Thanksgiving Day Reflections

Thanksgiving Day was a gathering of four interconnected familes that ranged in age from 18 months to 86 years.  We were cared for by at least two grandmothers and two mothers, and like the pilgrims and  Indians each family  brought food.

Eldon brought the meat from a 22 lb turkey.  He has devoloped his skill at roasting a turkey and taking the flavored meat off bones so that all carving could be done before we were seated at the table. On reflection last night, The Old Fool realized that he missed  seeing the roasted turkey being carried to the table and  carved as part of the Thanksgiving meal ceremony.  

I overheard my eleven year old grandson ask his father, How do you know which turkey has white meat and which has dark meat?  Carving the turkey in front of children is an educational event that we missed.  Oh well, so much for the ways of the young.  In addition to the turkey there was mashed potatoes, candied sweet potatoes, dressing (filling and stuffing). green beans, brocoli & cheese, (aforementioned grandsons favorite diish,) apple, pumpkin, and shoo fly pies and a few other dishes too numerous to mention.

After the meal the younger men went to the theatre below to watch the football game and sleep, the children went to the playroom below, and we who were older chated about life.  Three of us were pastors so there was plenty story telling.  We talked about the beloved ones who had left us in the past year.  The Old Fool had made copies of “I will not be afraid.”  distributed them and we sang the song in memory of Rhoda, Rachel and me traveling to Florida in 1950 and singing as we went. 

By mid afternoon grandson Daniel took me to his den.  (Daniel’s den!) Instead of lions, he has powerful  computer systems with which he can download Rhoda’s memorial services on The Old Fool’s Website. This will require at least a month’s colaboration between us,  so readers will have that time to anticipate.

Without saying it at the feast, The Old Fool was most grateful for the gift of forgiveness that Rhoda gave him.  When asked what made it possible to live together so many years we answered without consulting, “forgiveness”

This afternoon, Eldon, Conrad, Zack and The Old Fool  plan to go to the Jasper Pulasky state park to see the gathering of the Sandhill Cranes enroute to Florida.  Sensible birds!


About Martin Lehman

I was born 92 years ago, the son of a Mennonite pastor and organic gardener in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. At age 10 I was baptized as a member of the Marion Mennonite Church. I own the "Old Fool" moniker because I want to walk the Jesus Way even though the world and much of the church takes me as a fool for doing so. In my life I have moved from being a young conservative to an elderly radical. I tell that story in My Faith Journey posted on my website.
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6 Responses to Thanksgiving Day Reflections

  1. Hello, Old Fool. A mutual relative, Joseph Horst, put me on to your writings. From this little tale here, you are one that I will enjoy reading. I look forward to hearing the wisdom of the “old fools” of my heritage as I seek to try and find my way as a minister and “young fool” today.

  2. Connie F. Stauffer says:

    Hello there Cousin Martin! So nice to read your reflections on Thanksgiving Day. Yes, the “ways of the young” are with us, but what a blessing in our lives.

    Greetings to cousins Lois and Roy when you chance to meet them again.

    Warm regards,
    Cousin Connie

  3. SaraAlice says:

    Hello, Martin,
    Some of the sandhill cranes have come to us. I saw about 8 flying along C-111 just before the entrance to Everglades Nat. Pk. I wonder where they’ve been and where they’re going. BTW, the vermillion flycatcher is back. He’s supposed to be in Mexico and not south Florida. He’s very red and very beautiful. Look him up. He’s even much prettier than the book.
    Traditions and good ways are passed in our family too. Amy’s daughter Jenni made all our pies this year. We now have a name for one that shows up sometimes. While at a family reunion in Ohio, I came across bumbleberry pie which is all the leftover berries you happen to have. We are calling our version bumblefruit pie since it had cherries, blueberries, apples, cranberries, pineapple and “fruta de something or other” which someone gave Amy and we don’t know it in English. Anyway, it turned out quite tastey and fun. Jenni’s following steps of her great Aunt Selma Huebner and her great grandmother Emma Yoder and her mom, Amy Z. Grimes. Warm and happy blessings to you all. SaraAlice

  4. Alicia Dirmyer says:

    I really enjoyed reading this. Makes me think of my own family. My dad was in the hospital for Thanksgiving this year. It really opens your eyes to what you are truly thankful for.

    Alicia Dirmyer

    • These holidays are a time to reflect. Christmas will soon be here. I was at the festival of carols at Goshen College’s Sauder Hall. The sounds nd words were beautiful. I will try to describe it in a post.

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