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We're thankful to you all.Posted Wednesday, November 21, 2012, at 4:09 PM
Where: American Legion club, Highway Blvd just north of People for Pets in Spencer.
First, a plug for the American Legion: We are so Thankful to the Spencer post of the American Legion for the use of their beautiful facility at a reasonable cost, the donation of some party goods, and their general graciousness and belief in our passion to action. We hope everyone will support them as they provide a holiday celebration meal to Veterans and their spouses on December 15.
When: 2:00 pm on Thanksgiving Day we will carve the turkey.
Who: You! Anyone who wants to come, especially if you have no where else to be!
Why: A more complicated question. The thought of giving thanks and raising a glass with friends and strangers/new friends has nagged on Edward and me for a long time, but we started thinking this just was not our year. Then we had a generous donation of ham and turkey, and we decided this was meant to be.
Maybe you heard it on the radio -- it's a revolution against the loneliness and isolation that can come with the holidays. We seek to build community in ways that are peaceful, joyful, interdependent, and fun. It's just us and our kids, another family and their kids, an assortment of single guys of various ages and stages, a widow with her boys, I hope (that's my cousin), and possibly some other cousins and friends we know.
In the case of a miracle, my first mom will join us, too.
Loneliness is not limited to those who live alone. I have a loving husband and three wonderful children. I am incredibly grateful for them. Yet I witness the arrival of out of town relatives at Terrazzo Coffeehouse Tuesday. The big smiles and big hugs, the reassurance that the loved one who's moved far away has come home for a while. I don't have that anymore. My parents and grandparents are all gone, and my remaining aunt, uncle and cousins are emotionally and geographically distant. I don't know if I will see my first cousins from my adoptive family (the one I was raised in) ever again. It is what it is, but I do feel a bit of grief that I don't have that extended family that wants or misses me.
So why not make friends from strangers, and family from friends?
We have lots of food, games, and room. If you want to be with us, you are welcome in peace, joy and thankfulness.
This is not just some idea we cooked up, but has become something much bigger than us. We were inspired by Francis Chan, and by the Loeckens, the family on Passion 2 Action, to create this day. I hope it's as memorable and great as the lead-up would indicate.
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Amy Hillgren Peterson has been married to Ed since 1992 and is the mother of three children: two teenagers and an elementary student. Her fiction, drama and essays have won several awards and have appeared in local and national publications. She is the published author of a memoir and a novel, and is currently at work on more theatrical works and a short story collection. She blogs about faith; relationships; simple, sustainable living; mental health; and creative writing. She also blogs about new and exciting happenings at the Curiel Reynolds School of Visual Arts in Spencer.
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