Portland doesn’t usually grace us with blue skies in November but this Fall of 2013 has been atypical and I like it. The sky has been blue for about a week and these crisp mornings bring me back to fall in Alaska when the lingonberries are in a burgundy freeze. I look out my in the back ‘yard’ with the thick dense trees dormant until next spring.
Every other year I am well into the planning for the turkey and fixings by this time. Every other year we travel to Gig Harbor to celebrate with friends and homestead neighbors the Mack family would gather with often for holidays. This is the the time of year when I pause and realize how fleeting time is and how important these holidays are for our family. I have many holiday memories as a kid in Soldotna, they include mostly happy and some sad memories. I choose to recall the fond memories of laughter at a table covered in our best table cloth and special crystal bowl we used only for the lingonberry sauce every single holiday. I hold dear the holidays surrounded by family and friends and lingering at the dinner table. And I hash over the not so fond memories and wonder how my Dad must have struggled inside to not come home to his family on Thanksgiving that one year. And my Mom who made such a beautiful meal and worked so hard to make memories for us must have cried inside over the circumstance. I know we all wanted to cry but we tried to be strong.
I am so thankful for my family and every holiday we spend together. In this world of iPhones and iPads and soccer year round there are few too many times spent baking and preparing together and laughing and playing games with friends and family. These times of memory making are what I look forward to every holiday season and I count my blessings and my beautiful family + 1 that I get to spend these days with. Tomorrow we will bake Grandma’s rolls, pumpkin pie, some Danish treats and Alaskan salmon dip. We will proudly bring our treats to ‘the Gig’ and enjoy sharing our gifts and the wonderful meals our friends prepare. We will walk by the harbor all bundled up and ferry into Seattle on Friday to show our Danish girl just how crazy Americans can be on Black Friday. We’ll take photos of the Northwest’s beauty and the beauty of our families. We’ll reminisce about homestead days and we’ll laugh about what happened last week. We’ll make memories and enjoy the moments.