October 22, 2021


The Thanksgiving after Heather and Patrick, with a group of his friends from seminary (including Julia), had enjoyed a trip to Italy, Heather was inspired to create an Italian style Thanksgiving feast.  She invited Patrick and Dave to drive up from Orlando for the weekend, and I drove over from South Carolina. She invited a group of her Nashville friends and Tracy brought a couple who were just moving to Nashville.  She’d gone to high school with Chris.  Heather’s former boyfriend Eric also came, and that was the day he met another friend of Heather’s named Helen (who eventually married Eric). This photo shows one table of guests, with another one behind it. 

One source of inspiration was the hospitality they enjoyed with an Italian family on that trip. Dave had met this family when he took some volleyball teams to play in Italy, and they had stayed in an apartment the family owned.  When he told them about the seminary group’s upcoming trip, they insisted they stay in the apartment while there.  Heather was amazed that the wife cooked such delicious and bountiful meals for them in her tiny kitchen.  They spent hours with the family at their table enjoying several courses and great conversations. The couple and their son and daughter are seen in the photo below.

Heather’s Italian feast brought together another diverse group to savor the meal, wine and conversation—and to forge new connections and friendships. Dave, Patrick and I stayed at Bill and Jane’s home and we enjoyed showing Dave around Nashville and Franklin that weekend. Family traditions are wonderful for holidays, and it is also delightful to create new experiences and include friends old and new.  

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