There are many things I’m personally thankful for, and in particular, a caring parent who raised three rambunctious boys into good caring adults.

Our Mom was a single parent, and back in the ’50s and ‘60s, there was a certain stigma to being from a one-parent household in the South. But, looking back, I think she did a fantastic job of keeping us out of trouble. She worked full time and still ran the household with determination. She taught all three of us how to cook, clean, make a bed, run a washing machine and dryer, and cook and make minor repairs to our clothing. For example, if you got a hole in your sock in our house, you got the sewing basket and fixed it yourself! “Come on, what are you waiting for? Get busy!” She would often push.

When I was in college, I was amazed at how many of my university classmates didn’t even know how to boil an egg, much less cook dinner, shop for groceries, wash clothes, or accomplish simple mending chores. I didn’t know how good of a “life coach” I had while growing up.

Mom supported our interests in the school band, baseball Little League teams, and more. If the church doors were open for a service, we were there. Our Mom kept us so busy; there simply wasn’t any time to get into trouble. Later as teens, we all had part-time jobs to earn spending money.

I recently had a phone call with one of my old high school chums and learned about some misfortune of another family with three boys in our old neighborhood. Unfortunately, the news was not good, as all three had fallen in with “the bad kids,” and none of them were alive today.

I recognized my thankfulness at that moment. Our Mom who cared enough to make sure we would turn out to be good men. And for that, I am truly THANKFUL. Things you are thankful for, are what make you, you!