Since 2009 the hubby and I have selfishly taken over the holiday of Thanksgiving. I say selfishly because we host both sides of the family which means we don't have to bounce houses for once. The first year two years we had 27 people. This year we had 26 as my cousin Richie wasn't in attendance. You are probably wondering how we pull off such a feat. Well, we have a wonderful sunroom which converts very nicely into a long dining room. We borrow tables and chairs from the local high school where my mom works and everyone brings a dish to pass and/or a dessert. My sister-in-law and I take care of the turkey, the stuffing, and a couple sides that we can make on the stove top (since oven space is at a premium). I will tell you the first two years were chaos. Year one was just mainly because we had no idea what we were doing, our timing was off, and we over did it on food. Year two would have been perfect except for the fact that the turkey took forever since it was still a tiny bit frozen inside. This year was a piece of cake. We had a 26 lb turkey and he was thawing in the fridge since the Thursday before the holiday. This year I can especially count as a success because the left overs fit in one fridge. The prior two years we had so much food left over that a majority of it ended up in fridge out in the garage, aka Jay's "man cave." I guess it's like they say "third time's the charm."
Every year seeing all of our family in one place makes me feel extremely blessed. Usually one of the kids, either a cousin or a sibling of mine, will say the standard "Bless us oh lord" grace, however, this year my Grandfather came prepared. He said such a beautifully touching prayer over the meal and followed it up with "and that was from Dear Abby" which of course had us all chuckling, but the prayer itself was awesome enough that I thought I'd share his version on here:
Dear heavenly Father:
We thank you for the food we are about to enjoy here today and
we ask you to help us to remember the hungry.
We thank you for our health and ask that you help us to remember the sick.
We thank you for our family and friends here with us tonight and
ask that you help us to remember those who are without.
We thank your for our freedoms and ask that you help
us to remember those who are oppressed.
For all these blessings we are thankful in Jesus name, Amen.