The Spaces Between Your Fingers

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This is my grandmother Cathy's memory. We spend Thanksgiving every year at either my Aunt’s house or ours, switching off every year. Thanksgiving is her favorite holiday. She loves it because it brings the family together.

Cathy sat in the dining room at the head of the right side of the table. She beamed with joy surrounded by her family members loving and laughing at the dinner table. The food was just beginning to be unveiled, an ocean of sweet smelling aromas floods her nostrils as the covers are removed. Her stomach grumbles as she looks upon the vast spread. Turkey, mashed potatoes, broccoli casserole, sweet potatoes, corn, ham, green beans, gravy, rolls, it was a meal fit for a king. But there were no kings here. Just a happy, noisy family ready to dig in to Thanksgiving dinner.

            “Before we dive in let’s first say grace,” Cathy spoke up. Everyone held hands and dipped their heads, eyes closed in silence. “Dear Lord, thank you for this wonderful meal on such a lovely day spent with our family. Give us good health and bring us happiness in the times to come. I know mom and pop and Ron are all looking down on us. I wish they could be here with us today. Let’s keep them with us as we share today with each other and be thankful for the ones we have.” Murmurs of ‘amen’ scatter about the table with a few smiles shared as everyone began to load their plates up with whatever happened to be in front of them.

            Hearty helpings of food were scooped onto plates as various dishes were passed around and shared. Quiet, friendly conversation filled the holes among the clattering of spoons and forks on dishes. The same familiar jokes made every year were cracked. Most of the men in the family were slightly distracted by the football game playing on mute in the background.

            All the while Cathy sat eating her food, listening to and watching her family, chiming into the conversation when appropriate. Thanksgiving was her favorite holiday. In her eyes, it was the purest holiday. There is no stress from having to give gifts. It is just a day to sit down with everyone in your family and share a meal while enjoying each other’s’ company. It was something she held dear to her heart ever since she was a little girl. She has always loved the food and the bringing together of family that occurs.

            Even after dinner is consumed and cleared away, they would still sit at the dining room table talking about whatever was brought up. At a certain point following the meal the table would be set with all kinds of fall themed desserts like apple and pumpkin pie, pumpkin cookies, and other various pastries.

            At the end of the night not only would Cathy’s heart be swelling with joy at the day’s events, but her stomach would be as full as it would be all year as well.

Family Thanksgiving

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