Thursday, October 7, 2010

Thanksgiving Weekend

Gem and I are heading south tomorrow for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. We will be spending it in Abbotsford (about an hour from Vancouver) with my sister Suzanne and her partner, Jeff. Altogether, there will be twenty-two people at their house celebrating this time of gratitude.

I have been designated desserts. Thus, my morning has been one of epic domesticana. The whole condo is filled with nutmeggy warmth and pumpkinny goodness. I have baked three pumpkin pies and two apple pies, all from scratch. A Pumpkin Ginger cake sits on the counter cooling. This cake, spiced with ginger and cinnamon and cloves, and studded with crystallized ginger and plump sultanas, is a family favourite. I will be icing it with cream-cheese frosting when I am at my sister's house. As I stirred and measured and tasted, I thought of the ritual and hospitality of welcoming, of daylong roasting and feasting. Indulgence, contentment. Full bellies and unbuttoned pants and tucking in for winter.

I have so much to be thankful for:

Thankful for my husband, Gem, who loves me unfailingly and unconditionally.

Thankful for my family, for the belonging we give to each other.

Thankful for my wonderful friends, who love and forgive me much.

Thankful for the ebb and flow of so many spiritual traditions which cover this country like a blessed wave from the ocean to the mountains, to the rainforests, to the tiny prairie towns, to the arctic, to the rainy urban cappuccinos being sipped in dozens of cities.

Thankful that I understand that grief comes to human hearts of all colours and creeds and ways of being.

Thankful for my good health, and the ability to work and play and think.

Thankful for the stories and poems and photographs which anoint my heart and soul.

Thankful for YOU.


  1. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, Jo! Enjoy your holiday, my friend. Safe travels. x

    (I can smell the nutmeginess from here!)

  2. A lovely post, as always, but I have to say I am a little confused. I know there is an American Thanksgiving Day (which I assume is giving thanks for getting out of this place) but what does Canadian Thanksgiving Day celebrate? Whatever the answer may be : have a good celebration.