Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I am a blessed man in too many ways to enumerate.
A loving wife. Two great young women who call me "Dad". A brilliant and adoring and adorable mother. A generous and thoughtful extended family of five sisters, a brother, and a whole passel of neices and nephews and the resulting greats and in-laws.
I married into another whole wonderful family that treats me like blood kin.
I live in the greatest country on earth that allows me to think for myself.
I have a job that allows me to perform (one of my favorite activities) and fool around in nature (another favorite pasttime).
I live in a beautiful old house smack in the middle of a gorgeous town, with a riverside walking trail right out my back door, and two blocks from the church where I worship.
I have a heritage of smart, funny, boisterous, reverent, affectionate loved ones that I remember with true love and gratitude this Thanksgiving day.
Thank you Lord!

Continuing a tradition begun by Abraham Lincoln in 1863, President Obama made the following proclamation for Thanksgiving, 2009.


What began as a harvest celebration between European settlers and indigenous communities nearly four centuries ago has become our cherished tradition of Thanksgiving. This day's roots are intertwined with those of our Nation, and its history traces the American narrative.

Today, we recall President George Washington, who proclaimed our first national day of public thanksgiving to be observed "by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God," and President Abraham Lincoln, who established our annual Thanksgiving Day to help mend a fractured Nation in the midst of civil war. We also recognize the contributions of Native Americans, who helped the early colonists survive their first harsh winter and continue to strengthen our Nation. From our earliest days of independence, and in times of tragedy and triumph, Americans have come together to celebrate Thanksgiving.

As Americans, we hail from every part of the world. While we observe traditions from every culture, Thanksgiving Day is a unique national tradition we all share. Its spirit binds us together as one people, each of us thankful for our common blessings.

As we gather once again among loved ones, let us also reach out to our neighbors and fellow citizens in need of a helping hand. This is a time for us to renew our bonds with one another, and we can fulfill that commitment by serving our communities and our Nation throughout the year. In doing so, we pay tribute to our country's men and women in uniform who set an example of service that inspires us all. Let us be guided by the legacy of those who have fought for the freedoms for which we give thanks, and be worthy heirs to the noble tradition of goodwill shown on this day.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim Thursday, November 26, 2009, as a National Day of Thanksgiving. I encourage all the people of the United States to come together, whether in our homes, places of worship, community centers, or any place where family, friends and neighbors may gather, with gratitude for all we have received in the past year; to express appreciation to those whose lives enrich our own; and to share our bounty with others.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twentieth day of November, in the year of our Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.


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