Back about a week before Thanksgiving, I had the great blessing of being invited to attend my tiny granddaughter Ellie's pre-school Thanksgiving feast. Her father Todd and I arrived at the school shortly before 11:30 AM. We made our way through the hallways to the pre-toddler room where Ellie (17 months old) was busily playing in some sort of a rocking boat toy with 3 other little ones.
When she saw us, she quickly climbed out and gave us her very cute and shy greeting. It's funny - little kids have no clue about partying. She has no idea that today is her holiday party, she's just happy to see her daddy and I in the middle of the day. Not only that, she could care less about the fact that many mothers and staff members have put a lot of work into preparing and arranging an extensive buffet of traditional Thanksgiving dishes.
At some predetermined moment, the director of the facility indicated that we should get in line and pass by the food table. Let me say here - one year olds do not get in any sort of lines. They run toward and scramble up into the arms of a parent at the first notion that the parent is moving in the direction of the exit door. Food is secondary.
So we brought back a full plate of good food for Ellie, and cut it all up carefully into tiny toddler sized pieces.
On the plate was a little bit of this, and a little bit of that, and it all smelled and looked delicious.
Looking around the room at the other toddlers, it was amazing to watch the variations in personality and behavior. Some were oblivious to the fact that a parent was there, some needed to be held the entire hour. A few children ate as if they hadn't eaten for a week, and then there was Ellie who ate all of two tator tots. Only.
Messy plates were put away, and one by one the parents made their exits.
I don't think this Thanksgiving Day feast resembled at all that very first one so many years ago, but for me it was pretty darn special to spend it with Ellie. I sure do love that little girl, and I'm so thankful she has come into our family.