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Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  To our modern understanding and sensibilities it can be hard to reconcile the historical record with what the day is supposed to represent.  When I was growing up, making hand-shaped turkeys in school, it was easy to buy into the feel-good story of European settlers and native people sitting down together for a communal feast.  Maybe it happened, it probably didn't, but what came later- disease, one-sided war, cruelty and inhumanity- of that we have no illusions.  Not anymore.  

But as our understanding and acceptance of the historical context has changed, the holiday itself has taken on its own meaning, tradition, and sensibilities.  Truthfully, we don't need pilgrims and falsehoods in order to have Thanksgiving. Family, fidelity, togetherness and-yes- even thankfulness are reason enough.

My mother passed away nearly five years ago.  Losing her was one of the most painful experiences of my life.  It was to her house the family gathered every year for Thanksgiving.  My clearest and most cherished memories of her take place around the holiday.  The busyness of her decorating and preparation.  The late night before and early morning of.  The joy she felt at having everyone she loved around her for that precious day. When I close my eyes I'm still 6 years old- footy pajamas in the kitchen, my entire world the smell of her cooking, the warmth of hugs.

I miss her every day- every moment of these past several years.  The pain dulls but the empty place in my heart is still there, always with me.  I wish she were here, now, to see what I've accomplished in my life.  I wish she were hear to be here with us all as we gather at my home, as I take up the mantel and do my best to fill her apron.

Thanksgiving isn't pilgrims or plenty to me.  It's the memories and gratitude I feel for having been blessed with an amazing family, loyal friends and a life filled with joys and wonders beyond counting or measure.  I am grateful for blessings big and small- not of the religious variety, but simply the minor and major wonders which shape me, have shaped me and will shape me.  

Alice Walker wrote one of my favorite novels- The Color Purple. Her prose is poetry, rich with warmth and wisdom.  Of thanks, she writes; “'Thank you' is the best prayer that anyone could say. I say that one a lot. Thank you expresses extreme gratitude, humility, understanding.”

Prayer isn't part of my life anymore.  Prayers are just wishes- and as with all wishes they tend to be selfish and misdirected.  But I do say thank you, sincerely, respectfully and with all the love in my heart.

To my husband, I thank you for loving me and protecting my fragile heart with loyalty and gentleness that borders on the divine.

To my sister, I thank you for giving me someone to never doubt, always admire and forever respect beyond words.

To my mother, I thank you for raising me, for loving me and for teaching me every lesson on kindness, love, generosity and faithfulness.

And to my friends, each of you whether I see you each day or have never met you in person- I say thank you for inspiring me and filling my life with laughter and joy.  

Happy Thanksgiving, my friends.  My family.  To each of you, one and all- Thank you. 
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KarToon12 Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Chiman1293 Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
Happy thanks giving to you to!
MusePony Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thankyou, Kitty :')
Axis-of-Rotation Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
And I promised myself I wouldn't cry...

Happy Thanksgiving PixelKitties :3
Haze-man Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
You go PK!
spikerules64 Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
Sorry about what happened to your mom:(, my father passed away almost two years ago so I know the feeling:hug:
BlueDevilHunter Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
May Happynes shine upon you and you're family. 
LinBrightmoon Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist
*hugs*  Thank *you.*  This holiday has become a nexus of stress and arguing at my house-- Thank you so much for helping me remember what it's really about.  Happy Thanksgiving.
evangelian007 Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
That was truly very heartwarming and sweet what you wrote Pixel. :happycry:
Also happy Thanksgiving! :hug:
SuperJesse64 Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
Happy Thanksgiving, Pixel!
Galistar07water Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Artist
I lost my favorite aunt to cancer this summer and had to attend a total of three family members' funerals in one year. Although the pain of losing them had lessen, the scar is still there. Not a day passed when I haven't thought about the people I've lost. But still, I am thankful to those who are still here with me and I thank you for being here on Deviantart with us. Thank you for sharing your art work and your love of MLP:FiM, Monster High dolls, etc to us who still love to dream like children.

Happy Thanksgiving.
NodoubtbuodoN Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you too, Pixel. Happy Thanksgiving.
flippedoutkyrii Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Wonderfully written journal.

I know us Canadians are a month and a half late to the party, but happy Thanksgiving :)
Blayaden Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I like Thanksgiving more than Christmas.  The whole family (with extended family and friends) gathering together and sharing a meal... 

We chat, we sing, we cry... together.  Even though I'm scared of the crowd, I'm happy to see and hear my family together and enjoying themselves.  Even from a distance.
ThatRandomNerd Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
And I get to spend it dying at a Kmart because Thanksgiving is essentially Black Friday 2: Electric Boogaloo.
mistypine01 Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Lovely journal you wrote. I hope you and yours will have happiness and love everyday.
Happy Thanksgiving, PK.
Twylite-Sparkle Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
Lost my gramdmother on that day 20 years ago so I share those feels. I'm thankful everyone still cares for each other even if we're dysfunctional at times. Thank you for sharing your art with us & hope you & your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Amana07 Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I know how you feel about losing loved ones.  Hope you have a happy Thanksgiving, PK. 
pupshackle Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
Ok I have to tell you this touched my heart and soul and while I sit here at work I shed some tears because I could almost feel your loss and your heart breaking. *HUGS* Have a happy thanksgiving  with your friends and family.
FlywheelAndFirefly Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you, Pixels, for sharing this bit of your life with us. I have little doubt that, if you approach the day with the same energy and attention you bring to your art, it will be well enjoyed by all who attend. (Just don't go organizing any 5-mile 3-legged races, bringing out gas powered sewing machines, or anything like that).
TrueMadayar Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013

What you describe is basically Christmas for me, a day that lost all original meaning to me but the part of family getting together and being together. Sadly, it gets less and less every year - damn my family's trend to act like pool balls - seperating all over the world, never to reunite again.



Thank you for your awesome art and awesome mentality you share.
vest Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
An awesome read.

I've heard of walking in another's shoes, but 'do my best to fill her apron' really hit. We've all known about being unable to truly appreciate what we have until it's gone, but I can't even wrap my head around the similar notion of not knowing what others do for us until we have to take their spot.

Best of luck to your family, and especially to you. From the way you speak of her, it sounds like the apron's got a few secret pockets for the fairydust and whimsy that helped her out.

And of course, thank you for sharing what you do here.
bunnimation Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Professional Filmographer
Thank YOU for all that you give to people, to this fandom and more. Your time, your creativity, your sense of humor, your point of view. There have been many a days that haven't started so well but seeing your art in my inbox always cheers me up. Happy Thanksgiving Mrs. Pixelkitties
Captain64 Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
I really enjoyed reading this journal. It really expresses how much you genuine love the holiday.

For me, Thanksgiving is a great holiday because it emphases the gratitude which we may take for granted in our day-to-day lives. 

I hope you have a good Thanksgiving, both PixelKitties and whoever would read this xD 
Captain64 Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
whoever would read this comment*
Legate47 Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow, that was deep. Sorry to hear about what your mother. :(

But on a lighter note: I may not know you, but I'm definitely grateful for the excellent artwork that you provide to us on this site and to all the other great artists on this site, and I surely appreciate my family, even if at times they seem intolerable.

Enjoy your turkey.
Legate47 Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
*what happened to your mother.
SoldierBoyXIII Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013
I'm very sorry about your mother. Hug?
nocara Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013
very beautiful ...
anime-underdog Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Nicely written, not since My Little Dashy have I ever felt such feels. All joking aside, I'm touched by your story, and as I was reading it, I was reminded of some of the things I'm thankful for. I'm thankful for my family, who have always been there for me, even when I was imposable to live with.

I'd like to thank you too Pixel, for taking the time out of your life to draw Ponies, and for being a chill gal. It means a lot to me that I have a place that lets me post and talk about Ponies, when almost all of the internet hangs me for doing something as simple as quoting from Friendship is Magic. Your art, heck all art means a lot to me.

Happy Thanksgiving, don't let Princess Celestia eat all the stuffing. :P
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