Well, I have the time to update this again. We just had family visit for almost three weeks - we had all four of our nieces here - ages 8, 6, 2 and 10 Zach. So it was crazy, but we had a really good time of fellowship and made some great memories. Originally, they were going to try to come out and spend Thanksgiving with us, but that didn't work out. Honestly, Thanksgiving came a bit early for me this year. I am thankful for family that we are so close to - even though we are far away. I am thankful that they were willing to go through the stress and financial strain of buying plane tickets and flying four kids all the way out here. I am thankful that my sister-in-law just happens to have become one of my closest friends. And I am thankful that we have many more times like this to look forward to in the future.

After they left, I went to Wal-mart to get some things, and I was greeted at the entrance with a tall Christmas tree. I couldn't believe they were already decorated for Christmas, but they were. Now I love Christmas, but it is disappointing to me that people skip over Thanksgiving so flippantly. Christmas has become all about getting and giving gifts, but Thanksgiving is a day to take a moment to take a deep breath and just be grateful for what is. Not what will be, what was, or what we desire...just what is. How often do we get the chance to do that anymore? A holiday that is not about giving or receiving anything - just being thankful. Of course, stores can't profit off of that, so I understand skipping to Christmas, but I hope that everyone doesn't get so caught up in the Christmas rush that they miss Thanksgiving. So here are some quotes that have helped me get into the Thanksgiving mindset:

If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, "thank you," that would suffice.

Thanksgiving Day is a jewel, to set in the hearts of honest men; but be careful that you do not take the day, and leave out the gratitude.

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.

Thanksgiving, after all, is a word of action.

He who thanks but with the lips
Thanks but in part;
The full, the true Thanksgiving
Comes from the heart.

For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.

Thou hast given so much to me,
Give one thing more, - a grateful heart;
Not thankful when it pleaseth me,
As if Thy blessings had spare days,
But such a heart whose pulse may be Thy praise.

The unthankful heart... discovers no mercies; but let the thankful heart sweep through the day and, as the magnet finds the iron, so it will find, in every hour, some heavenly blessings!

There is one day that is ours. There is one day when all we Americans who are not self-made go back to the old home to eat saleratus biscuits and marvel how much nearer to the porch the old pump looks than it used to. Thanksgiving Day is the one day that is purely American.

We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.

On Thanksgiving Day we acknowledge our dependence.

God has two dwellings; one in heaven, and the other in a meek and thankful heart.