Jeff and Tallulah

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of year. It's a pause in the busy rush toward Christmas, a time to reflect on what is most important to us and the things we're thankful for.

Over the decades of course, family celebrations change significantly as we all go through phases of life. Thanksgiving can also be a lonely time for those separated from friends and family. That's the case whether someone is serving in the military far from home, enduring life changes, or for those who may have to work on this holiday that so many others may take for granted.

Whether you are surrounded by a large group of people you are close to, blessed with a small group to celebrate with or even if you're on your own this Thanksgiving, it's important to be thankful for what you have -- or had -- the many blessings in your life.

For example, while I could focus on the sadness of not being able to share Thanksgiving with my wonderful great-grandmother, who lived to be 100 and a half, instead I choose to focus on appreciating the time we did have together. I am thankful that she was a part of the first 41 Thanksgivings of my life. 

I appreciate the memories of being able to spend time with her and enjoy the many wonderful holidays -- and ordinary days -- we were able to spend together. Although she passed away in 2008, all these years later there's not a day that goes by that I don't think of her and the wonderful impact she had on my life.

If you are a person of faith -- and even if you are not -- it's important to be thankful for the good things, past or present. I've heard it said that a thankful heart is a happy heart, and that's definitely true.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you. I hope it is a joyous and blessed holiday for you, whether it's spent with a noisy gathering or in quiet solitude.

Now, it's time for Tallulah's take.

***

Like Daddy said, there are a lot of reasons to be thankful every day. I am thankful that Daddy spoils me so much, for the time he spends with me and that I am part of a loving home.

Not all people or animals get to experience that, and it's definitely not something to take for granted.

I have to admit, for me the best thing about Thanksgiving is the food, and I love it when I am able to share things like turkey, rolls and ham. It makes my mouth water just thinking about it! 

That Thanksgiving feast is so much better than plain ol' dog food, although truth be told, I get to share some meals with Daddy almost every day. That's definitely something I am thankful for. When he makes a sandwich, I am there and I am sure to let him know that it is OK to share with me. If he has pizza, noodles, a burger or any number of items, I am happy to do my part to help make sure Daddy doesn't eat too much (because he shares the food with me).

It might mean I am a little bit bigger because of the food sharing, but that's a sacrifice I am willing to make!

The only thing I always am sure to turn down is when Daddy has a salad. Yuck! Why people eat food intended for rabbits, I'll never understand.

Happy Thanksgiving to all the people, doggies, kitty cats and others out there. I hope you all have a terrific Turkey Day (or enjoy that ham, those tamales, brisket, or whatever else you put on your plate or in your bowl).

Jeff Osborne and Tallulah can be reached at jeff@gatesvillemessenger.com.