Just before supper last night, Alan and I took a walk down our alley pretending that we strolling down a country lane in Vermont. There are very few, if any, places in Lubbock where the trees form a canopy over the street. There at the curve of our alley just before it meets up with Elkhart Avenue stands a royal tent of fiery reds, oranges, and yellows. At 5:30 yesterday afternoon, these brilliant standards were backlit by a deep azure sunset painted with bold fuchsia stripes stemming from a dazzling golden center. As we meandered along the dumpster-lined path holding hands, Alan remarked that people travel from all over the country to witness the grandeur of the famed fall foliage of the East coast, when all they really need to do is take a quiet walk down an alley on the Llano Estacado of the Texas Panhandle. Standing there in the quiet chill of the evening amidst our tiny patch of Autumn splendor, we basked in a moment of peace and deep satisfaction.
The north wind blew into town last night leaving a frosty, gray Thanksgiving morning. Reluctantly slipping from the warm cocoon of my covers, I tiptoed into the kitchen to check on the turkey brining in the Wheelie Cooler in the corner of my kitchen. It was still there. Slowly, the house began to wake sending sleepy-eyed boys shuffling towards the promise of hot pancakes drenched in maple syrup. As I sit here typing, their voices are softly rumbling over the hum of the "pregame" Macy's Thanksgiving Parade hoopla on TV. Several times Alan has peeked his head in to ask where he might find ingredients that have been stored on the same shelf since we set up housekeeping in this house 18 years ago. Bryce stopped in a minute ago and asked, "Are you blogging?" Alan followed him in here to show him the nifty Clap-On-Clap-Off Christmas garland encircling the window. His hands cannot produce the proper pitch needed to communicate "on," so I wheeled my desk chair around and offered up a couple of my feminine higher pitched claps that the garland welcomed with a twinkle of red lights. With a "See, Bryce!?" and a "Cool!" they left me to my keyboard.
Sitting here in the glow of a Christmas garland dotted with Coca Cola ornaments with our cuddle-craving cat, Lily, pacing back and forth between me and my computer screen meowing a "come hither" meow, I feel safe, loved, and peaceful. My Baylor boys are home. I can feel their presence once again. Later today, we will call Jonathan who is spending this Thanksgiving in Chicago. Even though he was home just a couple of weekends ago, I can feel a lump gathering in my throat at the thought of the empty place at our Thanksgiving table. My only comfort is the fact that he doesn't particularly enjoy the traditional foods of the day.
My reverie has been broken. "Hey, Carolyn! The parade is starting! Come in here with the family!" Bryce just came with a big bowl of pumpkin pie filling for me to admire, "Smell this, Mom!"
Ahhh. Thanksgiving. I'm off to savor the day. How blessed I am. God is good.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, friends!