For the first we joined lots of new friends and headed to the Sharps’ home, where I was offered my first employment in Japan in the form of one of my favorite English classes. The next day we moved into our J house with the kitties! Year two saw Thanksgiving at our house, the easiest hosting ever because the Olivers, Mays and Sharps all had their own favorite dishes they wanted to bring. So fun and relaxed! That fall the leaves flamed out into the most glorious colors I could imagine—one my standout memories of the country. And last year my parents visited and we celebrated early since Chris deployed the day before Thanksgiving.
But this year we are back in Texas with our tiny baby, who of course tops my thankful list. Isn’t he so handsome? We get to be with Chris’ family today and tomorrow head to my family to see all four kids, spouses, and all NINE grandkids in one chaotic bundle!
Last night Chris’ mom rocked a fussy Isaac into a peaceful slumber so I could make my two fall favorites: upside-down pumpkin pie and cranberry sauce. I told them my family’s tradition as I bustled around making a mess in her kitchen:
The night before Thanksgiving I always make the cranberry sauce. My dad leads the men in the Manly Art of Pie Making. Everyone prepares something—kids old enough to be awake are set to work toasting bread and hacking it to pieces with bladeless knives for the stuffing. One year we were short handed and my dad admitted that important job was created solely to occupy us while they got things ready before we were old enough to be of real help. Hey!
And an important aspect of this tradition is the music: The World Turned Upside-Down is music popular in England around the American Revolution. My parents got it in Colonial Williamsburg when we were little and gave us each a copy when we got married. Our copy is somewhere on the Pacific Ocean, but we’ll have it in time for next year. The tradition lives on!