A November to Remember

At the heart of November is Thanksgiving, and I have so much to be thankful for, the whole year through: Good health, a wonderful loving family, caring friends and neighbors, the two best dogs in the world, our new home—in Kentucky!—, food on the table, a job that I’m passionate about doing, and opportunities to learn and grow, both as a writer and as a human-being.

But this November has brought me even more to be grateful for: My first novel, Something to Sing About, was named one of the top ten best religious/ spiritual books for youth in the November 15th issue of Booklist! Additionally, Sing has been nominated for a 2010 Children’s Crown Award!

Had she lived, my writer-grandmother would’ve been especially pleased and proud! And I miss her. Still.

So, I got out my some of her things. Among them, was the opal ring that my grandmother wore daily, a ring I hadn’t dared to touch since the day she gave it to me, knowing she was dying, more eight years ago. For the first time, I tried the ring on. My hand suddenly looked so much like my grandmother’s that if I squinted a little bit, I could see her hand instead of my own.


It comforted me. So, I wore the ring. I wore it on Thanksgiving, and felt that in some small way, Grandmother was there at the table, counting our blessings with us.

Why did I allow eight years to pass without touching that ring ? All I can say is that for years, the ring felt like a–painful–reminder that Grandmother was gone, and now, somehow, it feels more like a reminder that she isn’t.

I was glad to bring a little piece of Grandmother to our Thanksgiving table. So glad that afterward, I wanted to find a way to bring my grandmother and everyone in our family to our dinner table every night.

I came up with a plan. I told my husband what I wanted and why I wanted it. He didn’t laugh. God bless him, he went right out and bought the necessary materials, came home and began putting everything together. There are now more than thirty people hanging around our kitchen table nightly, right along with us.

And I am thankful for each and every one of them. So thankful.

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