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Thanksgiving is a great holiday.  We all take the time to stop and appreciate the wonderful blessings we have in our lives.  Historically speaking, the nation I live in is blessed like no other nation in the modern history of the world.  We live in such a time of unprecedented wealth that not only do our wealthy citizens enjoy the highest standard of living in the world, but the poorest 10% of the people in our nation have a higher standard of living than the wealthiest 10% in many “civilized” countries according to many economists.

Some folks view Thanksgiving as a day for feasting, some see an opportunity for great bargains at stores, and others see an opportunity for a brief vacation from work.  For me, it has always been about family.  When I was young, we would celebrate Thanksgiving with my first cousins, second cousins, aunts, uncles, and great aunt.  My family has scattered during the ensuing years, but my appreciation of them has not.  The folks with whom I used to celebrate Thanksgiving live in Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina, Arkansas, Kentucky, Kansas, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania (maybe more places that I am not aware of, too).  In spite of that, I have had the opportunity to see many of them throughout the years and reminisce about old times.

I won’t have the chance to see my side of the family at Thanksgiving this year, but I will get to see my wife’s side of the family.  My side of the family gets together at New Year’s, but there’s another blog post in that story.  I hope that as we pause to enjoy a home cooked meal with all the traditional fixings (at least, the traditional ones from my family and my wife’s family), we all appreciate how blessed we are.  I hope you get the chance to pause and appreciate that as well.