Friday, November 27, 2009

Giving Thanks, Spreading the Word

So, I cooked for two days straight, which I love to do, and we housed a tiny cottageful of people who camped out under loads of quilts on Wednesday night in beds and on sofas and even on the hardwood floor (kids can sleep on anything; I think their spines are made of rubber).  It was a fun few days, but I have to admit that I also love hanging out tonight in the cottage with a few candles lit, the rain and waves blustering outside, the cats sleeping, a Scottish mystery (Hamish MacBeth) in the DVD player, and just the two of us, feasting on Thanksgiving leftovers.  There's a reason I make enough stuffing to feed a brigade.  I do love my Thanksgiving leftovers--maybe even more than the meal itself.

Yeesch, it's really storming out.  The cottage is creaking; boots and slickers and umbrellas are drying by the door.  I am counting my blessings, including the roof over my head, those little plastic containers full of food in my fridge, and the coats that kept us dry as we walked home from the ferry today.  This is going to be a tough Christmas for many.  Thankfully there are many ways to help people who need a hand this winter. Here in Maine, in addition to the incredibly important coats for kids donations, some organizations, like the Maine Association of Area Agencies on Aging, are collecting coats for seniors.  For those knitters and crocheters who, like me, tend to craft obsessively during the winter, a great way to help out is by knitting for charity.  The Daily Knitter has a long list of folks for whom we can knit.  Other places that need donations now more than ever are local animal shelters.  Even a big bag of food or litter is a help.

If you have a favorite charity, please tell us about it in the comments section so that we can spread the word this holiday season.  

Thanks so much, my friends, for your inspiration, friendship, wit, and wisdom.  You make every day brighter over here in my corner of the blogging world.


  1. Your cottage with the blustering wind and waves outside sounds enchanting!

    One cause that I'd love for you to share with others is the "Be A Match" bone marrow registry. Anyone interested in being placed on the registry as a potential donor can request a kit from

    It's a simple procedure to get added to the registry.

  2. It's so true, we have so many things to be grateful for...count each blessings; big or small!
    Well, y brother is very active in missionary work. Here's a link that touched me recently=
    Such a great idea Gigi! Have a cozy & warm cuddly weekend! xo as always~

  3. It sounds so cozy at your place, Gigi... and I can almost feel some chill in that rain...bbbrrr... Glad you had such a sweet Thanksgiving holiday with many gathered at your home and around your table. There are so many great folks doing great things for charity. A new-ish charitable organization is Craft Hope, which has special projects hand-crafters can join in on to help those in need worldwide: I'm checking Daily Knitter now for where I can send some scarves! Thank you for this post, Gigi. Happy Weekend, my friend ((HUGS))

  4. that sounds like the most perfect thanksgiving! I wish is were bigger here in Canada. For some reason, it's just not. Kids spines are rubber aren't they!

  5. Gigi, your Thanksgiving sounds so lovely. And what a great idea to ask for people's suggestions for various charities at this time of year.

    I recently came across an organization called Hugs and Hope ( which you can send "happy mail" and gifts to terminally ill children, giving them a little surprise to look forward to...

  6. Oh, your Thanksgiving sounded wonderful, Gigi. I'm so glad that it was full of food, fun, family and friends.
    Don't you just love being indoors when the weather is bad outside ? I know I do.
    What wonderful work that you do for charity. I am full of admiration and respect, Gigi. The charity that I am going to mention is the R.S.P.C.C.which stands for The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children.
    Thanks for the opportunity to mention it. XXXX

  7. Oh Gigi...what a stupid woman I am. I got my charities mixed up. It's the N.S.P.C.C. which is the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. I was mixing it up with the R.S.P.C.A which is the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. One good thing for my mistake. I've managed to mention 2 charities !!!! I'm not really stupid...just tired. XXXX

  8. This post reminded me of so many of the holidays in my past....lots and lots of people, fun, and food and most would stay overnight because they lived too far away to drive home...maybe because of this my absolute favorite days of the year are always the days After the holidays...pure blissful peace and great leftovers. Without a doubt, for me the leftovers taste better than the big meal:)

    This year the charity I would have to mention is any local non-profit hospice...unfortunately every family is touched by the need for this at some time in their lives.

  9. Your description of your cosy little cottage being buffeted by the wind and rain is lovely. We have the other extreme here at the moment - exceptionally hot and windy. Stepping outside feels like you're walking into a fan-forced oven! It's so sad to think that for many Christmas is not the happy event that we all take for granted. Thank God for all the wonderful charities and people who work so hard to make the lives of others better. Leigh

  10. Gigi,
    Stormy nights + a good movie + warm blankets with someone to cozy up to - sounds divine!
    Hope you are still enjoying the delicious leftovers.
    A charity dear to my heart is a local one for helping the homeless get back on their feet and into homes and jobs.
    So many other ones I cherish too - second chance rescue and arts for innercity kids.

  11. How enchanting your world is, Gigi. And how wonderful that you had so many loved ones around. I have to agree that no matter how much I look forward to seeing friends and family, when they depart and it is just my husband and children, I feel embraced by their love and the comfort of my house.
    My charity this year is my local domestic violence shelter. They need anything from children clothes to blankets.
    Love that you brought this up. I'm inspired to mention this in a post as well.
    Enjoy the stormy weather in your lovely cottage.

  12. There is an organization here in the Los Angeles area that my family and I and our friends have volunteered at for the past 4 years and that it is. - putting together bags of much needed items for the homeless. After packing all the bags up, we take them out and find people to give them to and talk to them and try to find help for them. It's a wonderful organization.

    And also, if I might put a plug for the organization I started a few years ago - - we bring movies on a weekly basis free of charge for seniors to check out and live theatre production tickets. With nursing home costs around $3,000 a month - seniors often don't have enough money to do much else - we provide good conversation, love, laughter while distributing our movies and tickets on a weekly basis. Human interaction is what is needed the most especially this time of year.

    Beautiful post, Gigi! A belated Happy Thanksgiving to you and Todd! xxoo

  13. Oh, how I would LOVE to sit in a corner of your cottage.
    You describe it so well, that I can almost feel the atmosphere.
    You seem to have a wonderful time, and once again, I wish I could live it.

    Have a wonderful sunday!


  14. my two charities are breast cancer prevention and child abuse prevention.

    great read

  15. Ooh, what a perfect night you describe!! And Hamish MacBeth to boot!! I love that show. It is filmed in a most idyllic little town called Plockton. I've been fortunate enough to be there.. there are palm trees and a castle in the distance.

    Our favourite charities are several Canine Assistant organizations... in fact, my husband is doing a concert for them next Friday... as well as the animal rescue shelter from which we adopted Edward and Apple. We also give regularly to our Union Mission for the homeless. I love your idea about the knitting... and am off to check out that site! Thank you!

    Oh, and I am grateful for finding your wonderful blog!! We seem to have so much in common!

  16. A cozy cottage during a rain storm sounds wonderful. We were just 2 for Thanksgiving for the first time. It started out feeling very lonely, but by the end of the day...we decided that it was a good day and we were very glad to have each other.


  17. I love that as you are counting your blessings you are thinking of ways to help others. I love the sharing of ideas, too because it helps me to shift my focus. Most of my life is focused on elementary school. It's where I work, where my child is, where my heart is. I find it so very easy to give to the needs I find there, but I love this challenge to move outside of that and give to needs in other places. Love that. Happy Sunday, my friend.

  18. What a wonderful cause! I really enjoyed your post about Hallowell. Those images are so captivating yet spooky, I imagine a setting to a scary movie. I hope you had a smashing Thanksgiving. And I'm ready to send your giveaway package!!! Please email me your address:

    Hope you had a lovely weekend!!

  19. Gigi,
    Hello Neighbor!!!
    I too was sharing the rain in Maine,and it didn't fall mainley on the plains.
    The coast really got their share.
    lovely post.

  20. ackkkk!!!! I just know I'd love to spend a weekend at your cottage, with rubber boots & umbrellas and storming
    we could read Dickens and drink tea, then switch to wine
    chatting and laughing

    make sure you save me some stuffing!!! xo
    (I love stuffing.)

  21. Oh wow, you fed the whole extended family by the sounds. Yes, it's great to have everyone over, but lovely to have some quite time after.

    I love that you pointed out about Charities. We always help the Salvation Army, they do an fantastic job here in Aus with very little fanfair.

    We also like to help out overseas with children in particular.

    A great aid organisation is Doctors Without Borders.



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