Sunday, November 29, 2009
Granddaddy kept the fire stoked from the moment he built it on Thanksgiving Day clear to the time we left. The piano sat freshly tuned against the wall, and I practiced scales and arpeggios. And when I wasn't doing that, I sewed birds with my back to the flames, or I sat in one of the fluffy lazy boy rockers in the kitchen and did the same. Listening to my father's characteristic jokes, watching my mother flutter from the kitchen to the side of the new mothers, I saw how well I fit into this odd bunch. Some of my favorite quirks surfaced--the way we debate proper pronunciations, the way we drop everything to solve number puzzles, the way some of our best work ends up on our plates and delights our palates... My mother told me how, years ago, each family would make Christmas presents for the others. That's how we ended up with coat racks, cobblers' lamps, hurricane stands, macrame and the Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls she stitched for each nuclear family. And here I was, a generation later, doing the same. I am thankful for my family and for the rich life I have because of them.