Posted by: Jim E | November 23, 2010

Thanksgiving 1987…Oh, I Remember That Year…

Most memories of special days kind of “run together” if you know what I mean…we can’t just “pull up” let’s say, Christmas 1990 for instance…or July 4th 2005…you get what I mean…unless something specific and of great import happened on that day, they just “run together”…for me Christmas has always been special…since I was a kid, I remember how important it was…we had all the traditions and what mom fixed for Christmas dinner…and all the rest…it was true for Thanksgiving too…we always had a traditional Thanksgiving feast…and leading up to those special days of Thanksgiving and Christmas, we did special things…and Judie and I have continued many of those traditions right up to the present, added a few and passed them on to our kids…so, for as long as I can remember we have carried on in a very similar way…

Is it any wonder then, that I can’t “pull” any one particular holiday out of the vast array of those special days…they just stack on top of each other, year after year…and if you asked me to tell you what the 1972 Christmas was like, I couldn’t tell you, except to say it was a lot like all the rest…so when we talk about Thanksgiving or Christmas, since they are traditional, I would be telling you about lots of Christmases or Thanksgivings, not just one…not that they are boring mind you…each one is special and celebrated as though it would be our last…but they do tend to “run together”…like glass slides stacked on top of one another, and looking down through them into our past…

So how can I remember Thanksgiving 1987???…let me tell you…it was a day to remember, one of the last that all of our kids were home for Thanksgiving…Jay, Jared, Marisa and Jess were all in college (Jared and Marisa had married in August of 1987)…Jeremy was still in high school…it was one of the warmest Thanksgivings we could remember…the sun was shining and we had to drop the blinds in the dining room because it was so hot (in Minnesota the angle of the sun is so low that time of year, it poured in the South windows)…it was in the high 50’s I suppose…and we had our traditional meal…Turkey, Swedish sausage, Down South dressing, Oyster stuffing (Sidebar…it is stuffing if you put it “in the bird”, it is dressing if you do it in a side dish…end Sidebar)…mashed potatoes and giblet gravy, green bean hot dish (Sidebar…hot dish is “Minnesotan” for casserole…end Sidebar)…some other veggies, squash, pickles, relishes, rolls, a special raspberry jello/w sour cream and marshmallow topping (Sidebar…not a desert but used like a sorbet, a “palate cleanser”, just wonderful…end Sidebar), pumpkin pie, apple pie, pecan pie, maybe cherry or blueberry or custard to make it four and whipped cream…

But you know, none of that was the reason I remember Thanksgiving 1987…this is the reason remember Thanksgiving 1987…his name was Muffin…Muffin was Jeremy’s Christmas gift the year before in 1986 (this is his picture in 1986)…he was a Shih Tzu…Jeremy wanted a dog and Judie thought it would be good for him to have a companion…thus…along came Muffin…it was an early Christmas gift that year…Jeremy and Muffin became inseparable…he slept with him and every waking moment the two of them were together…as with most family dogs, he became part of our family…and he was a special dog…even after many years being gone, he still holds a place in our home…let’s say when he had to be put down…there were many tears over that loss…but memories linger on…

But what about Thanksgiving 1987???…Oh my, the day before Thanksgiving, disaster struck…Judie had put Muffin outside while she did some things…she was busy and had to run to the store…when she got back she remembered Muffin…but as hard as she searched and yelled his name…no Muffin…when I got home and Jeremy got home we went about making up fliers with Muffin’s picture on them…we put them all over the area…frankly, I thought we had lost him for good…but drove around looking for him…and after all that effort we decided we had done all we could do…all of us, Judie, Jeremy and myself were at a loss…upset at losing such a good friend…we were heartbroken…all we could think of is that someone had picked him up and taken him…Shih Tzu’s are a desirable dog for many people…

We got up the next day…it was Thanksgiving Day…spent the morning fixing the meal of the day…but keeping an eye out for Muffin…no luck…the meal time came and all around the table were a bit down…all of us felt sorry for Jeremy, he was miserable…we were part way through the meal…everyone around the table…I went to the kitchen for something…I was at the sink looking out the window…our back yard wasn’t big, but it butted up against a large empty field…all grass and used then for grazing horses…it was lined with furrows from when it used to be farmed…as I gazed across the field on that beautiful day…my eyes caught a glimpse, way out in the field, of a little black and white animal jumping over the furrows in the field, you know how I felt…that feeling just billowed up inside me…I yelled, “There’s Muffin!!!”…everyone at the table jumped up…they raised the shades at the windows and looked out…Jess ran out the door in his stocking feet…onto the deck, out on the lawn, jumped the fence and out into the field…and that quick too…

By the time Jess got back to the yard with Muffin, everyone was out on the deck and in the yard…my mom took this picture of Jeremy, in bare feet, with Muffin…what a homecoming…everyone was laughing/crying…you know how that happens…it was a powerful moment of relief, for he was found…and emotional release, Jeremy’s dog was home…Jeremy is a special child…to all of us…and all of us were thankful…it is what we prayed for…Jeremy’s dog was found…Muffin had been gone for a little over a day…he was dirty, grass and straw was stuck in his hair but he was home…you may not be able to read the emotion on Jeremy’s face in the picture but then, maybe you can…let’s just say he was happy…no, elated and thankful, on that Thanksgiving 1987…

So we will celebrate this Thanksgiving…2010…with the same expectation…well, maybe not exactly the same but with the same thanks we had that day…so many years ago…and we will talk of that day again, as part of our Thanksgiving 2010…part of the tradition of this family, blessed beyond what we deserve…but thankful for all the blessings…

I hope you have enjoyed the story…really a Thanksgiving feast of thankfulness…pie anyone???…


Advertisements

Responses

  1. Happy Thanksgiving Jim to you and your family!
    ~Julie


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: