Friday, November 27, 2015

Thanksgiving AFM Style

One of the most common sayings on the ship is "It's not wrong, just different" and I have decided this is going to be my motto for dealing with the holiday season far away from home. First up this week, was (American) Thanksgiving Day!

Back in October, the ship had a 'Friendsgiving' to celebrate all the countries Thanksgivings together. The idea was to not show preference to one country's holidays since it would be impossible to celebrate all the holidays of every country represented onboard. While we were sad at first, those of us from the United States decided to have our own Thanksgiving instead. We planned a little get together/potluck and gave into the idea that we wouldn't have Turkey...except that we did end up having turkey for dinner and it turned into a multi-national everyone eat all the food event! In the end, it was a great day spent with lots of friends cooking and having a delicious meal and stuffing ourselves until we couldn't get off the couch. Here's some of the highlights:

A few nurse friends and I after our trip to the local grocery to buy the ingredients we needed. There is a small shop on the ship where we can buy some basic foods and snacks, but anything more than that we have to get from one of the 2 shops in town (it's a very interesting experience!). Notice the large "pumpkin" Anne is holding on the left. We aren't really sure what it actually is but it worked very well for pumpkin pie and sweet potato casserole! 

Here I am picking out all the seeds from the pumpkin. I just couldn't have a pumpkin and not roast the seeds! They came out delicious and were a lovely fall treat. We needed something to do while we waiting for the pumpkin to roast...

Here's is one portion of the food assortment we ended up with. These tables kept getting fuller and fuller with all kinds of amazing treats - all homemade with ingredients found in town! We sure do have a talented and creative bunch of crew members :) Some of the highlights included several pumpkin and apple pies, a pumpkin cake roll, pecan pie, corn casserole, mashed potatoes, baked brie and (my 'unbiased' favorite) sweet potato casserole!

And finally, a group picture - there was about triple this many people in total. The rest are in another section watching a rerun of last year's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade!
I'll leave you with a short list of what I thankful for this Thanksgiving:
Health and healthcare when I need it
Family and friends (new and old)
Mercy Ships and the opportunity to live and work on this ship
The beautiful people of Madagascar who have welcomed us to their country and entrusted us with their healing
Surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses, lab techs, pharmacists, radiologists and so many others who are giving their time to take care of our patients
The rest of the crew who tirelessly work to keep the ship running and never complain about being out of the hospital 'spotlight'
So many legs healing straighter on A ward (and all the other incredible patients too!)
A sweet, beautiful, healthy new niece back home
Fast internet and Skype that allows me to see her and talk to the rest of my family pretty much anytime
God- for His love and provision of all things
For amazing donors and supporters (like YOU!) who allow me to be here witnessing all these awesome things. Thank you!