Happy Thanksgiving to each and every one of you!

It is Thanksgiving morning and my pies are all made and cookies are decorated (I was the dessert lady this year). We just got back from Mass and are watching some of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, a tradition from Ben’s family’s Thanksgiving mornings that we are carrying on with our kids. They are loving dancing to all the music and seeing the incredible performers. Rosie is especially excited for Santa’s announcement that comes at the end.

Before heading to church I realized I never even drafted a blog post for today and I wondered if I would have a chance to write something. I also had to pause to try and put into words all of the many things I am thankful for this year.

We have so much to be thankful for. 3 beautiful children, a 4th growing well as we anxiously await their birth. We not only have a home that fits our family during our transition, we are in the process of buying a home in Del Rio, where we will be moving early next year. We are surrounded by family without needing to travel, something that Ben and I have not had in our 6 years of marriage. We are healthy, our children are thriving, Ben has a job that provides for our needs. There is much to be thankful for.

I am especially thankful for our Catholic faith and the continuity it gives us as we move from place to place. The familiarity of the liturgical rhythms  offer our kids a sense of security and hominess beyond anything we could provide. Today at Mass I was able to see this in full force with John and it really hit me just how grateful I am for this faith community.

John had a good first half of Mass, but started to get upset when he had to share some of the things he brought into church. His new thing is to be “grouchy” and put on a sour face. This was, of course, during the consecration. As we waited for communion to start, John was at the end of the pew. I told him he had the opportunity to “make a change” (our key phrase for the kids to let them know they need to turn their attitude around or consequences will ensue). Since he was on the end, he could have the job of leading our family to communion, leading our family to Jesus. He stood up a little straighter and said “I can do that Mommy.”

We waited for the pew in front of us to empty and then John led us. He made sure Clare stayed behind him and didn’t run into anyone. He did a good job. When we got back I told him that he did well. He was beaming and said to me,

Mommy, I made a change during communion! I’m not grouchy anymore!

Be still my heart! Isn’t this exactly what the gift of communion, of Jesus’ very Body and Blood, is supposed to do to each of us? What an incredible gift Jesus has given us. Eucharist is food for our journey of life. But it is also a powerful, the most powerful, agent of change in our lives. When we receive Christ, we are more intimately brought into communion, union, with Christ and with each other. We change.

There are a great many things to be thankful for. Eucharist even means thanksgiving! I am so thankful that I didn’t have anything written for today so that I could share this beautiful experience of joy, transformation and gratitude with you.

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us!

thanksgivingDaily Graces.

Happy Thanksgiving


Love is a fruit in season at all times, and within the reach of every hand. – Mother Teresa


Today we celebrate Thanksgiving. Today is a day when we slow down, gather together, and bring to mind the things that we are grateful for. For some this year, there will be many things to be thankful for. Others may struggle, perhaps it was a year of hardship, difficulty or loss. Each year is unique and therefore, each Thanksgiving is filled with different hopes, joys, and sorrows.

This beautiful quote from Mother Teresa is appropriate for today. Regardless of the year you have had, love is always in season. God is Love. God’s love for each of us is never ending, untiring and ever merciful. It is never out of season, it is always in style.

It is my hope and prayer today that you are able to find time to spend with God, our creator and lover. I hope that you are able to recognize that no matter the year you’ve had, God’s love has been with you and will continue to be. When we extend our hands in thanksgiving, we realize our loving God has already filled them.

Happy Thanksgiving



Here we are, November 22, just a few days away from Thanksgiving. This time of year is complicated. On one hand, we are preparing our homes and tables for Thanksgiving, a day to remember our blessings, to be grateful for what we have and share with our family and friends. On the other hand, we are bombarded with sales, merchandise and gift ideas for the coming of Christmas. The sense of urgency in these commercials and sales pitches would make a visitor think that the anticipated holiday was mere days away, instead of weeks.

I understand that this is a sensitive issue, and as a Catholic, I am very much in the minority when it comes to dating the official “Christmas Season.” Regardless of when you start to celebrate the Christmas season, I hope that you are a person who still celebrates Thanksgiving.

Until today, I was unaware some companies are starting to use Thanksgiving as yet another marketing tool. In a series of new Black Friday sales commercials, Verizon has turned Thanksgiving on it’s head. Take a minute and actually watch the commercial (it’s only 30 seconds long). Did you catch what they did?

Thanksgiving is a time of year when we are supposed to look outside of ourselves. We recognize what we have been given, what we are grateful for. We give thanks, be that to God, to family, to friends, our nation, our community, whoever! Abraham Lincoln, in his Thanksgiving Proclamation of 1863, said

It has seemed to me fit and proper that they [the gifts of God, especially His mercy] should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People.

I’m not hearing anything about getting. I’m not hearing anything about wanting more or I want it now. I’m not trying to fight the Black Friday craze, (please drive safely and bring extra patience with you anyone who plans to partake). But I couldn’t let that commercial pass me by without addressing it.

Thanksgetting? Really, Thanksgetting? Have we descended so low that this is now acceptable? Is this what we want to teach our children the day is about? Is this representative of our accepted values?

I’m not asking you to like or dislike the commercial on youtube. I’m not even asking you to share this blog post. I just would like to ask anyone who reads this to stop for a moment and evaluate your priorities. Where are your thoughts these days, are they in the spirit of gratitude, or a spirit of desire?

What holiday will you be celebrating this week, Thanksgiving or Thanksgetting?