Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Thanksgiving and Mac and Cheese

by Julie Coulter Bellon

Last year at Thanksgiving, we traveled down to Arizona so I could be at a booksigning the next day. A friend of ours had graciously lent us her apartment in Mesa for the weekend, and we thought it would be fun to bring the kids and visit the Grand Canyon on our way. We spent Thanksgiving afternoon marveling at the amazing canyon, then went on our way. Our plan was to find a restaurant open for dinner, and celebrate a Thanksgiving that someone else had cooked.

Unfortunately, by the time we got to Mesa, we couldn't find even one restaurant that was open. We drove around for several miles, then finally turned into the trusty 7-11. Mustering up a smile for the kids, we went into the convenience store and chose our Thanksgiving fare from their shelves. Macaroni and cheese with Oreos for dessert. The kids seemed pretty happy with it (the younger ones anyway) and we headed for our borrowed apartment. It was there, in the confines of those four walls, eating cheesy macaroni for our Thanksgiving dinner, that I had one of those perfect moments. We were all laughing and we were all together. I had my children around me, food on the table, a warm place to sleep, and the safety and security of the gospel in our lives. It wasn't the meal we had in front of us, it was the blessings we shared, it was being together, of loving and being loved. It was the perfect moment.

So, today, while I am making the grand Thanksgiving feast, the kids are fondly remembering our mac and cheese Thanksgiving last year. I can just tell it's going to be one of those stories that comes up every Thanksgiving. But I can just smile and laugh along with them because that was a moment in time that I cherish and am very grateful for because it brought home the true meaning of Thanksgiving for me. So as we're sitting around our table today, with turkey and all the trimmings, I'm going to be humbly and gratefully counting my blessings and remembering a sweet Thanksgiving of mac and cheese.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!


At 11/27/2006 10:09 AM, Blogger Kerry Blair said...

Last year was fun for me because Julie and I did a book signing together down in Tucson. Not only did I get to meet her incredible family, but we met a woman who was an investigator in the truest sense of the word. She'd wandered into the store looking for "something that might tell her about the Church." For obvious reasons, we gave her a Book of Mormon -- along with a couple of other "lovely parting gifts."

I've corresponded with that sweet, confused, remarkable woman all year. (Probably Julie has too.)Her most recent e-mail arrived this morning. Guess what! We're going to have to go back to Tucson next week. She's finally being baptized!


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