On Ancestors and the Future
It is the Monday eve of Thanksgiving. I am digging through a recipe box searching for my Mom’s pecan pie recipe. It calls for both bourbon and maple syrup, so you can see why it’s a good one.
I sat down to write a piece about shopping local and using our powerful dollars wisely this holiday season, for they truly do count. And as much as I believe in supporting our small businesses, the thing that brings me to tears is this recipe box. It used to be my grandfather’s Guernsey cow record box, back on the dairy farm in Connecticut. I found an old recipe clipped from our hometown newspaper, faded to yellow. It was for my grandmother’s holiday sweet rolls, which had been so popular that it made it into the paper.
Frank Calhoun was a Republican, and a state legislator. Polly was a staunch Democrat. They were both pillars in the church and the community. Thanksgiving was a huge event with a minimum of 65 guests at the table. Everyone who needed a place to go came to the Calhouns’. It was a lovely and important tradition, one which I sorely miss.
I have been thinking a lot about whose shoulders we have stood upon to get where we are today. I so wish I could sit down at their old farm table by the wood stove and get some advice and perspective about how we move forward in this world. I imagine Polly and Frank would say keep working hard. Keep taking care of the land. Keep an open place at the table for anyone who needs it. Keep loving a Republican. Keep loving a Democrat. Keep baking sweet rolls and share them with everyone you know. Oh, and spend your hard-earned dollars wisely. Happy Thanksgiving to all.