This Thanksgiving was different from most of all the ones held in our home because our turkey was given a name, Larry Byrd. You see, my dear daughter-in-law, Jenn, offered way in advance to make the turkey. She wanted to order a turkey from a farm owner that sells in her local farmer’s market that she visits and supports nearly every Saturday morning. I could not turn down that offer! So during the long day of preparations in her kitchen, Jenn’s husband, Trent, our #2 son, gave bird the name Larry, Larry Byrd. So through out the day, Trent posted on Facebook “the ball’s in your court, Larry” and “You’re traveling, Larry!” Throughout the day, of course, many folks joked about “It’s all about the baste, ’bout the baste!” LOL Jenn even made dressing and stuff Larry prior to baking. That was a special treat, especially enjoyed by Roy, since that is the way his Mom used to do the stuffing. We even saw a picture of the scrumptious looking turkey on Facebook before Trent packed him up for delivery; “over the river and throughout the woods to Grandmom’s Berkshire Park home.” The sad part – I never got a picture of Jenn, the domestic goddess, holding her trophy culinary dish 😦 There was too much commotion and last minute dish preparation and getting everyone to the table once they arrived. The homemade gravy she made looked so dark and delicious. Gravy making was always a culinary challenge to me but Jenn seemed to master it with no problem.
The pictures I posted are just random shots I took when time allotted and I actually remembered to take a picture. 😦 We took a family group photo at the very end of our celebration day and maybe later I will get a copy of that to share. For now, I reflect of miscellaneous other activities of the day: Patrick mashing the potatoes, Trent playing soccer with Landon, Jenny multitasking all day long with nursing, feeding, changing diapers, making the traditional corn/green bean casserole, rolls, ice cream (even a delicious Coconut/Soy ice-cream she and I could enjoy), washing dishes, and a million other mothering tasks. The kids enjoyed some crafts that I contributed. I actually captured the moment when Kinsley was inserting the puzzle piece of a pumpkin in my puzzle/book 🙂 It was a special treat for Jenny and I to get a few minutes to play two piano duet, two Thanksgiving traditional songs: We Gather Together and Come Ye Thankful People Come. We were all glad Grandmae was doing so well after fracturing 3 ribs only 10 days earlier. She especially enjoyed getting to hold Macie several times. One random memory that has only a visual picture in my mind was everyone talking and laughing after the meal. Of course, Patrick’s brothers had to tease him about not having a girl friend yet and maybe they needed to sign him up for E Harmony! Lots of little things to be grateful for that do not overshadow our big thanks for a family that was all together with lots of food and fun times for all, even Savannah was decked in a Thanksgiving bow and savored all the extra treats and love she got.
Thanks for reading my ramblings. I just want to say thanks to all my family for all that went together to make the day memorable. Thanks, too, to Larry Byrd, for the ultimate sacrifice! 😦
Looking at these pictures you would wonder what fancy restaurant at which we were eating but it was the Bob Jones University Kambach Dining Room (the newly remodeled main dining room). It just so happened that the opening night of the BJU faculty/staff meeting and dining event fell on the actual evening of our 35th wedding anniversary. So I teased Roy that he went to a lot of trouble and expense to add so many friends to our guest list and so much gourmet food to celebrate our anniversary. Bill Apelian even came to our table and beautifully sang Happy Anniversary to us. The Armark Food Service folks did an amazing job with this event! The menu included roast beef with a variety of bread options, brushetta and a gourmet salsa, delicious grilled fresh vegetables, fried ravioli with pasta sauce, chocolate fountain with lots of fresh fruit and marshmallows for dipping, and variety of other desserts so beautifully displayed. This dinner was the first big event served by the food service folks following a summer of complete renovation of the back kitchen and preparation area. All the fine renovations that you see in these pictures were done last summer. This summer they had to dig up and redo everything in the back area starting with the drains in the floor and the floor itself. So this was the summer to replace the fryers, ovens, vents, steamers, dishwashing machine, etc. etc. So it was a celebration evening for Roy to see all the work he was responsible for coming to a complete end (except fine tuning stuff of course). Praise God that this remodeling project is done! The students have just about the finest college dining facility available. Thanks to Adam Summers for leading the Armark folks.
This summer I have had the pleasure of meeting once a week at a friend’s home to discuss a book we are all reading: Twelve Extraordinary Women (“How God shaped women of the Bible and What He wants to do with you”) by John MaCarthur. This group is made up mostly of women who meet during the school year for the structured Ladies Bible Study (LBS) at HPBC but others have joined for the summer. The group has become so close and thrive so well on the weekly study that they decided to continue meeting during the summer in the home of one of the willing members to do a book study. Last summer they studied One Thousand Gifts.
Each chapter features a different woman in the Bible. We have already studied Eve, Sarah, Rahab, and this week Ruth. This morning I reread the chapter on Ruth and reflected on the blessing of my two daughter-in-laws. They come from two very different backgrounds but each have taken their gifts and talents and developed them in commendable ways. They both are teachers with some training in the education field; one teaches college students who need help making up deficiencies in basic study skills (English, math, study methods, writing. etc.) and the other teaches her young children whose deficiencies are their natural bent to selfishness and laziness set in our immoral society.
My greatness joy comes from seeing the way my Jennifers love my sons. Lord knows, I could never have selected or arranged better matches for each of my young men. I know it isn’t easy to live with hard working, strong willed, driven men yet that is what makes them leaders in their careers. Their backgrounds are similar and not perfect either but God has used their specifics talents and gifts to develop them into the “teachers” and leaders they have become. The neatest thing is to see how they have become more like friends; respectful of their differences. They both chose women who are very attractive yet have an inner beauty that is commendable.
I read this morning on page 80 of our book of Naomi’s reflection on Ruth, the “faithful Moabite girl who had so graciously proven her loyalty, generosity, diligence, and strength of character.” I wrote in the margin, “these are the characteristics of my Jennifers. Naomi stated that her daughter-in-law, who loved her, was better to her than seven sons. So on a lighter note, I will say I only have one more son, who I would even allow to marry another Jennifer, if she would be as wonderful has these two but Lord knows, I don’t think I could have survived living in a house with 7 Hulehan boys. Three almost did me in!
A new friend who saw my Etsy dresses asked me if I would make matching dresses for her and her 5 daughters for Mother’s Day. She said she liked the navy and white chevron peasant style dress on my Etsy Site. I ordered 10 yards of the fabric and started doing lots of sewing. Only 8 1/2 yards of the fabric came initially so I suggested the Mom’s dress be made out of a solid fabric. She selected all white and I made the scarf and pin to decorate her dress. The girls wanted the ruffle on the bottom of the dress and I added the ruffle around the neck to balance out the hem ruffle. So I finished them within the 2 weeks that I had and she sent me a picture of the group dressed and ready for Mother’s Day 2014. So cute!