The Macy's Turkey
The Macy’s Turkey

Today in the United States we give thanks for God’s bounty and our religious freedom. It’s the heaviest travel weekend of the year, much of it impacted by weather. From New York City comes a parade so famous some people shorthand it to the “Macy’s Day” Parade, leaving Thankgiving out of the name altogether. On Facebook, some have been recording their gratitude or thankfulness for the whole month of November, while others have boycotted either to avoid hurting people’s feelings by naming all the awesome in their lives or because life is just too hard right now.

And for preachers, the long weekend may look good on paper, but in fact there is still a Sunday at the end of it, and that Sunday is Advent 1. If you’re in the Revised Common Lectionary, it’s that cheerful apocalypse warning that when two women make stuffing together, one will be taken and the other left behind, while in the Narrative Lectionary, you’ll find Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego nobly eschewing the banquets of Babylon in favor of vegetables. I’ll bet you found no marshmallows on *their* sweet potatoes.

But all that can wait for tomorrow. Could someone pass the gravy?

Modern Family and Norman Rockwell, together.
Modern Family and Norman Rockwell, together.

For today, let’s share here our thanks and our disappointments, our travel plans and our weather stories, our favorite recipes and our culinary disasters. Non-U.S. gals and pals, we are thankful for you and hope you will forgive for having an open thread on our National Festival of Pie-Eating and join in the festivities. Be sure to say hello if you stop by, whether your day is more Norman Rockwell or Modern Family.

I give thanks for all of you, for the community of the RevGals far too large to gather around a physical table, but encircling the cyber-table daily. Whatever your day holds, may you find blessing in it.


(Ask the Matriarch will return next Thursday.)

37 thoughts on “RevGals Thanksgiving Reckless Potluck

  1. Good morning. We’re headed to New York City via train this morning. My children are far-flung and our little guy is seeing his dad, so our goal is lunch in the restaurant where my oldest is working today. #thoughtfulspouse #displacedmama
    I’ll miss cooking and eating a favorite vegetable dish passed down from my late Swedish mother-in-law, but there’s some satisfaction in knowing that my grown-up kids fix it wherever they go. It’s mashed rutabagas and potatoes, with a name unspellable in English. I did make a pumpkin pie for kathrynzj’s church’s Community Dinner, so I am not a complete Thanksgiving fail.


    1. Oh Martha, a Thanksgiving fail? I have been in a similar place, needing to be adaptive to how I celebrate Thanksgiving with thanks. Sounds like you have found a festive enough way to celebrate, all things considered. Enjoy the train ride, NYC, your lovely spouse, and seeing your oldest offspring. I do so understand missing the cooking….


  2. Dinner with one of our daughters, our son-in-law, and our grandkids today.

    Tomorrow, the same group is driving to Iowa for a wedding – mine and Mary’s! We had a holy union in 1999, but we’re making it legal.

    We’re staying overnight – I got two 2-room suites: one for our daughter & son-in-law and their 10 year old son, and one for the two of us and our 18 year old granddaughter (what 18 year old girl wants to sleep in a room with her 10 year old half-brother?)

    The wedding is Saturday. If, for some reason, you want to stop by, message me for details.


  3. Thanksgiving with kids and in-laws after a bit of a drive today — happily, my husband’s side of the family is a good deal less tumultuous and acerbic than mine. I’m between churches, so I’m using part of that drive to ponder my first sermon for City Small Church. Something about “Greetings!” Perhaps we are all both favored and perplexed ones?

    Happy Thanksgiving, Gals and Pals!


  4. Cooking this a.m. while my spouse stripes a parking lot (it was ever thus) and then we are going to our son’s girlfriend’s family for Thanksgiving. Grateful for spouse being well enough to do so, and healing in relationship with son to make the latter possible. What a difference a few years makes…


  5. This is our first Thanksgiving home in three years. The last two we have been on a cruise ship for much-needed vacations, but also to escape having both sides of the families at our house. Yes I am that cowardly – and I had to pay off a bet with one of the cruises… Anyway – lots of cooking done yesterday so today is relaxing while I wait for some to arrive and others to wake. Happy Thanksgiving to you all!


  6. My daughter and her fiance arrive late last night after a very tense drive from Chicago through snow and bad traffic. But I had fresh made pie and hot chocolate waiting for them, so that helped. Watching the parade, a fire in the fireplace, a cup of my own pumpkin spice coffee. Food prep is done. Soon we’ll go cut down a Christmas tree (we are in Michigan after all, Christmas tree land….). After we return we’ll put the turkey in and maybe go out bowling (fiance’s family tradition on Thanksgiving day) while the turkey roasts. Later, after dinner, maybe we will decorate the tree. Tomorrow night we turn around and celebrate my husband’s birthday, which is Dec. 3. Squeezing everything in while the whole family is here. (Doesn’t happen every year….)


  7. My spouse is a social worker who runs several programs for people in need, and neither of us have families anywhere close, so we usually meet this festal day with a combination of wistfulness, work-related exhaustion, and frustration. This will be our sixth or seventh year attending a free community meal at her workplace, and it’s a warm, wonderful event (catered by an excellent local restaurant, which donates their labor and everything for the feast except desserts). Unfortunately, this means we go home to a quiet house with no leftovers… but we’ll make up for that with an afternoon of firewood splitting, other farm chores, and chicken stew with dumplings. The stew is all made from things grown here on our farm, so there’s a definite thanksgiving element to it, and the dumplings give me the chance to feel like I did at least a modicum of holiday baking. Oh, and after dinner– I think we’re going to round up a neighbor or two and some other waifs and strays for popcorn and board games. Fun!


  8. Going over the freeway to my SILs for dinner bearing pie made made by my husband. Will see the SIL who had a stroke, the BIL dealing with newly diagnosed cancer, and the one healing with the mystery leg infection (fine now TBTG). Will also see the sweet baby grand-nieces and the nephew and soon-to-be niece by love that I will marry in April. A day full of lots of talk and feelings I’d be guessing. Feeling kind of misty already, nostalgic gratitude for some things that were and are no more balanced with thanks for all the gifts that are in my now.


  9. Last year was my first year as an integral part of church leadership during Advent–heading up all the kid-involved stuff–and we had that blessed extra week between Thanksgiving and Advent. This year is my first year to be integrally involved–heading up kid-stuff, prepping prayer stations, procuring candle lighters, posting Advent meditations–with the OMG, its the-shortest-week-of-the-year-before-the busiest-time-of-the-year scenario! I am utterly grateful to my parents for taking my kids for 3 days.

    Today we drive 5+ hours to my parents home (I have pumpkin pies and rolls); however, my spouse just took a cold pill and went back to bed “until it kicks in.”

    Truly, I am grateful for this church that has given me the opportunity to work and to thrive and to wonder in an active way about call and vocation. I am grateful for my parents who are utterly flexible as they await us today. I am grateful I will be seeing my children in a few hours.

    And I am grateful for you.



  10. The turkey is roasting away in a bath of hard cider and onions, the NY Times mashed potato casserole with sour cream and chives is ready to go in after the turkey comes out, all is ready for the stuffing and gravy… there’s more, too.

    But what i am grateful for is the presence of my children, on the couch gamely trying to become Doctor Who afficionados in one afternoon (seems to be working); my beloved Sherry alternately reading and snoozing while I putter in the kitchen, And of course the tickets for “Catching Fire” later tonight, and this calm and lovely homey day before tomorrow

    Tomorrow we drive five hours to my hometown for my dad’s memorial service this weekend. There we will see my brother and family, as well as cousins and second cousins and neighbors who all meant so much to my dad, especially in his later years.

    I am missing Advent 1 in my congregation. It’s a strange thing, but I’m glad to be taking the whole weekend for travel and family time.

    A blessed day to you all.


  11. My dear friends! What joy to read about all your traditional and less so gatherings and travels and feasting!
    I confess it’s all a bit of a mystery to me – something I have been only vaguely aware of for many years. And more so with the advent of non-stop US sitcoms (though I suspect that Joey with his head in a turkey isn’t really anyone’s tradition!!!)
    The idea of an extra family gathering only four weeks before Christmas sound really, really scary! But, I would also love an excuse to gather the kids in.
    Martha, I get that whole family scattered, thing. And will have similar thoughts on Christmas this year as two of my boys (23, 29!) are at their Dad. And the other one is in Canada and will be working Christmas. But…. we think that maybe, just maybe, Al’s three may join us…. Prayers ascend for that!

    So – wherever you spent it; with whoever; I pray that you were all filled with love and thanks and joy and hope… And that Advent 1 will be filled with the hope of the One to come!
    Blessings all


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