Remembering Thanksgiving

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What comes to your mind when Thanksgiving approaches? How do you remember Thanksgiving? It's a time when we give thanks to God and celebrate with family, friends and food. We also think on how this country was made. But there are folk like me who think about all of the above.

So as I get older, I reminiscence on my childhood Thanksgivings more often. They were always exciting because after Thanksgiving comes Christmas. It's also the time for my birthday and the beginning of cold weather.

Thanksgiving was a fun time for me, as a child being raised in the country. It meant a different kind of work. We had to get firewood for the heater and the fireplace to keep warm. We gathered wood for the big black wash pot to heat water. Wood was also gathered for the syrup kettle which was also used to clean hogs. The fire coals would be hot and popping. We would cook a lot on those coals. Yes it was a joyful time. Our cotton was picked, and the sweet potatoes were dug and bedded so they would not freeze during the winter.

Thanksgiving for me meant the neighbors would come and help my parents kill and process the hogs. They would butcher them, which is the modern term for “hog killing time”. Everyone would benefit however, because the meat was shared with all of the families in our community, The Promise land.

Thanksgiving reminds me of the prayer around the table with pies and cakes which we baked, and turkey, which we raised, with stuffing/ dressing and cranberry sauce. It was a time in which we could run and play. My dad would also start buying fruit; apples, oranges, pink grapefruit and tangerines, nuts and candy which he would give to children on the school bus.

While in bed at night, we would listen to the wind blow and hear the pecans falling to the ground. Picking up pecans meant we could sell them and have a little money to buy gifts for Christmas. The peanuts would also be gather and we would have parched peanuts to put in our sweet potatoes which we baked in the fire half or today fireplace. The peanuts also meant we could make peanut brittle candy.

You know what, remembering Thanksgiving means I will have to share more at another time when I will share prayer around the dinner table and school plays which includes the Indians and Pilgrims. It taught how the Indian showed love by helping the pilgrims. (more on neighbors helping neighbors). That's all I have ever known, caring and sharing. Remembering Thanksgiving means remembering to Give God thanks.

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