A Very Sterling Thanksgiving

December 1st, 2011 by John Morris

When two people become a couple, their families should meet. After several misfires, the Family Morris from Downingtown, PA met the Sterling Clan of Rochester, New York. It happened during Thanksgiving 2011.

It was a given my wife, Lyn and I would easily like this large, Irish family because we already love Beth’s partner, Julie Sterling. They came as advertised by their daughter. They were warm, friendly and great fun to hang out with.

Thanksgiving dinner was held at the oldest daughter, Eileen’s home because the eldest son, Dan’s suffered an ill timed flooded basement. The agenda switch was seamless. The house filled with all varieties of Sterlings: young and old; active and relaxed; quiet and loud. I did no nose count, but I’d guess there were about 35 of them with three Morrises.

We did what Americans do on Thanksgiving. Most men and some women sat around watching football with conversation wedged in between snaps. I learned a lot about all things Sterling during this time. The remaining Sterling women worked hard in the kitchen readying the grand bird and the trimmings.

Our pre-meal prayer of thanks was led by Sister Eileen Sterling. You know all large Irish or Italian families have at least one Nun or Priest to call on for these moments.

After dinner, we returned to the living room where cards were given to Sterlings with upcoming birthdays. Sister Eileen made out quite nicely which is how it should be.

We finished the last of the holiday wine while the same hard working women cleaned the kitchen and divided the leftovers. Grand-Pop Dick got to extract any remaining turkey meat from the carcass.

The Sterling family set a high standard for human warmth this day. Their shining moment this day was making new friends feel so comfortable inside their world.

It was a Very Sterling Thanksgiving.





The old boy writing this blog wears many hats: Vietnam Veteran, husband & father, salesman and techno-dude. After my service with the Army Security Agency, I operated a sign company for nineteen years, The sign industry changed after CAD/CAM machines made the task easy enough for the non-talented. I sold my company and never looked back.

Life has granted me a life partner better than I deserve. My wife, Lyn is a transplanted Kansas gal. Her bliss is teaching kindergarten and first grade.

I am the most proud of my children. My son, Adam lives an international life teaching English and living in Sozhou, China. He is married to one of life's truly lovely women, Yuri Kim. My daughter, Beth grew up in a small town and found her way in life means working and living in major cities like Chicago and New York. She and her life partner, Julie Sterling married in LaJolla, California in 2010.

I like getting the newest gadgets, but also I like to use things until they are useless, i.e., my last personal car was an 88 Honda Prelude Si.

I wrote a Vietnam Veteran newsletter for nine years. During this journey, I learned I like to write. It is a harmless exercise that rewards honest effort while tolerating failure gracefully. I been away from it for too long. My son gave me the blog, and it was a lifeline back to writing.

My best advice is to show the world what you can do but to accept only your opinion of who and what you are.

Update: In August 2008, my job became one of the half-million jobs that went away that month. I took the following year getting the home ready for my official retirement.

In October 2009, I took a part-time job as a saleman at the vaulted Maxwell's Hardware.

On November 29, 2011, I reached my 66th birthday, and I officially started Social Security. I intend to stay with Maxwell's as long as I can contribute.