A Thanksgiving Story

Many years ago, when we lived in NM, we were the frequent guests of a certain couple, G & M. M is the quintessential hostess. They were blessed to have another couple from the church live across the street — E & C. C is also a gracious hostess and almost everything I currently do as a hostess is somehow rooted in what I learned by watching M and C and, at times, working alongside them.

G is a professor and both families were active in the international student population. At Thanksgiving each year G & M opened their home to many people from G’s group and other ‘orphans’, like us. We spent several Thanksgiving days blessed with their company and that of their guests from Iraq, China, Serbia and other places. Thanksgiving Dinner with eggrolls on the table is so perfect and it is at Thanksgiving, more than any other time, that I miss our friends and church in NM.

One year we were ‘host’ to a Chinese couple through an international student organization — the idea was to do something with the couple (who also had a baby and his mom came to live with them for a year to take care of baby while they did their work) at least once each month. While I was sad to miss out on what was becoming a tradition of spending Thanksgiving with G & M, I was so excited to have Thanksgiving Dinner with our students! However, I had once tried to make a turkey in our tiny apartment oven and it didn’t work out well so I wanted to do a trial run in our ‘new’ house oven to make sure it would turn out well. It did and we ate turkey all week (I’m not actually a big fan of ‘bird’ but, knowing I would be able to serve our guests something edible, I was willing to make turkey burritos, turkey sandwiches, turkey on biscuits, etc for a week).

Thanksgiving morning arrives and I literally am standing in the kitchen holding the pan with the turkey in it, about to stuff it in the oven, when the phone rings. The Husband answers and I can tell from the conversation that it is our guests calling to cancel — it turned out they woke up with the flu and were all very sick and wouldn’t be coming. I felt so badly for them . . . and I felt sick at the thought of all that turkey. I was about to cry. In fact, I probably did cry.

We called G & M and asked if we could crash their Thanksgiving, knowing they were unlikely to turn us away πŸ˜‰ I offered to bring the turkey, but of course M cooks too much food too, so she didn’t need it. I think I took the pies, though. That day I was so thankful for our church family. We stayed late into the evening, sitting around their very comfy great room with G & M and our pastor and his wife, having great conversation and enjoying the evening. It was so good to be loved and welcomed by these friends rather than sitting alone in our house choking down more turkey. I thank God for these people each time I think of them.

Last week in small group the question of Thanksgiving traditions came up, so I shared about our many years at G & M’s and how I now love eggrolls at Thanksgiving. Ramona has kindly offered to make me some authentic eggrolls! MMMM, yum!!! πŸ˜€ But it’s more than the food that is yummy.

So make use of the comment space to tell us a story of thanksgiving —Β  something you are thankful for this year, something from a past year, love shown from the body of Christ, etc.


One Response

  1. in our family, we have 1/2 Chinese and 1/2 American food. the 1/2 American started later when my brother and i started finding and making recipes. now, my family have found that they are quite fond of the taste of green bean casserole and mashed potatoes. πŸ™‚

    anyways, our tradition is to go grocery shopping, thanksgiving day, come home and cook for the rest of the day. usually the men are somewhere in the house, and my mom and i are watching and prepping different foods as we chat. we have dinner, and then immediately after dinner, we make a soup from the turkey bones and preserved mustard greens. πŸ™‚

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