Fooled you, didn't I? I'll bet you thought that if I was going to post a Thanksgiving-themed piece of artwork today, I'd choose the iconic Saturday Evening Post cover by Norman Rockwell called "Freedom from Want"-- the one that shows the happy family gathered around the well-appointed dining room table, with the bespectacled grandma holding the Thanksgiving turkey on a platter and the grandpa standing behind her, ready to carve it. But that would be too predictable and uninspired, as much as I love that painting and the touching, quaint, all-American celebration it portrays. Instead, I thought I'd share this Post cover from 1928 by J.C. Leyendecker, an illustration which proves that as far back as the twenties, Thanksgiving was as much about football as it was about turkey! With a houseful of boys, watching football has always been an important ingredient in the Thanksgiving day experience.
I do indeed have a lot to be thankful for today. My husband and I are here at my oldest son's house with his wife and their twin baby daughters. Our #3 son flew in last night. Unfortunately, our #2 son--who was going to make the seven-hour car trip yesterday to join us, too--came down with the flu; so instead of having Thanksgiving turkey with us, he is going to be back home in his apartment alone, spending the holiday in bed. :( Our #4 son is on the night shift at his job down in VA, but will probably be able to catch an early dinner with his aunt and her family before he has to go to work. And our #5 son is out in Chicago with his uncle's family, surrounded by cousins, since it would have been too long a trip to make from where he attends college to come here for the weekend. I guess we're lucky that almost everywhere you go in the U.S., you'll find a Pearl relative--so at least our sons that can't be with us can be with other family members.
I'm sad that I'm going to be missing three of my boys today--and especially sad about the one who's sick in bed; but I'm grateful for any time I get to spend with any of my children, now that they're all grown and have lives of their own. I'm counting my blessings, and they are plentiful.
Here's wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving, surrounded by friends and family...with plenty of stuffing and gravy. And football, of course.