Countdown to Thanksgiving Story #4: Grandma Chris’s Rye Bread

(Sorry to bread geeks everywhere: this picture does not show true rye bread. I don’t have any pictures of rye bread in my stock photos!)

Today’s story is about two topics: Thanksgiving and traditions. Actually, even more. It’s about bread. And teaching traditions to children. But most of all, it’s about appreciating husbands and building your marriage. It comes from the January 1996 Ensign, and it’s called, “Grandma Chris’s Rye Bread” by Mary Ellen Bramwell.

In this story, a woman realizes that she has been selfish in preserving her own family traditions and ignoring her husband’s. In all her years of keeping the traditions alive that her family had regarding Thanksgiving and Christmas foods/traditions, she had completely forgotten to find out and appreciate those from her husband. Her mother-in-law gave her a collection of recipes for traditional holiday foods from her husband’s family history. Then he made Danish pancakes from a favorite recipe. She failed to show appreciation for any of this.

Here is more of the story:

Last Thanksgiving a small menu detail finally opened my eyes to all that I’d been missing. Allen suggested getting root beer to drink because that’s what his family always had with their turkey dinner. I dismissed it, declaring that my family drank water with our Thanksgiving meal. Suddenly, I became painfully aware of my rudeness. I realized I’d been so intent on my family traditions that I had completely ignored Allen’s family traditions.


How did the writer of this story change this situation so that her children learned of her husband’s family traditions? Read the rest of the story here.

I love the smell of homemade bread, and I love that the author figured out that bread symbolizes not just love, but the mixture of two cultures: her husband’s and hers. Whenever I smell my homemade bread baking, I’m going to think of this story.  For all the romanticism of this story, I have to admit that it definitely hit a sensitive nerve for me. This past week I finally finished watching the webinar of marriage coach Ramona Zabriskie. I highly recommend you go watch it if you haven’t already! In this webinar, and in her book, Wife for Life, Ramona teaches how you can have hope for a Grand Marriage, one full of true love, romance, intimacy, fidelity, dreams come true, and unity.

In the book, Ramona teaches the Laws of Attractions for interactions in marriage. One of these laws from Ramoni is appreciation. I realized that I have not been showing sufficient appreciation for my husband. I mishandled a particular incident a week ago which left him feeling totally, completely unappreciated. Oops. If I had just handled it differently, by using the phrase Ramona shares below, things would have gone soooo much better.

So don’t be like me! If something happens that you feel critical of, instead of saying anything that remotely hints at criticism, say, “Interesting…tell me more.”

So this Thanksgiving, and forever after,  remember to show gratitude and appreciation not just to God, but to those closest around you, your husband and children. Together, with gratitude and appreciation, we can make something much more beautiful than we can on our own!

(This post contains affiliate links. If you click on them and buy, I will get a commission from your purchase, which helps me to pay for the cost of running this blog. Your price remains the same.)

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