Thanksgiving Thoughts

By Jedediah Bila –

I was recently asked by a media colleague to share my single favorite Thanksgiving memory.

I immediately recalled the image of my grandmother chasing my grandfather around the kitchen table with a turkey baster that one year in high school. Hey, when I told you I had a crazy Italian family, I meant it.

In my sophomore year of college, I got very ill on Thanksgiving, probably the sickest I’ve been in my life. A telephone call from my best friend, which lasted six hours, turned out to be one of the best conversations I would ever have. Life, love, friendship–you name it, we dissected it…while inhaling turkey on both ends of the telephone line. Another call later that evening from the soon-to-be first love of my life made my fever, chills, and body aches seem not so bad. I think I even ventured downstairs for some leftovers.

Then there was the year in my early twenties when I decided I was going to do just as I had promised so many times and spend my Thanksgiving on the beach in Miami. My friend and I ate turkey clubs–extra mayo–while watching the sunset, then danced straight through Black Friday on a rooftop while sampling cranberry cocktails.

And, of course, there was the Thanksgiving when my parents and I found a litter of abandoned kittens while walking to a nearby bakery. We scooped them up and I ate my turkey dinner while bottle-feeding six adorable little faces that I later wrapped in a blanket and rocked to sleep. Their meows made my night.

I could go on and on about Thanksgiving memories, and the truth is that there isn’t one in particular that I treasure most. However, all of the ones I hold dear have something in common–simple, hilarious, warm, out-of-the-ordinary days and nights with the people I love most. This year will be no different, as I embrace food and laughter with my best friend, the same best friend with whom I dissected life, love, and friendship on that college Thanksgiving night so many years ago. This year, however, my munchkin will be close by.

Each of my favorite Thanksgiving memories has reminded me how much I have to be grateful for–friends, family, pets, love, the roof over my head, the food I savor, wonderful conversations, and so much more. Isn’t it amazing how lucky we feel when we take the time to think about everything we have to be thankful for?

I wish you and your families a very happy, healthy, wonderful Thanksgiving.

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9 years ago

Tell me Jedediah, who are you thankful to?

Ernst Below
9 years ago

Hi Jedediah,

I love hearing about the warmth of family Thanksgiving gatherings. It brings back many wonderful memeries of my own for this great granpa. We have a tradition on Thanksgiving to have all at our table tell what the’re thankful for. Sadly this was my first Thanksgivnng without my wonderful loving wife, Anita, but I was still able to say how thankful I was for the wonderful years of love and togetherness the Lord allowed me to have with her. She is greatly missed by everyone that was there.

Thank you for sharing your happy Thanksgiving memories,


John E Nevola
9 years ago

I never met an Italian lady named Jedediah? There must be a crazy story behind that, too!
I too was a Conservative in New York City and cast my first vote for Barry Goldwater in a candy store/voting place in Maspeth, Queens. Yes, it was a lonely existence but what a great feeling to know when you are right! In more than one sense of the word. Never give up, never surrender.

Jimmy B
9 years ago

Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, Jedediah. You are absolutely correct, there are so many things in life that we have to be grateful for. I’m an immigrant who share your conservative values. Keep up the good work.

9 years ago

One Thanksgiving Day I will never forget was probably 30 or more years ago. I was living with my youngest son who was about 5 or 6 at the time and we had nowhere to go on Thanksgiving. So we went deep into the woods and I started a fire with flint and steel and we cooked our dinner over an open fire much like our ancestors might have done a hundred years ago. It was a great time we had together. We didn’t over eat but boy was it good.

9 years ago

Thanks for being a conservative Jedediah, and I’m Italian but never that crazy.

John Astorinaq
9 years ago
Reply to  Fred

Jedediah, Love the name. I’m a 75 year old Italian Grandpa anhd want you to know that you would be welcomed and loved in our family particularly since you seem to be a nice Italian young lady with traditional values. Keep your good work going. Respectfully, Grandpa John

Douglas hudgins
9 years ago

Thanks for sharing your Thanksgivings Jedediah!

9 years ago

Jedi, assuming you are comfortable being addressed as such, Pleased to meet you.

I remember my saddest Thanksgiving day about 50 years ago being the day my eldest sister Mel, being sick on that day, and not being able to join our family for the feast. Moreover, it was her birthday! I got over it as the years passed, loving my big sister’s smiles of contentment.

Regarding kittens, whom my mother would adopt when any stray, dog or cat, would show up at her door, I have some pain to share. It was a summer Sunday afternoon when my dad drove us into the driveway after my family went to the movies and the little kitty lay dead in front of the garage door. I knew not why this might be just and asked the question to my MAKER! I never received an answer as I assumed the responsibility to bury the kitten, choosing behind the garage as the best location.


Wayne Kohler
9 years ago

Great thoughts…….. Happy Thanksgiving Jebediah !!!

9 years ago

THANKSGIVING DAY is a great day! I have so many amazing memories of the Thanksgiving, while growing up on Staten Island, NY. This Thankgiving will be special, my entire family will be together, but three weeks ago Thanksgiving Day was an afterthought.

Happy Thanksgiving to you Jedediah and Emma!!! And to all who read this.

Michael Duncan
9 years ago

Thanks, Jedediah! What great memories.

My favorite Thanksgiving was the time when I was in high school and the power went out. My dad, not wanting to miss Thanksgiving dinner, stoked up the barbeque and that night we had our first taste of B-B-Q turkey, stuffing, and the works. He cooked everything outdoors!

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.


Michael Lepp
9 years ago

I love Thanksgiving and have plenty of family memories of the holiday growing up in Harrisburg, PA. As a life long Dallas Cowboys fan, this is great day to celebrate. This year the Washington Redskins come to Cowboys Stadium. The Cowboys are 6-0 on Thanksgiving Day !!

Happy Thanksgiving to you Jedediah !! And to everyone reading these posts !!

John C. Davidson
9 years ago

I have had several conversations like that with some people I know and some I don’t, but eventually they come to realize as I do, that we never forget the advice shared.

Have a happy Thanksgiving, Jedi. We all should remember why we celebrate it.

9 years ago

Great read! Happy Thanksgiving Jedediah!

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