONE gift from me.
>>… Dare I ask how a turkey changed your life?
It’s not a pretty story but… you axed for it:
I had actually considered vegetarianism since I was 16 or 17, but never followed through on that thought until…
In 1985, I came home a bit tipsy one evening a couple days after Thanksgiving. Feeling hungry at about 2:00 AM, I pulled a leftover turkey leg from the refrigerator and began gnawing on it. Suddenly, as I was pulling muscle off the bone of this dead animal with my teeth, I saw myself as some sort of barbaric creature.
I was immediately repulsed by the whole idea of eating “meat”, so I chucked what was left of the turkey leg into the kitchen trash can, and went from carnivore to vegetarian in that moment. It’s been about 37 years now, and the only thing I miss at all is – believe it or not – those little Vienna Sausages that come in a can. That was pretty much the *LAST* thing I would have anticipated missing from my previous meat-eating years. Life can be surprising.
A Happy & Healthy 2022 2 U!
STMcC Presents BATTLE OF THE BANDS