It’s Monday, 11 October – Thanksgiving Day in Canada. The weather is beautiful here in Brooklin, just outside of Oshawa, Ontario, sunny, a few small clouds, almost 20 degrees Celsius. I am here with Carroll and Meredith at Christian’s house. He is our youngest son and the father of our two grandchildren, Cian (3 ½) and Isabella (1 ½). We had Thanksgiving dinner yesterday, with Maryan – Carroll’s sister from Ottawa, Paul, Michelle and their two children. Paul is our nephew, Maryan’s son. They live near Christian. Dinner was a great success.
Christian made his first ever Thanksgiving dinner – prepared and stuffed the turkey and all the classic trimmings: mashed potatoes and turnips, two kinds of dressing, green beans with toasted almond slivers, cranberry sauce and gravy – all using favourite family recipes. The turkey was beautifully cooked, very moist. There were very few leftovers – always a good sign. After dinner, two pumpkin pies made by Maryan. They were served with whipped cream, ice cream … or both. Of course I had some of everything and ate too much, also a Thanksgiving tradition for me.
We have a lot to be thankful for. We live in a wonderful and blessed country. It’s not perfect, but if you have lived or travelled anywhere else in the world, then you know how good it is here. Christian is playing with his two children and the sound of children’s laughter echoes through the house. The children are thriving – lively, happy, learning hourly.
Yesterday Bella was unhappy about something and was crying in my arms. Cian came in, very concerned and patted Bella, then went off and came back with her favourite toy to give to her. That stopped her crying. She hugged the duck tightly and I saw evidence of Cian’s empathy – an indicator of a strong and mature emotional state for a three-year-old. This empathy by Cian for his younger sibling is a very welcome sign of the strong bonding in this home. We have a lot to be thankful for.