ThanksgivingTomorrow is Thanksgiving Day, a day which was first declared a federal holiday in 1863 in the midst of the War Between the States by President Abraham Lincoln.  It pains me to think that 150 years later, it is more often referred to as the day before black Friday.

The year has been a challenging one, personally and professionally.  As I reflect on it, I realize with certainty that I have only thanks to give to my Creator and my family, friends and associates that he has surrounded me with.  Much like those 53 Pilgrims and 90 Native Americans who gathered together on a cold November day in 1621, the blessings we are endowed with bring far more value to our lives than our challenges could ever detract from them.

I just told my father that as a young boy growing up in the Berkshire Hills of Western Massachusetts, I believe Thanksgiving Day was my favorite holiday .  That is saying a lot because I really enjoyed Halloween and Christmas as well.  We would celebrate every Thanksgiving with my Babcie [grandmother], myAvalon Aunt Sadie and her family and Auntie [pronounced ONT-ee {Eleanor}] and her family.  I favored it most at Auntie’s house in Housatonic.  Auntie had a long dining room table that accommodated the adults while the children — until we became semi-adults as teenagers — sat nearby at card tables.  The aromas were incredible!  I’ve been addicted to stuffing of any kind since.  The Thanksgiving scene in Barry Levison’s 1991 classic film “Avalon” is so reminiscent of my youthful Thanksgivings that I watch the film frequently.

Wilber L. Cross was the seventy-first governor of the State of Connecticut.  This morning, I came across his 1936 Thanksgiving proclamation.  I post it here with the hope that you share Thanksgiving ideas and wishes similar to his with your friends and family, particularly the children.  Happy Thanksgiving.  Life is Grand and we are grateful for it.

Wilber L. Cross




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  1. It seems to me that at Thanksgiving there is a chance to remember the big picture as it relates to life. I enjoyed listening to the recording by the governor. Part of the big picture is that our history has affected us. We don’t live an isolated life. We are part of an on going story. I’m going to look for the movie Avalon now. I’ve never seen it. James 1:17: “every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.”

    1. I agree, Randy. Each of us should pause today and reflect upon our individual histories and how each of us has impacted those in our immediate circle and ultimately in the world around us. A good day to watch “It’s a Wonderful Life.” I know you will enjoy “Avalon.” Happy Thanksgiving.