Friday, November 23, 2012

Marcy's Travel Blog- A Country Thanksgiving- U.S.A.

The Lawson family clan, and also some "In-laws"  such as myself, once again gathered for the Thanksgiving Holiday! Among this group, gratitude and the fellowship of  family all add up to a fantastic holiday!

The SETTING! The Lawson's have a beautiful home in the country- a perfect setting for outdoor activities with the 60 degree temperatures, a  blue sky, and a sprinkle of white wispy clouds here and there!

The Lawson Country Home
Wooded area
They have a wonderful fishing pond!

Such a beautiful setting!
I've spent many a afternoon on that deck, surrounded by wind chimes,  birds, and sunshine!

The PRE-DINNER MUNCHIES were in abundance!

My daughter-in-law, Mia, provided yummy salami rolls, an assortment of cheeses, dry pepper salami, veggies and dip, hummus, crackers, beef stick, and olives. Her brother Matt and family are from out of state, but thoughtfully provided wonderful wine!

This was a hungry crew! The munchies served as lunch, because dinner was to be at 6:00 p.m.- The cheese and crackers were a BIG hit with the little ones!

The ACTIVITIES this year included mostly outdoor activities, thanks to the wonderful weather!

As we drove onto the property, my son Steven notice a small tree that had toppled with the latest wind storm. So- work before play! He and son Evan cut and cleared the tree.

Once that was done- it was fun time!

So- next was go-cart rides!!  Steven let the little ones think they were driving, though he had full control of not only the gas, but one hand on the steering wheel. The four children stood in line for their turn!

Granddaughter Payton loves riding with her daddy!

One of the nieces out for a ride with Uncle Steven!
My 9 year old grandson Evan felt proud to be able to give his cousin a ride!

Then came TARGET PRACTICE! Well, for some it was. For me it was a shooting lesson- How to fire a hand gun -101!

Son Steven's teaching me here how to handle and fire a hand gun safely!

With the wind moving the target around, I wasn't sure I'd hit it at all!
I got three out of three. Guess that's not too bad. Would've liked to get all three in the "Air Wick" circle, though.

Steven's dad, Gene, came by to spend a bit of time.

                      Of course, there was the foot ball game, which the Detroit Lion's lost.

                 Bill, the Lawson family Patriarch, relaxing after watching Detroit's brutal lose!

                          Two Patriarchs! Gene Wedekemper (left) and Bill Lawson (right)

What is a family holiday without the laughter and energy of THE CHILDREN?

    Left to right: Meghan, Evan, Mackenzie, and Payton (who loves to ham it up for the camera!)

Putting together a puzzle of the United States (Grandson Evan and his cousin Meghan)

Mackenzie loves to play papa Bill's harmonica! Does a good job of it too!

The table was set.
Our hostess (Willy) baked a beautiful turkey!

The family was gathered! (Starting from the left lower) Our hostess Willy Lawson, grandson Evan, myself, granddaughter Payton, daughter-in-law Mia, our host Bill Lawson, Mia's brother Matt, his daughters Mackenzie and Meghan, and his wife Melissa. (My son Steven's taking the picture)

Besides turkey, there was: whipped potatoes, gravy, sweet potato/ pecan dish, green bean casserole, two kinds of cranberry dishes, cresant rolls, and stuffing!

The moments of GRATITUDE!
As we did last year, we went around the table to name at least one thing we were grateful for.

For me, it was the hospitality and kindness shown me by the whole family. I was also grateful I never went hungry and always had a roof over my head!

All mentioned family. Steven added his gratitude for being in this great country. He's an airline captain, and travels to different countries. He says the exposure to the way others live has given him a true appreciation for this country, and the freedom to choose what you want to do with your life! (I say amen to that!)

The POST-MEAL activities!

Mia and son Evan shooting skeet!
Clean up! It's a tough job, but someone has to do it! (This is Otto!)

Steven has a gift of making people laugh!......
He certainly tickles me!

The DESSERTS! Bravo, Mia! Wonderful desserts! Dips, pies, and fudge!

As we were preparing to leave, Bills sister and brother-in-law arrived. Bill's sister Katie is a true artist. To thank her brother Bill for all his support of her art work over the years- she made him a beautiful quilt!

Katie (left) and Willy stood on step-stools to show the quilt. Beautiful!
A closer look! This beautiful piece will be a wall hanging!

Katie and Phil Kloske. Such lovely folks!

It was time to depart. As we were packing the car to leave, a light drizzle began to fall! How fortunate we were to have such wonderful weather for our indoor/outdoor holiday! With "goodbye's" all around we headed home. Payton is three years old and played hard with her brother and cousins all day. She was asleep in the car before we got to the end of the driveway!

I expected Evan and Steven to fall asleep shortly after arriving home, but....... there was a game with their name on it!  (CALL of DUTY_ BLACK OPS II)

So! Thanksgiving, country style, in the good ol U.S. of A. was wonderful! I think one of the highlights of my day was the serious nature the children took when talking about what they were grateful for. You could tell they were actually thinking about it.

Of course, the camaraderie, the laughter, the wonderful hospitality, the great weather, and fantastic food all added up to a wonderful day- a day to add to the "good memory" list!

For me, I know that many of the things I have in my life are not to be taken for granted. And my gratitude list just keeps getting longer and longer!!

Truly, my cup of good fortune runneth over!!

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