Indian Giver, Seriously?

When I attended a small 3 room country school in rural Minnesota (cloak room, classroom & kitchen), I recall one time when we students put on a program for the parents with the autumn/Thanksgiving theme. I still have an old photo of me in an Indian garb.  I was more enamored with the Indians than the Pilgrims, perhaps because I saw the Indians as “givers” and the Pilgrims as “takers”.  Maybe it was because I’d heard stories about my great-grandmother who was 100% Sioux on my Mom’s side and also some Indian blood on my Dad’s side.  At home and school I quickly learned it was really derogatory to call anyone an “Indian Giver”.  In thinking of Thanksgiving and all we have to be thankful for, Jerry and I started talking about who we should invite to share in our turkey and all the fixin’s, and it brought to mind the time we invited a homeless couple to join us for Christmas.  OK, they were anything but homeless, but their flight had been cancelled at the last minute because of bad weather, so they were going to be spending that day alone.  We really didn’t  know them and they weren’t in our circle of friends, but one of the couples sharing the holiday meal with us asked if we could include that couple.  Of course, we said yes as I believe any of you would have.

As is typical of our culture, folks generally bring a hostess gift of some type.  Not sayin’ we expect it, but when it happens it’s always a nice little treat.  Well, this last minute couple walked in bearing a lovely little Christmas plate with about 8 or 10 chocolate covered strawberries.  Oh be still my heart! I LOVE those things!!!  It was tempting to put them in an obscure location, but we let this delectable delight join the table of pies and other yummy treats.  By the time we were ready to partake of dessert, we were all moaning and groaning from stuffing ourselves with stuffing, turkey, and smashed potatoes!  Somehow all 12 or so of us managed to enjoy desserts while very few of the chocolate strawberries were consumed.  That was perfectly fine with me because I knew later that night or the next day there would be a hallelujah time of rejoicing with those treats and a nice cuppa decaf or hot chocolate. I suppose I would HAVE TO SHARE with Jerry.

I’m really not taking a risk by telling this story because we’ve only seen those people once in the 7 years since this happened.  We’ve never been invited to their home, and they don’t know about my blog.  I’m just here to tell you that I can never ever see a chocolate covered strawberry without thinking of that lady who when the gathering was breaking up, waltzed into the kitchen, picked up the cute little plate with the remaining strawberries, thanked us for the lovely meal, and trotted out the door!!! “NO, no, no”, I wanted to scream! But I pouted and said nothing. Sigh…….  Alright, I’ll concede I’m sounding childish and petty and shouldn’t even be sharing this, but I heard someone else call someone an “Indian giver” recently, and this old memory came flooding back to mind.  It prompted me to look up the meaning and to write about this truly funny memory.  Seriously?  Yes, seriously!!!!!!  I may be part Indian (and proud of it) but hope to never be an “Indian giver”.  Now on a very serious note, I am saying “listen up white folks, give me back my land and those strawberries and no one will be scalped!!!!”

Have a blessed and chocolate strawberry filled Thanksgiving; and with me in learning to laugh at those memories that at the time seemed so major. Don’t hold grudges, pick your battles, keep things in perspective and try not to eat too much. A  quote by Dorothy Sayers, “It is the great curse of gluttony that it ends by destroying all sense of the precious, the unique,  the irreplaceable.” Sending big love to all!!!!!





  1. Peggy Fowler

    Dear old roomie
    This was super! What a good one!!! Brought SO many good chuckles! (And I needed them today. I’m recuperating from a total knee replacement on November 2nd! ). Anyway, you write the best stuff; I think you should compile them into a little book and offer it for sale. I’d buy a copy. Love to you and Jerry from Peg and Don Fowler

  2. Diane

    It was your best so far. I laugh and cried because your words touched my heart. We hope you and yours have a Blessed Thanksgiving and as we prepare for the reason of Christmas season know you are thought of often. We love you guys.

  3. Linda Johnson

    You have such a wonderful, wonderful way of expressing thoughts and, along the way, readers learn something unique. We also laugh!
    May you and Jerry have a blessed Thanksgiving ……be sure to add some chocolate covered strawberries. Love, Linda

  4. Anne Forsythe

    Thank you, Charlotte. Part two put a big smile on my face. I think we have all had this experience. It’s so true I’d we really really enjoy the goodies on the given plate; there is hope for the cook’s treat the next day. 😜
    You probably have heard glenn and I moved back to Chicago. It’s been a whirlwind the past four weeks. We had no idea the house would sell so quickly. My hope was that it wouldn’t sell until March. 😜
    Our cash buyers wanted a two week closing. I told glenn, impossible. They have to give us four or five weeks. We were sitting in our tiny apartment in south suburb of Chicago. We had two weeks! Glenn thought with help we could manage it. We did accomplish taking a 2100 sq ft house apart, donate, sell, throw out and give away soooo much and pack what we could bring to Chi town. Between you and I, I’ll never ever attempt again. After getting on a plane and flying back to Chicago, we sold, gave away and donated furniture and things in our tiny apartment in LaGrange.
    We rented a bigger apartment in Hyde Park Illinois near the museum of science and Industry. Unfortunate it’s been cold starting in mid October. I’m not whining but I can tell you, I miss Anthems weather.
    Being in such a tight time constraint, we weren’t even able to meet with all of our friends and say farewell. There was no time. We had two weeks and worked day and night.
    Our apartment is a work in progress. The scale of furniture we brought back isn’t the scale of furniture in model. We have more purging to do and yes I’ve had a couple of meltdowns including a good cry. I don’t know the outcome but I know we took action. We will be back for visits. Glenn promised we would get out of Chicago for short warm trips this winter.
    Family was biggest reason for move. My mom and dad are failing and I felt it important to be here along with my sisters to assist. I have had buyers remorse because it is another big change in our lives. We are both looking forward to more adventure and discovery. I enjoy your blog and miss all our Anthem Friends.
    Love, Anne.

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