Home » Bo Matthews » Here are some runner-up stories from the Thanksgiving contest.

Here are some runner-up stories from the Thanksgiving contest.

One Thanksgiving my brother and I were on our way to my grandparetns house. Unfortunately on the way he hit a squirrel. This didn’t kill the squirrel and my brother thought the human thing to do was to scoop this poor critter up and take it to the vet. Well, being Thanksgiving vets offices are closed, but he drove all over trying to find a vet’s office. Now, not only was I thinking he was a little strange trying to save this rat with tail, I wanted to get to my grandparents for that wonderful dinner. He had driven to about 5 different vet’s office and was about ready to give up and remember one more. On the way he sees this poor lass hitch-hicking and decides he is going to give him a ride. The hitch-hicker graciously accepts the ride and my brother and him make small talk. I guess this guy finally looks over on the floor board next to him and say: “Um, do you realize you have a dead squirrel in your behind your seat?” Well, my brother decided to be the comic he thinks he is and says: “Yes, that is all we could afford for our Thanksgiving dinner!”


Momma’s last Thanksgiving. My mother was always the head of the family. She would spend the entire month of Nov. getting ready for Thanksgiving, cooking pies, getting the ingredients to her stuffing. 4 years ago Mom had a massive stroke, that took her speech center and she retained only the use of one hand. This happened in August. When Nov. came around I knew she would be very sad not to be able to make her memorable Thanksgiving Dinner. I was determined to keep the family traditions and bring together that Thanksgiving Dinner. I had my entire life helped her with the shopping and preparing the food. So I told her I would keep her traditions alive and do all the things she did. She smiled at me and patted me on my face (one of her only ways to communicate now). On the day of Thanksgiving, as I was preparing the stuffing, I began to cry because I could not remember all the ingredients. Mom had never written down the reciepe. My sister and I tried to list them all but I knew something was missing. Mom was sitting in her wheel chair in the living room, she started to make noise and point to the kitchen. My brother brought her in. She scanned the kitchen counter at the ingredients and started to point to the spices cabinet, he wheeled her over and she started to take out the missing ingredients and line them up on the counter. She turned to me and smiled and motioned me to come close to her, when she patted the side of my face and pulled me close to her and kissed me on the forehead. It brought tears to my eyes to know that no matter what she wanted us to know she still was in there and could assist in making Thanksgiving Dinner. I have never since then forgotten the ingreidents to her stuffing. Once a year my younger sister will call me about a week before thanksgiving and say do you have all the ingriendents? I will smile and say how can I forget! That was Mom’s last Thanksgiving as she passed away the following year in July. I carry on her traditions and know she is happy to know we remember!


When I was a kid, my family used to be in the Thanksgiving parade downtown every year. Our job was to escort Santa during the parade. My dad was the “head elf” that rode on the sled with the Big Guy. I remember one year better then the rest because I was dressed up as a gingerbread man. My husband ,who I was engaged to at the time, was a toy soldier. We had a ton of fun that year in the parade, but the most fun was the ride home afterwards. My husband had a convertable. It was cold, but we put the top down and rode all the way from downtown to Florissant still in full costume. The looks on the adults faces and the excitement on kids faces when they saw us was so much fun! I must have waved the whole way home to one person or another! I loved being in the parade and it is one of my greatest memories as a kid. It was very hard when we no longer escorted Santa, but I will have all those memories for many years!


My most memorable Thanksgiving was when my youngest daughter Chloe was born. She was born premature and came home only a couple days before Thanksgiving of 2003. She has a rare genetic disorder and can catch illnesses easily. She stayed home with her father and I took my oldest daughter Courtney to my mother’s for our family get together. My Niece Becca had surprised me and wrote a holiday prayer for us to say before we all ate. It goes……Here is a prayer I would like to say before dinner. “Here we are today giving thanks to God for all the good things he has gave to us like Thanksgiving and Chloe for letting her stay with us, and for the rest of our and (her) life. She is a prayer we should pray for every night. My niece Becca wrote that and it still brings tears to my eyes. Then my daughter Courtney had everyone go around the room to say what we are most thankful for. I am not most thankful for my family helping me with my special needs daughter that has been a miracle to us all. Thank you!!


Nine years ago today (11/20) at six months pregnant I gave birth to a baby boy, Korbin. I had been in-patient at Barnes Hospital for eight weeks and upon giving birth Korbin was sent to the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) at St. Louis Childrens Hospital. My father and I spent everyday at Korbin’s bedside holding his tiny little hand watching as the machines kept him alive.

A few days later was Thanksgiving, I hadn’t left the bedside since his birth and was greatly neglecting my own medical needs, I hadn’t eaten and was not drinking much water. The nurses in the NICU were doing everything they could to make sure all the families took the time to go to the family lounge and have some of the “Thanksgiving Dinner” the hospital was providing to the families. I was not willing to leave the bedside so Korbin’s nurse brought me a plate from the staff lounge. The nurses had all brought in treats to share with each other since they were away from there own families on the holiday.

I know it seems like such a small gesture but it meant the world to me at the time. This nurse was away from her family spending the day taking care of my son yet she wanted to make sure that I had a Thanksgiving meal too.

This same nurse(who often cared for my son) stayed several hours after her shift was over to be with my family and I in our time of sorrow when my son passed away on Christmas Day.

The compasion of the nurses that cared for me during my eight week hospitalization and for Korbin during his short life inspired me to become a nurse. When I started nursing school I vowed to spend every Thanksgiving working so that I can make sure every family is shown the compasion that I was shown that day (and every day of his hospitalization). Nine years later this is still a very hard time of year but in memory of my son I am at work at St. Louis Childrens Hospital every Thanksgiving.


I wanted to tell you a story about the greatest husband in the world. MINE!! My father was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2006 and had to go through major surgery, chemo, and radiation. When he was hospitalized for his surgery the doctors told us he could not live alone while he was recovering and going through his treatments. I was so

scared, I talked to my husband and he said “Don’t worry honey, we’ll make it work. By the time my dad was released from the hospital, Doug had moved our bedroom to the basement, redid the floors, got all of Dad’s necessities from his house and had them moved in and ready when we got home. He helped me through taking care of Dad, and the house, and the kids the whole time Dad was living with us. Last year, on Thanksgiving day, we had to take Dad back to the hospital, he had a severe lung infection and was in the ICU. Doug stayed with me every minute, he even spent his 40th birthday sleeping on the floor outside the ICU, keeping me together and being my rock. Unfortunately, Dad passed away the morning after Doug’s birthday on November 28, 2007. This year Dougs birthday falls on Thanksgiving Day, and even though times are tight I would really like to make this year extra special for him. He so deserves everything I could possibly give him and more.


This is more of a heartwarming story, so to start it off……I was born to an un-fit mother who already had a child she couldn’t take care of, so when I was 1 month old, I as well as my half-sister were taken by the state and my sister and I were put into a foster care program, we were bounced from home to home going through some of the most un-thought of physical and mental abuse. It took a long time for us to be adopted because of the fact that no one wanted to adopt 2 children at one time, but in the same token, didn’t want to split up a brother and sister, well we were finally adopted and that situation wasn’t at all any better then foster homes, again through the physcial and mental abuse, but I stood strong and made it through high school and went on with my life, not looking back to the past that had filled my heart with so much hatred, so everyone from then on that tried to help me I pushed away because of being afraid of being hurt. I have always been alone because of this, and there for I have never had a true family where at thanksgiving everyone sits at a table and spends time with each other and share the love that a family is supposed to have, until this year!!! I finaly let me guard down and allowed a very special person into my life and we just recently got married July 25, 2008. We have a beautiful family together, I have 2 beautiful little step-daughters which I have taken in as my own since there father hasn’t been around since the day they were born, but this is my family and this is my first true holiday season, thanksgiving and christmas as a family, and to recieve this meal would help allow me to spend time with my family as they deserve, and I would like to let people know that just because you have had a rough past or are going through a rough time in life, no matter what it will always make you a stronger and

more driven individual in the end so keep your head up and take what life gives you and just know that you can overcome anything life throws your way as long as you keep your family close and cherish everyday that the lord gives you, cause you never know what the next day holds. thank you for taking your time to read this story and even if my family dosen’t recieve this meal, I hope that it helps someone see what they have been missing in their life……..their family!


1944, somewhere close to the border of Germany and France. A platoon of American Soldiers get caught by surprise; machine guns firing, hand grandees exploding, tanks and men fighting on both sides. After the smoke had cleared many men lie on the battlefield and after several days, a gray haired woman trudges out to search for some food that maybe the soldiers had dropped. While searching, she hears a moaning, and finds a soldier, badly wounded, still alive. Unable to tell what army he is in or who he might

be she drags him to her barn and begins to nurse him the best way she can. After several months, the soldier still in very poor shape, she manages to cart the soldier to a US Army outpost 10 miles from her home. The soldier whether an American or German could use better care than she can give him, so they start on their journey. When they arrive, the doctors immediately begin treating the soldier and give nourishment to the woman. She reports her story and the doctors tell her they will take care of the soldier and find out who he is, then as she came, she disappears back to her home. After several weeks in an hospital, the soldier awakes and is able to let the doctors know who he is……

1944, the day before Thanksgiving, at a Missouri farmhouse. My grandparents have a surprise visitor come to their door. He is dressed in an Army Officer’s uniform, but unlike the first visit they got from another Army Officer back a few months ago, when their son was reported lost, this officer has miraculous news: Their Son Is Alive!!…

We can all give Thanks for many of the blessings that come to us. Especially, when we have lost all hope……


Thanksgiving 1999 was like no other. We had just became foster parents for the first time and had custody of a beautiful 3 year old boy with a full head of blond curls. We were so proud and went to my mother-in-laws for 3 days at Thanksgiving. We arrived on a Monday evening with our 2 sons and our new foster son. He had a very out-going personality and was loved immediately by my husband’s family. Thanksgiving morning arrives and I get up because I can hear our foster son talking with my mother-in-law and I knew she was busy getting everything ready, she was an awsome cook. So I went in to help her. Our foster son was sitting at the bar, she had already fixed him breakfast. So I came up behind him and was talking with my mother-in-law and our foster son. While talking to him I started looking in his hair. He was always scratching his head. Oh my gosh . . right there as big as you please was a head lice!!! I almost died. I trapped it in his hair and had my mother-in-law come over and look, and she too thought that was what it was. What other bug would be in a childs hair right? So I called my sister-in-law who had worked in a classroom and seen head lice before. My mother-in-law in the meantime had killed it, but wraped it in plastic wrap and put it in the frig. while she continued to prepare our Thanksgiving Feast. My sister-in-law arrives and confirms that it was a head lice. So we call the local supermarket owner at home (they live in a very small town). He met my sister-in-law at the store and she took everything they had. My sister-in-law then checked all our heads, of course, we all had it now. So I started washing heads and sending them out to her on the back porch and she pulled out nits. I started washing all the bed linens, and anything else I

could. Dinner went on as planned. Everyone thought it was so funny, except me. I cried. As soon as dinner was over, we headed home to decontaminate our home and car. I took the 3 year old foster son to the laundry mat with me with everything in our home that was washable, while my husband and two sons stayed home and vacuumed and cleaned everything at home. The laundry mat was connected to a gas station convenience store and my foster son kept going in while I was switching loads and stealing candy. The clerks thought it was so cute they were letting him. I was getting really mad. I would pay them for the candy, then throw it away. I couldn’t let him have it. It was about midnight on Thanksgivig when we got home from the laundry mat. My husband was still cleaning, so I started helping him. The next thing I knew my younger son, then 9 years old was running and screaming. Our 3 year old was chasing him with a power drill on. By the time we got to bed at 3 a.m. on this Thanksgiving, the only thing I was thankful for was that it was finally over.

Hope you enjoyed these Thanksgiving stories…please feel free to post a comment about your favorite or add your own memory to share.

Thanks for Blawging with the Big Dawg!

Happy Thanksgiving!