Today I am grateful for good foods, waters, and medicines.
I love food. And, I've had plenty of it.
I am grateful that I live in a time that lets me sample food from all over the country and all over the world...without ever leaving Mansfield.
I grew up with plenty of southern cookin'. Mom's kitchen was a place where many gathered, and food would begin rolling out -- chicken, pork chops, rice and gravy, green beans, biscuits and apple butter, peach cobbler...all made from scratch with no recipes.
She made her own apple butter and ketchup. Strings of leatherbritches would be drying in the attic. And, hundreds of jars would be put up during the summer harvest to get us through the winter.
In my adult life, I married someone who grew up in southern California, so I was introduced to Mexican food. (Mom and dad weren't quite into Mexican food, and didn't know what to do with an avocado Kerry brought them.)
But, I've had the opportunity to travel across the country and various places in the world and taste of their cuisine. Jordan's wife is Filipino, so I've had some of their delicious dishes. And, I've had a new experience with Vietnamese food at Erik and Jason's.
I'm especially grateful that if I want to eat a good dinner, it doesn't have to come from something I've grown or something I've butchered. I can do it, and have done it. But, it's nice to not have to rely on my skills for that.
I'm grateful for good clean water. Our well produces the best water we've ever tasted from an underground river 110 feet under the surface. We can hardly stand bottled water or water in a restaurant.
And medicines, along with good medical care have extended my life and the life of my children on more than one occasion.
Our babies were born in good, clean hospitals, and were gently brought into this world by a good medical team -- not in a warn torn area by the side of the road.
My mishaps and illnesses have been quickly taken care of.
A condition that nearly took my life nine years ago was handled with careful surgery, and I was brought back from the brink. In years past, two cousins died from the same condition I had.
I had two very premature grandchildren born -- one at 27 weeks, the other at 28 weeks. They were so tiny I was afraid to hold them for fear of them slipping through my elbow. But, good medical care brought them into the thriving childhood they are experiencing now.
All I have to do is look through my family's history to see where relatives died from being burned by a pot of bean spilling on them, several dying from the 1918 flu epidemic, others from whooping cough and diptheria, juvenile diabetes, and a three-week old baby dying from syphilis.
I am so grateful that I live in modern times where the chances for living are higher than at any point in history; where food can be used as a vital medicine, and where clean and clear water can be bought or pumped up from our well to keep us hydrated.