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  • Thanksgiving Memories

    We're having a quiet Thanksgiving at home, quite the contrast to years past. Feeling nostalgic with Ben, Emma, and Kate here together for the first time in months, I started going through old photos of past Thanksgivings.

    A few things I noticed during our visual time travel:

    • Over the last 20 years, we've had Thanksgiving dinner in at least 7 different cities in four states.

    • Only two years (2001 and 2014) are not represented in this album. We were just moving into our home in Lorton in November 2001 and in 2014 we had just the girls here for a low-key Thanksgiving.

    • After 2003, we didn't have Thanksgiving at home until 2013. Since then, we've been at home for three of the last four years.

    • The last Thanksgiving all six McFarland/Cook first cousins were together was in 2012. They've only all been together a handful of times since. The last time all of the Cook/Ghirardi cousins were together was at my dad's funeral in 2007.

    Going back through these photos was fun experience. Some years were easier than others — no surprise given that December is the month of birthdays. At times we were celebrating new opportunities; at others we were mourning those we had lost.

    But all it takes is one quick look, and you can see why I give thanks every day for the life we have together.