Native Writes: Words to live by


Thanksgiving was Thursday, a time to give thanks.

It is my hope that everyone needing this feeling found it.

It’s also a time for remembering and I was graphically reminded of the time I set fire to the marshmallows on top of the yams.

Yes, it happened, so often it became sort of a tradition. My daughter-in-law took over.

Then there was the time we were going to deep fry a bird and learned it would take $25 worth of oil to fry a $10 turkey.

In my reading, I learned that the turkey isn’t known for its brilliance. That’s probably why it has taken the place of prominence on traditional tables.

Humans generally aren’t known for being super geniuses so preparing it should be a breeze.

Maybe. Ours finally turned out well after years of debating whether to stuff it or not, glaze it or not or just eat something else.

One year, two people alone, we tried prime rib.

We returned to turkey and it’s written in the annals of family history.

Whenever I decide we will dine on bologna sandwiches, even my 50-something sons get sad eyes.

The holidays are all about tradition.

I’m not sure all of United States history and tradition are great wonders for which we should give heartfelt thanks, but this IS a great nation and has always been.

Like my green bean casserole, it could get better, but this is true wherever human beings are involved. Something in the human equation dictates conflict.

It’s been that way since Cain slew Abel.

The difference is we are our brothers’ keeper. And sisters’, as well.

I was an only child for all intents and purposes since my dad was 27 years older than my mom and my half-siblings were within mere years of her age. Their children were close to my age, so Thanksgiving and Christmas were times I could share childhood things and thoughts with family members.

As I write this, I watch my three grandchildren, the only ones I will ever have, as they watch a Thanksgiving movie on television. The oldest girl is 19, the middle girl is 17 and the grandson turned 15 on Veterans Day.

People who know me well know I would love to be from a large family and it’s true, but they are all in the Pacific Northwest and most of us have never met.

My mom has one sibling left and he tries, but there are just too many.

Someone suggested I get a DNA test done and I chose not to. As part of a good community, I am fine.

Thank the Lord.

I smile as I recall the time my paternal grandfather, who lived past the age of 95, decided to give my eldest son some advice on how to get along with people.

Being from Missouri, he stood firm on believing only what could be proven.

“If you want to do well, call someone before you harvest your tobacco so it will be ripe when you sell it.”

“If you go to spit, be sure you hit the can.”

Words to live by.

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