Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving and more

I'm thankful for so many things I've been blessed with in my life. I often find myself thinking how thankful I am for even the smallest things... Like my fuzzy slippers that keep my ice-cold feel warm (speaking of... I just reminded myself to go get them!)... Or the little toaster oven that can bake just a few cookies in under 15 minutes from start of preheat to eating time... Or the dimmer switch in my bathroom that my handy man so nicely installed for me (after months of me begging him to grab one and put in, hehe) so I don't blind myself in the mornings with crazy-insane bright lights... who ever thought that was a good idea anyway?? It's so much better to get ready in the half-dark bathroom. :-) At least it is for my eyes.

Anyway, back to the subject. Small things are so important. But the big things have the huge impact. One of the things I am most thankful for in this life is family. Mine is incredibly supportive, loving, caring, funny, and so great to be around... and that's extended family as far out as I've ever met. Not much goes on around here without family being present... holidays, of course, being a primary example.

This year's Thanksgiving was a little different schedule than we're used to, but so far, it's been a blast. We're actually having another get-together tomorrow, so a few of us are getting two Thanksgivings, haha. Yesterday was hanging out with the Ezzell clan, and I so enjoyed it all. I absolutely love my family, and I mean that in all honesty. It's just good to spend time with people.

So, now that the sappy part is out of the way, here's a little photo-story of Thanksgiving, yesterday...

(All that really happened prior to this photo, that's worth mentioning, was before we even got out of the car at the grandparents' house. Jacob and I went earlier than everybody else, so I could make my casserole and we could hang out with them a bit. As we turned onto the street they live on, my heart jumped into my throat at the sight of a fire truck down at the next block. I know my eyes are bad, but I always think the worst, and it certainly did look to be near their house. Jacob, always casual and unassuming, assured me it was nothing. Turns out, the truck was actually at the house right next door to the grandparents' house. The guys were in the process of leaving, and nothing appeared to be wrong. Haha Grandmom didn't even know they'd been there, so there obviously wasn't a big to-do. Thank goodness. So we proceeded with our morning. :-) )



I made my casserole at Grandmom's...


While the guys did the usual... :-)




Dad did come play Turkey Carver for a while...




So I took Dad's place in the hang-out room...




Took a few pictures before the meal...




This is actually my only food plate shot... this is one of Jacob's "pose" faces - haha, I promise he really was having a good time :-) ...




I got evidence of everybody chowin' down...




Jacob and I took our usual places at the "kids" table (as it will probably always be called) - no worries, we still like it...




Got a shot of the dessert spread (and a dog trying to be sneaky) before we dug in...




All we Ezzells have our quirks... Alli's is apparently a love of mac and cheese (we already knew that one!) alongside chocolate dessert... (no worries, she did at least admit that the bites with both tasted strange, haha)...




And a nice shot before we left...


And along with dessert always comes the time to sit around and have good conversation. I like getting little slice-of-life videos, and I grabbed one of a funny story here. Dad is talking about the happenings of their wedding day - Granddad had to go into surgery that same day, so Mom and Dad left from the wedding, in all the attire, and drove straight down the Interstate all the way to see Granddad... and headed right into the ER after hours to go find his room.

video

As we were seeing Connie and Steve and the girls off outside, the 6:00 bells began to chime at the church down the street. This is something my dad grew up hearing, as they ring hymns every day at 6PM. It's such a beautiful sound... I captured a bit of some of them. It was dark out, so the video might be boring if you don't like hymns. But I grew up with so many of them in church, and all of these were ones I knew by heart. I loved sitting out there last night and listening to them. Since it was Thanksgiving Day, they added an additional fourth song, since they usually only play three. Yesterday's selections were fitting... "Because He Lives," a song I'm racking my brain for but can't remember for the lift of me, "In the Garden," and "How Great Thou Art." These videos are of the last two, in respective order.


video


video


So that's about it for Thanksgiving 2009, Part 1. Part 2 comes tomorrow.

Today was an interesting break inbetween the two. Last year was one of the few years I've ever actually gotten up early and fought the crowds to get some Black Friday deals, and I definitely scored on some stuff then (although I basically got all Christmas shopping done then!). I'm trying to not spend much this time around though, despite the fact that there are SO many good deals, and so many things I'd like to have. So in my typical sales paper browsing I do on Thanksgiving Day, I made a list of the few items I was looking for. And last night, I was thrilled to find that many of the places I was considering going today had everything online too. So I was able to get one item I wanted online. I ended up able to get up and take my time this morning, and Jason and I headed out late morning to check out a few things. Wolf Camera was a cinch, and they even let you order the items that are out of stock in the store at the sale price... I love it when stores don't pull the rip-off with the fine print (3 minimum per store, no rainchecks... blah blah blah). Kohls was a different story... I only wanted a few clothes items, so I walked towards the line areas with said items in hand. Haha, I think my jaw probably dropped when I saw the line. It was INSANE. I honestly can't believe people were waiting in it - some only had a few shirts or what not. Haha, so I promptly turned around and put the items back. Jason had dropped me off, and was so ready to get out of the parking lot - apparently it was a mad house. And this was even at 1:00... guess people were trying to make the doorbuster deadline, haha. The mall was even worse... so we stopped and called it a day.

Something noteworthy did present itself before our first stop today. We parked right in front of the camera store, next to the sidewalk. There was a man there tending to his baby in a stroller, and there was a puppy right next to them, with his leash tied to the bench. The man was kind of grinning at the dog but not interacting, which I found odd. When we came back out of the store, the man was gone, but the puppy was still there, confirming my thought that the dog didn't belong to the man.  A few people walking by kept crouching down to pet it a while, but then would get up and keep on walking. I kind if asked aloud to Jason what we could do, because someone obviously had left it or was too busy with their shopping to make arrangements for their dog. We left, because people kept stopping and tending to the dog. I was pretty worried (aka ticked off) though... animal cruelty and negligence is something I don't take lightly at all. I won't get into all that... but it just makes me angry - no matter if someone actually left the dog there on purpose, knowing that a kind stranger would take care of what they're too lazy to do themselves... or if someone was just so incompetent and uncaring that they decided to tie up their puppy while they did a little shopping or had lunch in a nice heated restaurant. I don't care, there's no excuse. We had lunch nearby, so we drove back by afterwards to check. I was fully prepared to pull the guilt trip and at least beg Jason to drive us to take the dog to the SPCA adoption center if it was still there, because it certainly didn't deserve to go back to the people who left it there, even if they did plan to come back. (Yes, I had already jokingly mentioned "rescuing" the puppy ourselves, and let it become part of our family... and how it could conveniently save us adoption fees in the dog we eventually want to get, haha... and that "joke" was quite denied... oh well, in due time.) Thankfully, the puppy wasn't there any more. I'm happy that it's at least out of the cold. I can only hope that it's with somebody more responsible now. If I could have, I would have had no problem taking that dog home without even a note left on the bench. I just pray he's happy, warm, and cozy - it's reeeeally getting cold out tonight!

Hope everyone had a great holiday yesterday and is getting to enjoy a long weekend...

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