Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

Every year for Thanksgiving, a large group of family/friends gathers together either at my sister's house, her mother-in-law's house, or her sister-in-law's house. Today we were at my sister's house. There were 18 of us. Thankfully, my sister's place is large enough for us to be comfortable without tripping over each other.

The older generation have known each other since college. My father is great friends with Virginia, who is a legend in classical music. Whenever they are together, the stories flow. And they are amazing. The middle generation (mine) all went to college together as well.

The younger generation are all cousins, and the best of friends. It's always an interesting and congenial gathering.

We have the usual Thanksgiving foods--(veggie) turkey, mashed potatoes, squash, cranberries--as well as peas, rutabega, homemade rolls, pecan rolls, salads, and cider. There are always pumpkin and apple pies for dessert. The table always looks beautiful before we all sit down to eat with the golden cider glowing in the candlelight.

After we eat, we gather in various nitches to talk and listen to others talk. Today, the kids went out to see a movie while the rest of us sat around and talked. The party started to break about about 7:30, although I didn't leavve until 9. It was a pleasant and relaxing way to spend an afternoon.

I'm happy to report that I did not stuff myself, although it would have been easy enough to do so. I have a bit of a cold, so that may account for my lack of interest in eating something of everything. I felt good about the restraint =)

Meanwhile, back on the internet, I have begun hearing from the "kids" I wrote to over the weekend. It's been lots of fun catching up with them. All of them are out of college, most of them married, several of them have kids, most of them happy and successful. A couple have gone through hard times but are back on track. A couple are still in school or graduate school. It's very satisfying knowing that I've had something to do with shaping their lives. And it's nice to know we still have a connection.

Those were good years for me (which isn't to say they're not good now). Things were much easier than they are now, that's for sure. We had no idea then what we'd go through very shortly after this group graduated.


Sunny said...

"We had no idea then what we'd go through very shortly after this group graduated." What was that?

Hey, Thanksgiving is officially 4 minutes finished in your neighborhood. Glad you had it good.

R Aastrup said...

The hospital went bankrupt and closed. The creditors wanted us off the property. There was a trial. The school lost, the church won. We had to give up our dorms on-campus. We lost students. We had to move to the elementary school at the end of the year. We had a series of not-so-good principals. We lost fully 1/2 our students within three years. We had to cut back staff. It has been extremely difficult. However, we are on the rise again. People thought we would close for sure, but there is a core here that didn't let that happen. Now, things are good again, and enrollment is improving. I am optimistic...

Sunny said...

Oh wow! And I was thinking our little school out here had trouble.
(It did but nothing that can be bandied about on a public blog.)

R Aastrup said...

Well, we are stronger and, hopefully, better for it. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right?!