Giving Thanks…

The house, quiet. Early morning. A November sky feels particularly dark. Heavy gray clouds move gracefully over the hills. Parting ever so slightly to show a glimpse of the new day.

The washing machine groaned. Bed sheets piled on the laundry room floor. The dishwasher seemed to constantly run. Dishes waiting in queue. Traces of Thanksgiving dot the kitchen counter. My mother’s amber glass bowl used only for the holidays is filled with chocolates. A heart shaped Franciscan ware dish rests on the granite countertop. The Desert Rose pattern once displayed on my parent’s dining room table for many wonderful Thanksgivings.

Our new family room addition was now sans our family. A longcase clock positioned in the corner of the room breaks the stillness. Melodically it ticks and tocks.  Just a day or two before the room was filled with our small immediate family. The Macy ‘s Thanksgiving Day Parade was on the television as were many football games over the course of the day. The background noise nostalgically resembled so many other Thanksgivings. The years have quickly rolled into one. Laughter, and family banter now filled our Vermont inspired room. My adult married daughter and son energetically chatted back and forth. They have been dear friends, always. Our lovely daughter-in-law and amazing son-in-law make our family complete. The little house on the hill was full as was my heart.

Our granddaughter in full and fabulous toddler mode happily ran from room to room. A game she created involved each family member. Quickly she would run on her forefoot. Belle’s golden- brown hair bounced in response. Another family runner in the making. Undeniably she is her mother’s daughter. Our daughter Emily still runs on her forefoot as she powers through each run.  My husband Jon and I mutually acknowledged the similarity as we luxuriated in revisiting our toddler daughter from years ago. Time had stood still.

An aunt. An uncle. Hugs and handholding. Joyful. Each member happy to take their turn touring our home with Belle’s small hand in theirs. All paths led to our bedroom where a ballerina music box gifted to me from my sister has a home on my bureau.  Since Belle was born, I have wound up the “ladies” to dance for her. Delighting her then and now. Each one of us danced to the classical tune being played.

The day was beautiful. Dinner morphed into desert. Jon was in the kitchen whipping heavy cream. The topping for his chocolate mousse. Belle ran to him. His open arms welcomed his granddaughter. Jon swiftly lifted her and immediately her precious arms were wrapped around his neck. Belle’s muscles tensed as her hug intensified while she rested her head on her grandfather’s shoulder. Jon’s eyes closed. His love permeated the room. The moment was exquisite. Giving thanks…

        “Something magical happens when parents turn into grandparents.” –Unknown

Author: Elizabeth Ricketson

A graduate of Providence College with a BA in English, Elizabeth Ricketson has always had a love of literature and the fine arts. Elizabeth’s essays focus on life experiences and life in Vermont.

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