Me and the stray dogs waited for the door to open. Scraps would fly in our direction. We just had to be patient. We were all hungry all the time. The year was 1968 and I just turned twenty-four years old. I listened for the creek of the door. We heard it. The Indian lady would get in trouble if she got caught. She was very traditional. But she was kind to me. Don’t tell she whispered. Winter 1969 I was cold, lonely and miserable. Hunger was my constant companion. The Navajo Reservation was vast. The family’s huddled in their hogans near the fire. I stood still and sniffed the air. I smelled food. I followed my nose. Soon a home came into view. I was very shy but my hunger was stronger. I knocked on the small wooden door. I heard a word in Navajo that meant “come in”. I ducked down and entered. A group of natives sat around a cast iron pot. They used their fingers to scoop up fried potatoes. It smelled so good. I knew I should stand in the shadows and watch. When I saw a slight movement. Two people moved apart. That was my signal that I was welcome to sit with them. I kept my eyes cast down to show respect. I waited my turn to gather a few pieces of food. Toddlers and babies sat on mother’s and grandmother’s lap. The food was chewed then placed in their mouths. I felt so accepted. I felt cared for. Somehow, I knew these people would care for me in their own way. Forward Fast – 2018 and Holidays are near. The toddlers of long ago are now teachers and school bus drivers on the reservation. Some are nurses and some young men and women are police. Others entered the military. I am still among them. We talk, we laugh, we cry tears of joy when we think of the past that brought us together. These are my people. They fed me when I was hungry. They cried with me at losses in my life. And they now rejoice with me because my daughter and I work together bringing gifts and supplies. Third and Fourth generations of Navajos are my family. Fifty years of my life and I can truly say God is Good and He had a plan when I didn’t. Speaking of Plans, can you please fit us into your Holiday Plans with Turkey’s and Gifts for our Indian Children? You can shop and ship or we can do it in your name. Together we can give a little back when they Gave Me so Much!