Kathleen Delaney, author of Murder Half-Baked and other books, retired from real estate to pursue writing full time. She’s here today with her thoughts on what Thanksgiving means to her and what she’s thankful for.
Murder by Syllabub, fifth in the Ellen McKenzie series, is available in bookstores now. PureBred Dead, the first in a new series, will be out in the spring of 2015.
It’s that time again. The holiday are upon us. We know because Wal Mart is decked out in green and red, has been since before Halloween. The grocery ads are already advertising bargain prices on turkeys and telling us to stock up on cans of green beans, cranberries and pumpkin pie mix as well as gift wrap and cellophane tape. We will no sooner have made the leftover turkey into soup or white bean chili then it will be time to prepare for the next round of festivities. Christmas, Hanukah, Kwanza, no matter which one you celebrate they all have one thing in common. Family. And that is the first thing on my list of things I’m thankful for. Family.
I have five grown children and we are scattered across the US so holidays are not as they were a number of years ago. Time was we had 30-40 people for Thanksgiving. My children and latertheir partners, the first of the grandchildren, grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins, and any friends who were at loose ends, they all came along with their dogs and covered dishes and we feasted, laughed, argues politics, chased children, and did dishes. It was great.
The grandparents and many of the aunts and uncles are gone now. The dogs are new ones and not used to so many people. We have split into smaller groups as our families have extended and getting together requires plane tickets. However two of my children and their families will be with me this year and we’ll keep the phone lines hot that day as we share some of the fun with the others, even if we can’t share the pumpkin pie.
We’re still a tight family, and for that, I give thanks.
I’m grateful for my dogs and for my old cat. Sounds pretty silly, but every one of them needed a home, a safe place to sleep (which seems to be my bed) enough to eat and someone they could trust. I am grateful I have been able to provide that for them.
I’m grateful for books. My house overflows with them. There have been some exceptionally good ones out this year, and because of the library system and my local bookstore, I have been privileged to read many. I’m also grateful I have five books of my own in print, or available electronically. We live in a great age when we can keep our books alive for new people to read and hopefully enjoy. I’m grateful so many of them are in libraries, and look forward to Purebred Dead, the first in a new series’ to be released this summe, and to seeing it in libraries and on bookshop shelves. That is a thrill it is not possible to describe. I’m grateful for a wonderful agent, a great publisher and editor, and the many friends I’ve made through Sisters in Crime and other writing adventures.
I believe the first Thanksgiving was held because the pilgrims were giving thanks they had enough food to get them through the winter without starving to death. A good thing to be thankful for. Unfortunately, more than many people can give thanks for all over the world, in this country and in my very own town. I hope and pray someday everyone can truthfully say they are thankful they are no longer hungry, thirsty, or have no place to live. It’s not a lot to wish for. Or, maybe it is.
It’s time to start making the grocery list, and making sure the budget includes a few extra items for those that won’t be at my table, and then it will be time to start getting ready for Santa. I love to cook, and it’s a darn good thing. I think we’ll start with Christmas cookies, right after Thanksgiving is over, and as soon as the tree is up. My grandkids are really good at decorating them, trees and cookies. Rudolph always gets an extra special red nose and Frosty’s hat comes in many colors.
In the meantime, I’m going to try to get the next chapter of the next book done. Time is going to get a little crowded pretty soon now.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.