Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Preparation for Thanksgiving

I didn't take part in this year's Facebook challenge to list one thing every day in the month of November that I'm thankful for. It's not that I'm not thankful. It's more that I have poor followthrough.

In fact, by the time I finish this blog post, I will have gone off on at least two tangential google searches, gotten a drink of something, and certainly used the bathroom. And maybe sent an email or two. It's a marvel I get anything done in life, really.

See, by the time I got to THIS paragraph, I'd already gone off to find a recipe for mashed sweet potatoes. I think I've narrowed it down to ones with maple syrup instead of chipotles. I think I'm in charge of kid-friendly side dishes, and chipotles aren't always kid-friendly... Oooh, I just found a recipe with cardamom and orange liquor. That looks interesting too...

ANYWAY, my point was that I'd have more luck listing things that I'm thankful for if I actually sat down to do it all in one sitting. So, in not-a-consistently-hierarchical order, here's the beginning of my list. 

I'm thankful for:

  1. A faith that provides hope, comfort, joy, and an internal compass to guide me through life's adventures and challenges.
  2. A family that supports me, encourages me, challenges me, and gives me new reasons to be thankful every day.
  3. An education that gave me bankable work skills, challenged my view of the world, and taught me to always keep my eyes and mind open to new views.
  4. A vocation that challenges me emotionally, creatively, and sometimes intellectually. And allows me to help people. 
  5. Enough confidence in myself as a clinician that I can rejoice when patients rejoice, and cry when patients cry. 
  6. A group of friends that have become family.
  7. A handsome, brilliant, and all-around-good husband.
  8. Two adorable, entertaining, and loveable children. Most of the time.
  9. A local Mommy community to answer questions and reassure me that I'm not completely insane. Most of the time.
  10. The YMCA gym with babysitting, for when I am going insane.
  11. Flannel sheets.
  12. A down-filled duvet.
  13. Forced air heat.
  14. Heated tile bathroom floor.
  15. Down coat.
  16. Cashmere scarf.
  17. Giant warm mittens. (can you tell it's gotten chilly here lately?)
  18. A comfortable home that has room to grow into. This is not a common thing in our city.
  19. A yard, with room for a garden.
  20. A workplace within walking distance.
  21. Another workplace that allows me to walk to a train through one of the most beautiful urban gardens in the world.
  22. A safe neighborhood in a usually-safe city.
  23. Guaranteed education for my girls.
  24. Dogs. 
  25. A preschool that provides excellent care and enrichment for my girls, and supports their growing faith lives.
  26. Sunsets over our back yard.
  27. A patio to eat on in the summer and watch the sunsets.
  28. Woods behind our house that give shelter to deer, coyotes, foxes, and other fauna.
  29. Rapid internet access to any information we need to find. Like sweet potato recipes.
  30. The ability to walk to places, like parks, stores, libraries, and restaurants.
  31. Freedom.
  32. Dansko clogs. In marbled burgundy patent leather.
  33. Plenty of weather-appropriate clothing for the girls and us.
  34. Friends who hand a lot of it down to us.
  35. An in-unit washer and dryer to keep it all clean. 
  36. A spare bedroom to pile it all up in until I can fold and sort it all.
  37. A palate that was expanded by persistent parents, travel, and adventurous friends and husband.
  38. Cookbooks.
  39. Booze.
  40. Chocolate.
  41. Chocolate-flavored booze.
I could keep going and going. 
The challenge is to find something to be thankful for every day, not just at Thanksgiving, and not just in November. But November is a nice opportunity to sit down and focus on the many things for which we can give thanks.

So tomorrow, as I'm trying my hand at pumpkin empanadas, I will give thanks for pumpkin. And a functional kitchen. And family who taught me to appreciate home-made things. And... may the list go on and on.

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