Thankful for...

so, so very much.

We have a Thanksgiving tradition that started about 6 years ago, when I first started at WT, and was on the audition tour right up until Turkey Day. (It's a great tradition - why mess with it now that we end the tour early, amiright?) I do some kind of exercise in the AM: gym or a run around the neighborhood. (Justification for second helpings of stuffing. Obviously.) A dog walk, a needed shower, and then it's Game On in the kitchen. Always a turkey breast (because there are just 2 of us, don't want to be eating turkey for a whole month!), always stuffing, always mashed taters, always gravy. Veggies rotate between squash and beans and, sometimes, both. I turn the music up and chop/stir/emulsify/whisk/taste/dance for several hours, while the animals watch on with curiosity/befuddlement/abject horror. (Elaine Bennis has nothing on my dance moves!) We eat between 2 and 3pm, often in our pajamas, and then spend the rest of the afternoon reading, watching football, taking leisurely walks around the neighborhood.

Today's meal was heavy on the butter (YES.), and I still have more stuffing leftover than braincells in my head. (Which is actually OK...I'm all for leftover stuffing, and now that I'm blonde I don't really need those extra brain cells anyway.) But it was a success: nothing burnt, nothing undercooked, an embarrassment of culinary riches to tuck away in the fridge for the week ahead and a perfect excuse to make turkey stock.

I have a comfortable life. It's not perfect, but I'm safe and sheltered and have more than sufficient. There are things that I worry about simply because I have the *luxury* to worry about the big picture, rather than trying to figure out how to feed myself or my family, where or how to live. I have a house that keeps me warm in the winter and cool in the summer. My hubs is a good man, my pets are adorable (or, in the case of the cat, an adorable douchebag.), my family is wonderfully weird, my friends are warm and generous - often to a fault.

I am one lucky, lucky girl.

It's difficult to pin down gratitude. I find that, when things are good I don't take time to be really present and count my blessings. When things are bad it seems like the blessings are so scarce. The reality is in between somewhere, skating the line between Pollyanna and Eeyore.

But were I able to only count one blessing, over and over again? Maybe it would be my health, my job, something intrinsic to my being. I think, however, my biggest blessing is the wealth of people that surround me:

Old friends (many of whom I've been able to spend serious time with this year) who are deeply known to me, even after decades apart, after a simple hug.
New friends who have changed the way that I see the world and myself.

These wonderful folks? Have become an intrinsic part of who I am. And I am better, so very much better, for knowing them.

I am loved. And for that? I am immensely grateful.


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