Happy Thanksgiving – Finding Gratitude in the Unusual

The time of wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving is here again, and as always I have a long list of things for which I am more than grateful. 

In the past, I have offered thanks for my life as a farmer, for the people in my world and for the food on my table, and so much more. 

This year, I want to express my sincere thanks for something else that has become near and dear to me.

walking with chickens

My Reasons for a Happy Thanksgiving

This Farm Wife is eternally thankful for you.  It is because of you that I even have The Farm Wife website.  I cannot tell you how much your encouragement, comments and sharing mean to me.

It is also through this website that I was blessed with the opportunity to expand it into weekly columns in three local newspapers, with hopes of more in the future.

Through this website, I have been ‘introduced’ to some wonderful people who share my love of all things farming and simple living.  You have also taught me new thing, offered a new perspective on others, and shared with me some great websites where I can learn more and expand my abilities. 

 You have cried with me over the loss of an animal; laughed with me at their antics; encouraged me when I just wanted to throw my hands up and give in.  It is through you that I found the courage I lost to try again.

a person walking in the ocean at sunset towards an island

An Unusual Approach for a Happy Thanksgiving

In thinking about ways to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving this year, I came across something that truly resonated with me.

John Donne wrote a piece (Meditation XVII) that is, at least in part, well known.  “No man is an Island, entire of itself.”  We also know the last portion, “And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.” 

It is what comes between those well-known words that we may not know, but speaks loudly to me about the simple lifestyle we have chosen for ourselves.

“…every man is a piece of the Continent, a part of the main; if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friends or of thine own were; any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind;…” 

This piece may be an essay written by John Donne in 1624, but it has carried its meaning through time to land on my desk. My interpretation may not be what Mr. Donne intended, but I still think he would appreciate my reasoning.

Without my friends, my family, my neighbors, my readers, Paradise Plantation just wouldn’t be as wonderful a place to live.  To lose just one person in this wonderful group would mean to lose a piece of my heart – whether I have shared a real or virtual table with you.  You are what keeps me moving forward, and for that I am truly grateful.

Whether you follow me through the newspaper columns, on my website, or are my supporting neighbors, friends and family, I deeply and whole-heartedly thank God for you, and all the support and encouragement you have given me.  I also thank Him for giving me the gift of creativity, because it is only through Him that I can continue to do this. 

This Thanksgiving please know that you are loved and appreciated.  Thank you.  From the bottom of my heart. 

The Country Boy, the critters on the Plantation and I all wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Julie Murphree is a blogger, newspaper columnist, and speaker on all things ‘Living a Simple Life on the Farm’. She is the author of \\\'The Farm Wife – Living a Simple Life on the Farm. She and her husband have 60 acres in NW Louisiana where they actively work on living as sustainable as possible.


  1. Thank you, Gary. I couldn’t have done half of it without you. You are one of my biggest supporters! I hope you and Mrs. Ruth have a very blessed Thanksgiving, and you can be sure we are setting a virtual plate at our table for y’all! Eat hardy!

  2. Aw Sis! Thank you! I’m so glad at your success! Happy Thanksgiving!


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