Thursday, November 26, 2009

Listen and be grateful

Happy Thanksgiving.

Here is Will’s depiction of an early Thanksgiving celebrant, with loincloth slightly displaced, using fish to fertilize the soil and preparing to harvest some corn.

As long as you're pausing to feel real gratitude for your loved ones today, why not preserve some of their stories, their voices, their personalities, their quirks this weekend. Tomorrow is the “National Day of Listening,” a StoryCorps project that encourages people across the country to set aside an hour to record a conversation with someone important to them. You can go to the web site to participate officially and get guidance in generating questions if you choose.

So while you’re with friends and family, take a moment to break out a recording device and record some stories from older family members or some singing and talking by the children in the family who will one day marvel at their own little voice from long ago. I'm hoping to capture Owen singing Baby Beluga and Will singing the chorus from "Wagon Wheel," as they are both so often inclined to do. Maybe they'll tell me a story too.

Here's a sweet audio treasure, recorded in advance of the National Day of Listening, by NPR's Scott Simon as he talks with his 6-year-old adopted daughter about the story of her adoption and the making of their family. It's a story they tell together often, he says, and it grows richer as his two adopted daughters grow older.

If you’re reading this late, no matter. Shouldn't every day be a day of listening?

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