Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

A Thanksgiving of gratitude November 25, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 5:00 AM
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I created this Thanksgiving centerpiece using a vintage tray, vintage candles, pinecones from friends, shells from Detroit Lake and letters from my 1970s Scrabble game. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.

Start each day with a grateful heart.

This Thanksgiving, more than ever, those seem important words to consider and then follow.

I’m thankful to my friend Beth Ann, who back in January, before 2020 evolved into the year of COVID-19, gifted me with a daily gratitude journal. It helped me then, and helps me now, to focus on reasons to feel thankful.

A quick look back to the beginning of the year shows a much different gratitude mindset as I wrote of thankfulness for photos of the grandkids, a handwritten letter, a comment from a blog reader that my images of rural Minnesota calm her, time with friends and more.

On March 7, I wrote, “Grateful for another opportunity to spend time with Mom.” I didn’t know it then, but this would mark the last time I stepped inside her care center room, hugged her, kissed her cheek. My heart hurts now every time I think of Mom. It’s an ache that never leaves, that rises sometimes unexpectedly to the surface in raw emotions. But then I reshift my thinking and consider how grateful I am that Mom is still with us, in the care of kind, caring and compassionate individuals who truly value her.

Shortly after that last in-person early March visit, everything changed. There would be no more visits inside the care center. Life as we once knew it changed due to COVID-19. My gratitude journal reflects that as my writing focused more on thankfulness for beautiful days outdoors, for mask mandates, for a stop at a winery, for country drives. And, more recently, for loved ones recovered from COVID-19, for a day that passes without news of another person I know infected with the virus.

In this year 2020, gratitude takes effort. But it’s still there. And this Thanksgiving, more than any, I feel grateful for my health, for my loved ones, for all the blessings that define my days.

Dear readers, I wish you a blessed and joyful Thanksgiving overflowing with gratitude.

© Copyright 2020 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

 

14 Responses to “A Thanksgiving of gratitude”

  1. Susan Ready Says:

    Wishing you and your family the blessings of the season. We all have much to be grateful for during these uncertain times.

  2. Almost Iowa Says:

    I wish you a blessed and joyful Thanksgiving overflowing with gratitude.

    And you and yours too.

  3. valeriebollinger Says:

    Happy Thanksgiving Audrey, to you and yours.

  4. I am grateful for your continued blogs about rural Southern Minnesota. Your support of my blog over the last few years. Audrey- wishing you and your family a safe and healthy Thanksgiving no matter how you spend it! 😊

  5. Kiandra Judge Says:

    Thank you! Have a blessed Thanksgiving

  6. Ken Wedding Says:

    Thank you for your hopeful, caring, and joyful words.

  7. Lovely sentiments, Audrey. A blessed and happy Thanksgiving to you.


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