Days two, three, and four of my Thanksgiving week started with a long, workday Monday. On Mondays, when I work one hour for one employer and eight hours for another, I give thanks for Whatcom County’s excellent grocery stores. It is wonderful to live in a place where we can choose from among food coops, large and small grocery stores, and family-owned corner stores. During a hungry lunchbreak, I’m thankful for a nearby Haggen (founded in Bellingham in 1933) and their growing selection of natural and local foods. It is increasingly easy to find healthful, nutritious foods for a variety of appetites. For those with special dietary preferences, it is now easier than ever to shop for local, raw, gluten free, organic, or vegan meals.
I spent Tuesday saying thanks for Mother Earth and her custodians. Without a healthy natural setting, farmers lack the healthy soil and water that it takes to grow nutritious food. We’re lucky to have a great deal of wild space left here in Whatcom County, and I’m grateful for groups like the Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association, the Washington Department of Ecology, and the Whatcom Land Trust which involve themselves in protecting the ecosystems on which our farms, and we, depend.
Today, I would like to say thank you to my mother and father. Parents, we have a powerful role! We can help influence the thoughts, habits, and self-images of our tender young children before and during the time when their peers, consumer culture, and the pressures that come with adolescence set in. We can lead by example, teaching them how good food connects to good health and good feelings. I’m lucky that my mom taught me how to make good food choices and GREAT Thanksgiving stuffing!