A Thanksgiving celebration of work and family

Family after dumpster work 8056_StaatsWe’ve just returned from a quick Thanksgiving trip south – for warmer climes and family.  After large dinners and feasts, this group gathered together at my parents’ house.  Following both my mother’s and father’s deaths in the past year, their house of 57 years has many things in need of clearing and cleaning.  This group of people who I am so happy to claim as family all chipped in with sweat, work and lots of laughter to fill a huge dumpster in a short period of time. Decisions were made on what to save, what to donate, and what to pitch.  The pool table in the basement required the strength of the younger generation, along with the assistance of a chain saw and many recommendations (some heeded and some not) to find its way up the stairs to the dumpster.  What could have been a week-long project filled with angst and tears, became a joyful celebration of the family that my parents were so proud of.

Petals of fall

I’m fortunate to live in close proximity to the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory in Saint Paul.  No matter what season or what the weather’s like outside, there’s always a view of color and warmth at the conservatory.  And as we’re quickly approaching Thanksgiving, the sunken garden is filled with the warm colors of fall – yellows, oranges, and all the shades in between.  As I was photographing here this morning I was reminded of so many things I have to be thankful for:  my eyes, my health, my friends and family, a warm house, plentiful food, and the joy of living a wonderful life.  I hope your week of Thanksgiving gives you pause to appreciate all that you have and the world around you.

Harvest and Thanksgiving

Yesterday I was south of the Cities near the town of New Trier, Minnesota.  This is a beautiful farming area with an abundance of rolling hills.  The harvest has been late this year, hampered by rain and cooler temperatures.  But on this unusually sunny and warm day there was much activity in the fields — something for which many farmers were quite thankful.  As we head into the week of Thanksgiving I’m focusing on the bounty of my life and all those things I have to be thankful for:   a roof over my head and a job, plenty of good food to eat, good health, good friends, good family, and a wonderful freedom we enjoy in this country.  May we all realize the good fortune we have.