Thanksgiving Gratitude

It’s Canadian Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving, my fellow Canadian friends!

It’s the first time we had all the kids together on Thanksgiving Sunday. Normally, they are at their other parents and come back to us late in the day on Thanksgiving Monday, where I try to squeeze all Thanksgiving festivities in between the hours of 5pm and 8pm.

Not this year. We got to have them all day Saturday and Sunday, before Zach and Josh headed off to their Dad’s this (Monday) morning. Two full days. A very nice treat. (We actually had everyone Friday during the day too – but not in the evening. I had to work in the morning, but brought Gabe and Zach with me to my group, and then we were able to take the kids to laser tag, which they loved of course).

Saturday was spent running some errands. We had a Church Halloween party in the evening and the kids needed some things for their costumes, so we had to get that out of the way. Most of the kids have a lot of tests next week, so studying had to be done too. We did squeeze in a yummy lunch, but the overall day was pretty ho-hum. We went to the party, where they all enjoyed dressing up, activities and of course the food. We then headed home and caught up on the Amazing Race.

Sunday was a horrible, rainy day. But, we got up nice and early and popped the turkey into the oven before heading off to church. We arrived home from Church to that distinct turkey-is-almost-done smell, and prepped the rest of the meal. It was a late lunch, very early dinner.

As per tradition, we sat around the table to say what we are all grateful for. I sat back and listened. Really listened. I heard things like:

“Our health”

“Our ability to travel”

“Our new dog, Reggie”

“Our family identity”

“The food”

“ The home that we have”

“The small things that we do – like just yesterday, being together”

“Traditions that we have”

Of course, hearing those things made me smile, because we are truly, truly blessed.

It was my turn to share. My heart was full. Because ALL of this was what I was grateful for. Sitting at a table talking about the blessings we have. All the little, tiny things. Having a table to sit around. Having every chair filled. Having laughter fill the air. Having the same traditions. Even all the little fights. Having each and every person at that table be a part of my life. My family. Is it possible?

We finished dinner and went to watch a movie together that the kids wanted to watch again, “The Bucket List”. We all gathered in our usual spots. Rob fell asleep. I begged for hair tickles, which Zandra gracefully gave me for a while, then cuddled with the boys on the floor. Reggie chewed away on his rubber chicken and drove us all crazy with the clucking noise the chicken made (but no one wanted to take the chicken away from him). We had popcorn. We oohed and ahhed over the places they visited in the movie that we want to go to, and I bawled my eyes out at the end.

Zach commented that I had not taken any pictures. “You have no pictures of Thanksgiving this year, Mom”. He had helped me prepare the turkey though, so he had taken a few pictures when we took it out of the oven (his first turkey)! I commented that he could forward me the pictures. “OK, but you didn’t get any real pictures” is what he replied.

And I didn’t. I have none. Not one picture of this Thanksgiving Day. Except those in my heart. You know those places that you sometimes see where you take a picture and say “The pictures don’t do it justice. You just can’t capture this all on a photo”?

How do you capture a family dinner – one of thousands that we have had and will have? Or how do you capture lying around our family room watching a movie we have all seen before? Can you document running errands, putting costumes on, bedtime routines, getting homework done, or going to church?

The pictures can’t ever really do it justice. It’s the feeling. The everyday feeling. The feeling of being home with these amazing spirits. The feeling of belonging. The feeling of this is where I am meant to be. The feeling of gratitude that this is my chosen family.

So many pictures were taken this Thanksgiving. My heart has captured them all.

Happy Thanksgiving.


Thanksgiving Gratitude — 35 Comments

    • I know – pictures in my heart – I look fantastic. So does everyone else, but I like to look at myself in those pics. It’s amazing that I have all these kids and don’t look a day over 25! Lol!

  1. Happy Thanksgiving!! Sounds to me like you got some of the very best kinds of pictures this year!!
    Glad that you had all your kiddos for awhile this weekend!
    And, that movie (The Bucket List) about did me in!!! (between all the puking and the ending)
    Kim recently posted…Race Recap and RecollectionsMy Profile

  2. Glad you were all together for Thanksgiving!!! When you had said that you weren’t doing much and turkey at home I had assumed kids were not there. Glad they were-sounds so much fun!
    And I love the pictures in your heart part..I love pics too but do find that sometimes the very best days and memories are those that could never be captured (or interrupted) by a camera.
    Sounds like a wonderful day and weekend.

    • Yes, it was fun to have all the kids – and not even have to fight for them as it was our weekend, and P was pretty easy going about the boys being here whenever the kids were. So I’m thankful for that:) I’m thankful for friendships too:))xo Glad you had a great Thanksgiving too!

  3. Even as a photographer who believes in the power of photos, sometimes it’s not enough. That’s why I write. And sometimes that’s not enough either for all of the words in my heart that don’t translate well.
    I know you get it.
    Happiest of Thanksgivings! I must have so many Canadian friends this year that I didn’t have last year, because I have found myself wishing many people a Happy Thanksgiving over the weekend. I like that!
    Tamara recently posted…Stuff That’s Big, Big, Big.My Profile

    • So glad for all your new Canadian connections! I’m grateful for all my new blogging connections. I love what you said about the power of photos and the power of words. I guess that’s why they created music and memories (and sunrises and sunsets) – for when photos and words just aren’t enough. xo

  4. Sometimes, for me, stopping to take a photo changes the tone of the occasion, or at the least, causes a distraction to that perfect moment that we want to get the picture of. Sometimes, the best place to hold those images is in our hearts, like you said. Glad you had such a lovely day. Love the new look of the blog.

    • It is so true – sometimes pulling the camera out can change the whole dynamic. I love replaying the images in my heart too and I can do that anytime!

  5. Happy Thanksgiving, Leah! Sounds like a truly wonderful weekend. Gratitude plays a big role in my life and I try to demonstrate it frequently to my girls. Sounds like you do the same and your kids recognize their many blessings, which is so wonderful to see. I love recording special moments on my camera too but you are right – their is no better recorder than your heart. Have a great week, my friend!
    Shannon @ The Heavy Purse recently posted…Five Smart Fall Money MovesMy Profile

    • Thank you! Gratitude is so important and I’m happy that my kids are able to feel grateful for so many things – they recognize their blessings!

    • LOL! No, Halloween is still Oct 31; we just have a lot of build up around that occasion! But, Thanksgiving is done. I kind of like it early -it’s a nice fall long weekend, and there is enough time between Thanksgiving and Christmas to build up the turkey cravings again!

    • I love it when my kids really appreciate each other and the time they spend together – it’s good to remember these comments when they are fighting with each other on a daily basis too:)

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