I’ll be honest with you: this year has kind of sucked.
Every New Year we say “This is gonna be OUR year!” And sometimes we’re right: 2009 was a good year. As was 2012.
But 2014 was not kind to us. But the silver lining – because I always have to look for the silver lining – was that I spent much of this year being actively thankful for specific things in my life. Because I had this idea that, if I spent too much time dwelling on the negative things, God and karma and the universe would say something like, “Guess you don’t care about all this good stuff then.” And it would be taken away.
So I’ve thought a lot this year about the people in my life, the ways I’m blessed, and the things I’m grateful for. And there are plenty of them. At the top of almost every list are my husband and my son, two people I couldn’t live without. There are my parents, who are consistently supportive and loving and who make the 3-hour drive from Lakeport to Pacifica over and over and over, just to hang out with us. Drew’s parents treat me like one of their own and I have literally ZERO crazy “in-laws” stories (and I know that other women out there have some crazy in-laws). There are my friends: the real-life ones who have put up with me for years, and my online mommy friends, all of whom are invaluable. I have a job I love, with people I love. I get to live by the ocean in a neighborhood and an apartment that I really, really like. (There’s even ample street parking.)
And on top of all of that, this year I’m also thankful that 2014 is almost over. Rather than ringing in this New Year by saying “I can’t BELIEVE it’s already 2015!” I’ll be saying, “Thank God. Now, bring on a fresh start.”
Just to make sure I don’t end on a downer, here are some really specific things I’m thankful for at this exact moment: My kid is napping, and he apparently knows who Elmo is, which surprised both Drew and me this morning. I made a German chocolate pecan pie for dessert tonight and while it looks a little, um, “homemade,” the filling part tastes good. We’re actually going to finish our Disney Project this year, which was a grand undertaking, and I’m proud of that. It’s a really pretty day right now…but I hear it’s going to rain all weekend, which would be really nice.
See? Still an optimist. Happy Thanksgiving.
Filed under Baby, Children, Drew, Endings, Family, Food, Friends, Holidays, Memoir, Nonfiction, Religion, Sentiment, Writing
New York Thanksgiving 2006: Drew, our then-roommate JP, and I were just going to forego Thanksgiving entirely, until about 2pm when we decided that was nuts, and we ran to the closest grocery store (which closed at like 3pm) to assemble a makeshift Thanksgiving feast. The oven in our tiny Brooklyn apartment didn’t work, so we only bought things that we could cook on the stovetop or in the microwave. Drew thinks it was kind of sad, but I think it was just a mess. We’d only been in New York for like 3 months, and we just hadn’t gotten our sea legs yet.
New York Thanksgiving 2007: My parents came out, and we drove to their friends’ place in New Jersey. Apparently I still didn’t have my sea legs, as I rented a car from a place in Hoboken, and we had to go pick it up the day before, and then on Thanksgiving morning we tried to drive through Manhattan. Idiotic. I would do it so differently if I were doing it again.
New York Thanksgiving 2008: What are a bunch of crazy kids in their mid-20s to do, living in the Big Apple, three thousand miles away from their families? Have the franciest Thanksgiving of them all, of course! Thanksgiving 2008 started with us getting up early to start cooking, and start drinking while were at it. I believe Drew and I ran out of wine and had to walk down to the liquor store to buy more, and we got there before it even opened, and kind of hung around outside for awhile. CLASSY. Despite being completely inebriated by 10am, we put together quite a spread for six people. I have very fond memories of drunk Thanksgiving. (Not that I could handle that these days.)
That’s our door! And the elevator! And Erin excited that Joe is arriving.
Checking the turkey – look at our weird kitchen.
All three Chicago posters were Thanksgiving-ized. That’s some Disney level decorating.
A pilgrim (Drew) and an Indian (Joe) at the first Thanksgiving
Lots of food. Lots of wine.
Happy Thanksgiving 2013! Make some memories, so that 5 years from now you can TBT this Thanksgiving.
Baby B’s first thanksgiving! He’s thankful for his Lion King mobile. And so are we, because he loves it and will watch it happily and smile and dance. This allows me to brush my teeth and put in my contacts on the days when Drew is at work.
My brother and his wife weren’t able to fly out from Denver, so I’m thankful that my parents came down and we had dinner with Drew’s family, and it was really fun.
B was super fussy all day (growth spurt?) (they’re all growth spurts) so I’m thankful that everyone was easygoing about all the crying, and eager to try to hold him and calm him down, but understanding when I just had to go in other room and feed him. I’m also thankful that he’s strong and healthy and altogether a normal little boy. (I’m even thankful for the crying.)
Drew held him throughout dinner, and we were both kind of up and down with him, so neither of us gorged in that traditional, Thanksgiving dinner way. I’m thankful for that, in itself. But I’m also thankful that we got lots of leftovers to bring home, so we can eventually get our fill of turkey, stuffing, gravy, and all the rest.
I’m thankful that B has two sets of awesome grandparents who love him and are excited to watch him grow up. I’m thankful that those two sets of grandparents get along with each other.
Last year I was being deliberately optimistic about not being pregnant yet, and I was counting my blessings, and all that. I’m really thankful that this year I don’t have to twist the situation to shed it in a positive light.
Most of all this year I’m thankful for my two boys – for the one I chose and for the one who then (finally!) chose us.
Filed under Awesome, Baby, Beginnings, Children, Drew, Family, Friends, Holidays, Love, Memoir, Parents, Religion, Sentiment
Filed under Awesome, Books, Dreams, Drew, Family, Friends, Love, Memoir, Sentiment, Theatre, Work, Writing