I love Thanksgiving. Growing up, it was a time of close family getting together to celebrate our love for each other. We ate, we laughed, and we were sharing a gratitude for the positive things in our lives. We didn’t have much money, but we always had a turkey. We always had homemade pies. And most of all, we had each other.


After I moved to Los Angeles, some years I was lucky enough to be able to go home for this holiday. But over the years, a new and other kind of Thanksgiving started to emerge. Many of my friends here didn’t have family, or couldn’t get back to them. So, little by little, we started creating our own family and celebrating together. I made the turkey, dressing, potatoes and biscuits. Everyone else pitched in side dishes, relishes and deserts. Every year it grew, and every year new people would join us in celebrating friendship. It was, indeed, a new family.


Of course, I would be in constant touch with my family in Kansas City on the day. It was “tradition” to call mom and ask her how to make the gravy. She’d laugh as soon as she picked up the phone. “Is this the yearly gravy call from my daughter?” she would ask. How I wish I could still make that call.


This Thanksgiving, there will be almost thirty “orphans” at our house for Thanksgiving. My family. You all will be here with us, too, in spirit. You are my heart family in every way, and I am grateful for all of you.


Be blessed. Be happy. Be grateful. And give thanks.