THE FROG POND - Gathering Together


Suzanne Mazer Stewart writes from her country home in Marion County about life's simple pleasures or frustrations.

By Suzanne Mazer Stewart

At this time of year, families get together, fine meals are prepared, and everyone is supposed to remember to count their blessings. Gather in the good, I once heard a preacher call it. Well, I suppose I've got just as much, or more so, to be thankful for as anybody else. While you think a moment on the good you can gather up, let me tell you about mine.

First of all, I suppose I should start with my family. Yes, the baby still doesn't let me get enough sleep, and the three year old can't go a day without at least a half dozen temper tantrums. The oldest son delights in tormenting his sisters, and the oldest daughter, well, let's just say she'll make a fine drill sergeant some day the way she orders the others around. My house hasn't been completely clean in I can't remember how long. There's a mountain of laundry in my bathroom that could serve as training ground for the guys who try to climb Everest. My husband is either working too much, and I never get to see him, or he's around underfoot getting in my way and on my nerves. Yet, they are mine, and my life would not be the same without them. They are the source of some of my greatest joys, and my proudest moments.

Next, I'd like to say a little thank you for having the good grace to live in such a wonderful place. When others worry about crime and pollution, we go to bed with the doors unlocked and the kids can play in the creek until the water gets too cold. While some folks don't even know their neighbors' names, you could trust to leave your house key with the folks we know, for "just in case." There is the beauty of Nature all around. Why, stepping out the front door can be like stepping into a great cathedral, so great is the presence of the Almighty. Who cares if it takes a half an hour to get to the grocery store, or an hour to the mall? I've got good neighbors, good friends and good scenery!

Lastly, and I think this year more than ever, we need to be reminded of what a great and glorious country we call Home. No where else on Earth can you enjoy the freedoms we Americans do. Those freedoms allow others to commit unspeakable acts against us, but those very same freedoms also allow us to live relatively free from fear and safe in the knowledge that our way of life will prevail.

So, as I look at the pink and purple "punk" Pilgrims my kids have constructed, ("we wanted them to be different") and I prepare to play "Pin the Tail on the Turkey" one more time, or watch the parades and football games as I ready our dinner, I think I'll get down that big basket from the shelf. I think I'll put it smack in the middle of the table this year. I need something that big to gather up all my good!

May the Lord bless you with love and grace,
May He look upon you with smiling face.
May you enjoy peace, love and laughter,
On Thanksgiving Day, and each day thereafter.

You may contact Suzanne by e-mail

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