Sunday, November 30, 2008
obelis' first thanksgiving
about a month ago, i suddenly realized that thanksgiving was quickly approaching and my grammy's stuffing was miles away. that was a sad, sad day. truth is: i love thanksgiving. i love stuffing, family, casseroles, friends, gratitude, gravy, indians, pies upon pies upon pies, and the simplicity of the tradition. i love thanksgiving.
as i sat there sulking, i thought- if i love this holiday so much, why don't i share it? after all, we are the only americans at our work. so, that day at lunch i suggested the idea of having a pot luck thanksgiving lunch at work for the holiday. nothing big- just something to share the tradition with our coworkers....i had no idea this suggestion would elicit such a positive response. the next thing we know, work is shortened to a half day, management is ordering 2 turkeys and everybody's facebook status changed to 'so-and-so is excited for their first thanksgiving!'
as we started planning the event, i quickly realized that the only idea our coworkers had concerning this holiday was what they had seen in the movies. you get together and gorge...the end. cade and i decided to really get festive and make the dinner event focus on giving thanks and a spirit of gratitude rather than just gorging. we interviewed everyone at work and had them tell things they are thankful for and then compiled these clips in with a short movie we prepared on the meaning of thanksgiving. when we finally sat down for the feast, there were no yams, no pumpkin pie, no green bean casserole- however - the table was beautiful, everybody had prepared something delicious and the turkeys only cost our management 350 dollars (seriously...they must have been glazed in gold).
everyone loved the movie we made and it really was fun sharing this tradition with our friends from all over the world. we missed our families and the fun back home- but cade and i truly are counting our blessings and are thankful for all we have learned here in belgium.
i will admit that shortly after planning our work thanksgiving, we were invited to an american's home (the moon's) where she had invited some families from the ward over to her house for a belated celebration (no work or school was canceled on thursday, or course). this time- there was stuffing, yams, 11 different kinds of pies and the whole nine yards. we were able to spend the meal with some really fascinating people who have done so much with their lives. i tuly admire what many of these american families are accomplishing overseas. we ate until we could barely move and cade had fifths on pie. fifths.
so while our thanksgiving this year wasn't traditional by american standards, we were able to spend it with great friends. we only have about 2 1/2 weeks until we come home and we are trying to squeeze every last bit of adventure out of europe. we are excited to see our families and friends but at the same time- we are sad to say goodbye to so many great people.