Nov 11, 2015

November: An Invitation to Gratitude {Homefires}

Mom on her own during Dad's 1958 tour of duty in Korea.

November 11: An Invitation to Gratitude {Homefires}

“Keep the homefires burning” historically meant
women tasked with keeping the embers hot and the pot cooking until the men return.

Military families blow kisses and wave final good-byes.
Then, tears still falling, with all the strength they can muster,
gather up the children to return home 
to an all too quiet house, to a table with an empty place,
to the chair vacant of its usual lounger, 
to the bed missing the other half,
to the closet partially empty, 
to singlehandedly keep life going 
for long months or years.

They keep the heat on, the bills paid, the lawn mowed, the larder filled, food on the stove, give every bath and read books followed by bedtime prayers, every night. No one comes home at the end of the day, or on the weekend or the holidays, to offer a hand or a cherished word.

In my childhood a world map hung over the stereo in our home and we learned the geography of far east nations, the distant locals of our father and his fellow pilots and soldiers. 
Mom was a petite girl, a provincial small town girl of her era, yet as an officer’s wife she grew to become the gale force, the CEO and master organizer with steely strength born of necessity that singlehandedly kept six kids feed, clothed, carpooled, and motivated on their individual paths while maintaining a household, continuously writing letters overseas, all under the constant filmed coverage of war on the evening news. 

Extend gratitude to the nation’s military families. 
Our nation is protected from the creeping tide of war
by their loved ones,
and their lives are forever changed.
*   *   *

Additional Posts in An Invitation to Gratitude Series:
Day 1 Attentive Listening
Day 2 Boundless love
Day 3 Time Away
Day 4 New Roads
Day 5 Legacy
Day 6 Indian Summer
Day 7 Transforming Power of Gratitude

Linking with the Weekend Whispers, Still Saturday, Coffee for the Heart, and Tell His Story. 

Click on the buttons below to read posts by these communities of faith filled writers.


  1. What a great post on Veteran's Day! Thank you for the reminder to voice my thanks for all they sacrifice!

    1. To voice your gratitude would mean so much. Appreciate your visit here.

  2. We have a world map hanging on the wall in the boys bedroom. They lay in bed and imagine what other places are like.

    1. Maps are always a wonderful addition to a child's environment. The world becomes yours.

  3. This is a wonderful tribute for Veteran's Day.

    1. Thank you. I think those who wait must not be forgotten.

  4. Such heart in this tribute! Thank you for your family's service!

  5. What a beautiful tribute! Hope you're having a great week!