November 2011 (Scroll for November 2023)
I will be hosting Thanksgiving this year and I love to do it. It makes it easy when you have a family that helps by bringing their favorite side dishes, wine, desserts, and anything else you request! We spend hours talking, eating, and drinking. There are teenagers to toddlers all around. We extend the table to accommodate everyone. It’s not pretty, but who cares? Neither is life. We are so very blessed. I’ve been reading Martha Beck’s books recently since seeing her in person a few weeks ago. I’m also reading The Joy Diet and it asks you to list 20 things that you are grateful for, which is something I try to do regularly. I’m going to ask my kids to do this on Thanksgiving morning and then put it away to bring out someday in the future. So, this Thanksgiving I’m grateful for:
- My family and My health. I have to remind myself this is not a given!
- My amazing friends, each one giving me something different and so very necessary. The women I’ve become friends with over the years are remarkable.
- Sadness & disappointments & frustrations, because what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.
- Quiet moments & time alone, especially Monday morning when the last person leaves the house. No offense!
- A book you can’t put down
- The beach & ocean, gives me perspective, peace and it just smells good
- Wine!!! This is worth saying again… WINE!!!
- Cooking in my kitchen with Gene … and wine! 🙂
- Change & Fear. It keeps us growing. Feel the fear and do it anyway!
- Photographs & Home Videos
- Travel, Anywhere. Anytime. I’m there!
- A great movie – one that makes me cry, even better!
- My Mac
- Candles, a big soft blanket, Bequet caramels, honey crisp apples, La Colombe coffee, a pedicure with a friend, a bear hug, fresh cut flowers, chocolate chip cookies right out of the oven, a good night’s sleep, date night and all the other pleasures that may seem mundane but make life worth living
- For you! For reading this newsletter and giving your comments and support. It keeps us going…
- Time off to recharge!
A few years back, my business partner, next-door neighbor, and close friend, Laura, went through some old newsletters and gathered up all the essays I had written. I can’t thank her enough for that! I absolutely love going through them and reading them again. It’s like having a diary of my adult life, but from a different perspective. The essay above from 2011 made me realize that even after twelve years, I’m pretty much the same person. Sure, I may have gained a few pounds and some gray hairs, but I’ve also gained more gratitude.
This year, I’m hosting Thanksgiving, and it will be almost the same crew of fourteen people around the table as we had in 2011. I can’t express how grateful I am for that. My son will come home from college, and my daughter will bring her boyfriend along. We’ll all spend hours talking, sharing stories, eating, and drinking. We’ll have to extend the table to squeeze together. It may not be perfect, but no one really cares because what matters is that we’re all together. After twelve years, I’ve given up on the idea of perfection and learned to appreciate the beauty of imperfection. I looked back at the list of things I was grateful for in 2011 and remain deeply thankful.
During these tumultuous times, as I witness the heart-wrenching struggles unfolding in various corners of the world, I am acutely aware of just how fortunate I am. Recently, I had the opportunity to meet a Ukrainian refugee couple along with their two young boys, aged 4 and 5, who have been living in our area for two weeks. Their lives were abruptly turned upside down, and they arrived here with only four suitcases filled with clothes and no other possessions. They are essentially starting from scratch. When I offered them a few items, their gratitude was overwhelming.
As Thanksgiving approaches, and indeed every day, I will take stock of the countless blessings that grace my life and won’t take them for granted.
A grateful heart,