10 Things I’m Profoundly Grateful For, And Some All-Local Recipes To Make Your Holiday Extra Special

This year was a difficult beginning.  Ethan had been out of work for months,  and no opportunities for a living wage seemed to present themselves.  At times it felt as though darkness had swallowed up the happy life we had, and we were adrift,  every day heading towards an uncertain future.

In the midst of the anxiety, I would try to stop and remember to be thankful for all the good things we did have. Recalling the many blessings we had, both large and small, turned my focus away from feeling sorry for myself, feeling as though life was unfair, and we had been foolish to not have been better prepared for the sudden and unexpected loss of income.

I found that no matter how dark the day felt,  there was always something to be profoundly grateful for,  and the more I practiced being in gratitude,  the less I felt like I wanted or needed,  and the more I felt completely happy with what I already had.  Even small things I ordinarily would have overlooked, like dill and coriander seeds in the garden, became great gifts of renewal and nourishment from the earth itself.

In that time, wonderful gifts and support  also came to us through family, friends and the community, that sustained us through this difficult time and allowed our farming to become more serious and productive, and for Ethan to make a career change that has ultimately fit our farming and family life much better than his last job.   Our life is so different a mere six months later!

In honor of Thanksgiving,  I’m sharing a list of things of 10 things I feel so grateful for, although there are so many things large and small to inspire gratitude:

1. For the sun,  whose powerful light moves the winds and currents,  brings us rain, animates all living things, and illuminates my every breath,  thought,  word and action…

2. For the earth, which has been such a beautiful and perfect place for not only me to live for my entire lifetime since before my birth,  but also for the lifetimes of all my ancestors,  human and beyond…

3. For this day,  and all the days I have been given to be alive here,  and the opportunity of each new day…

4. For my strong and healthy children,  growing up towards their own destiny…

5. For my husband,  whose companionship lights my life,  and whose hard work sustains us…

6. For our extended family,  who all live close by and whose helpful influence in our lives is often the only way I am able to find time to write here…

7. For all the plants and animals we get to share our daily lives with,  whose sacrifices nourish us and keep us strong and healthy…

8. For the good health I’ve been blessed with this year that has enabled me to take over farming,  children, and homeschooling while Ethan is away working…

9. For all our friends and community who  brighten our lives with their good company…

10. For all our patrons and customers who have believed in our dream of cultivating the earth and living a simple life,  and who have supported our endeavor by enjoying the fruits of our labor….

There’s one more thing I want to add that I am so grateful for… all of you who read my rambling blog posts and recipes and enjoy them!

A big thank you!

At the bottom of the post here I’m sharing a list of local, in- season Thanksgiving recipes.  Happy Thanksgiving!  May your holiday shine with blessings large and small! Please feel free to share what you are most thankful for this season in the comments.

Appetizers:

 

French Radish and Butter Appetizer

 

Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

 

Eggnog

 

Main Course Dishes:

 

 This herb rub for roasted chicken is also excellent on turkey! 

 

This delicious stuffing recipe can be made with all local,  home-grown ingredients.

 

Vegetable Sides:

 

Roselle Cranberry Sauce

 

Radish Salad With Roselle Dressing

 

Creamy Dill And Daikon Salad

 

French-Style Spinach or Beet Greens

 

French-style Carrots

 

Turnips in Bechamel Sauce

 

Lyon-style green beans

Lyon-style Green Beans

 

Ambrosia

 

Sweet Things and Dessert:

 

Stone Pear Tart

 

Stone Pear Tart – Can also be made with apples or regular pears

 

black cherry meringue

Chocolate Meringue With Black Cherry Syrup

 

Pumpkin pie ice pops

Pumpkin Pie Ice Pops

 

For Left-Overs:

This is a favorite for left-over roasted turkey

 

10 Tips for great broth

 

And don’t forget to make broth!

 

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