Why oh why are there Christmas decorations in the stores a full month before Halloween even? I know this point has been belabored over and over so I won’t say much. It just makes the holiday so crass and commercial! I long for the days when I was a kid and Christmas decorations didn’t show up in the stores until the day after Thanskgiving… maybe the week before but certainly never in October! And the Christmas shows on tv were wholesome and taught about the magic of the season, the true reason behind the holiday. You know, the ones like the Peanuts gang holiday special and Frosty the Snowman. They weren’t just half hour or hour long commercials for whatever children’s toy is “in” this year. Ok, stepping off my soap box now.

I was thinking today about holidays spent with my family. I’ve been blessed to have many wonderful holiday memories. One of my favorite Thanksgiving memories was Thanksgiving spent at the beach. Really. It was wonderful! Two or three years ago now my sister and brother-in-law rented a house on the beach on the Oregon coast for the holiday weekend. The sun shone most of the weekend and it was a beautiful late fall weekend with temperatures in the 50s. I had a lovely walk on the beach with Grace, my sister’s family’s wonderful dog. And we had a great time visiting with everyone. We had quite a gathering of family there. And by family I mean those related by blood, by marriage, and those we call family by choice. It was a gathering of all of Tom and Cindra’s kids, myself, and a house full of assorted other eclectic, fun, and wonderful close friends. It was very laid back and relaxed. There was lots of laughter and joy and love in the house that holiday. After a delicious dinner we sat in the living room in front of the fireplace and guests sang and played guitar. We had such a good time! I truly treasure the memory of that Thanksgiving.