It's time to start asking everyone, What are you doing for Thanksgiving? Isn't that what we usually work into our conversations this month?

I started thinking about why I ask that question. Is it because I expect that everyone I meet has exciting plans full of loving family get-togethers and delicious traditional meals, and I'm anxious to hear their stories?

Or, is it because I want to make sure that no one is going to spend the holiday alone and lonely?

I've been there. I've spent Thanksgiving days alone or as a couple eating out at a regular restaurant serving ho-hum turkey and cranberry sauce.

No matter how I spin it, eating alone on Thanksgiving Day screams out to me that I need more family and friends around me.

I bemoan the fact that I should have spent the entire year cultivating friendships and family who might make an extra effort to spend time together. If family is too far away, I could have found friends to be my chosen family.

Too late now? No.

There are simply too many people around me who may be alone on Thanksgiving Day. This year, I choose them. If anyone answers my November question with something like, Nothing different, I'm going to invite them to spend Thanksgiving Day with me. 

It'll be another of life's adventures. I don't know what'll happen. Maybe they'll say no, maybe yes. But, what's the worst that can happen? I'll spend a few hours and probably end up with a new friend. I'm not offering great food or a big beautiful house or a formal meal. It'll probably be potluck and eat off a paper plate on your lap. But none of us will be alone. 

When I read that, in our society, loneliness is killing us, I realized that I could do my small part in changing that.

It's not a matter of giving someone a Thanksgiving turkey. It's a gesture of companionship.
I Welcome Your Comments

In October, I finished the book I've been working on for five years--off and on, actually. It's a memoir about an aspect of my life dealing with polio and it's after effects. Many of you probably don't know that I had polio as a teenager or that it's after effects have hit me rather hard since 2000. 

When I realized that I'm dealing with a very common health situation, I began to think that telling my story may help someone else cope. I think it's a fair guess to say that most people over 50 are managing symptoms of some sort of chronic health problem--problems we cannot see by looking at them. I call them "invisible illnesses."

I battled with myself about putting this book out there. Is it vain? Or, could it be a help to someone? Well, it's done. And, I'm looking for five volunteer readers to give me feedback. If you'd like to be--or are willing to be--one of those readers, email me.
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Think About It

Maybe ever'body in the whole damn world is scared of each other.

John Steinbeck
Of Mice and Men

I don't like to spend my time shopping and trying on clothes because I usually come home empty handed and discouraged, thinking that designers and manufacturers don't know that baby boomers don't wear the same styles as millennials.

So I have signed up for a personal stylist on the Internet's STITCH FIX. My stylist will pick out my clothes and send them to me to try--based on the sizes, prices, and preferences I've told her. If I like it, I buy. If not, I don't. Free shipping both ways. We'll see . . . Always an optimist!

It's an Adventure
I'm honored to be speaking at the Other Lifelong Learning Institute's monthly luncheon on Nov. 17 at 11:30 at Bordino's in Fayetteville. Join us by responding at

51% of Americans have some kind of disability or know someone who does.


Check out my book on what 100 women have to say about the realities and adjustments to aging. 

When she was thirty-five
I thought her jokes were corny.
She worked from eight till six and came home
And made me dresses and ironed my father's work clothes.
I hated her angry silent spells
When she went for days without speaking.
I looked to her for love. I needed her affection.
It made me mad that she was unhappy.
Today I'm thirty-five.
Jim is out of town and I had to work late at the office.
I’m exhausted and depressed.
Mother called to talk of plants and relatives
And to tell me that she loves me.
I wondered
Who called her
When she was thirty-five.
Copyright © 2016.   All rights reserved.

Alice French

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Alice French · 1301 Timber Top Circle · Rogers, AR 72756 · USA

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