Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Giving of Thanks

Irving Berlin wrote it, Bing Crosby sang it, and I agree: I've got plenty to be thankful for. I might not be able to buy everything I need at the five-and-dime, but I do have what I need and then some. In the spirit of the holiday (ignoring the possible historical anecdotes about Pilgrims and Indians), I'd like to list a few of the things that I'm thankful for.

My husband. He tops the list as the family I see most often, and the person who has supported me the most during hectic moving house, hectic wedding planning, overwhelming dissertation writing and job searching, and all the difficult patches of transitioning to life in a new country. Not to mention all the times he insists on doing everything for me when he's home: getting me things, putting things away, washing dishes, tidying the leftovers. He's amazing.

My family. My awesome, talented, and extremely witty (and pretty!) little sister off at our good ol' Mother So Dear...WFU. The other half of the Vulcan Mind Meld that is the sum of our endless pop-culture references, inside jokes, and intellectual snobbery; my Maid of Honour, and the only person who has been my friend her entire life. My mom and dad and their respective Other Halves. My parents deserve a lot of credit (or blame, depending on how you look at it!) for the woman I am and that I'm becoming. I hope the way I turn out earns them more credit than blame. My mom and dad especially have taught me a lot, but I owe them the most for my testimony of Christ and the importance of family in my life.

My friends. Though there are too many to name, the few who stick out to me at the moment aren't a third of the full list of people whose friendship I enjoy and appreciate. Actually, most of these people have probably been a better friend to me than I've been to them! Christina, Favourite, Alicia, Lauren, Danielle, Clinton, Rachel J., Elizabeth G., Krystle K., & Krystle O.

Our flat! As much as I've bemoaned the orange and purple accent walls, hideous statuettes, glued-on decorations, and copious vases - all with good reason, I might add - this has been a great place to spend the first bits of life as a married couple. I didn't realise how much I missed having a dishwasher until we moved in here! And I can only imagine how spoiled I've been by having an en suite bathroom...and not having to turn the heat on all autumn or winter! It's Thanksgiving and our heat still isn't on! How awesome is that? I submit to you: very awesome.

The hot water bottle I got from my mother-in-law at Christmas last year. At least twice this season it's saved me from freezing to death in an office above an 18th-century bakehouse down at Jane Austen's House in Chawton. There were days where I seriously felt one hot water bottle away from hypothermia or frostbite. You don't know the meaning of cold until it's so cold you consider holding the urge to pee for three hours rather than running to the un-heated loo down the stairs. I have a new-found admiration for Eskimos...I don't know how they do it. ;-)

My Fanny Farmer Cookbook; a birthday present from my momma that has helped me make pumpkin and apple pies, buttermilk biscuits, and blueberry muffins and pancakes galore. That book supplied a large number of the recipes of my childhood and so it's a piece of home.

The drive to work where I can crank up the volume on the car stereo and sing as loudly and obnoxiously in a harmony of thirds as I so choose. No neighbours to annoy with my joyful noise, whether it's singing to Wir Sind Helden, John Mayer, or Josh Groban and the MoTab.

Legally dubious internet TV sites that let me keep up with my 3 favourite TV shows - Glee, Grey's Anatomy, and Private Practice.

Finally, out of all the other things I can mention, I'm thankful for Thanksgiving. For the excuse to make an enormously unnecessary amount of food - all of it tasty - and lounge around in the contented bliss of a full stomach and a tryptophan overload. I also love that Thanksgiving marks the time from when it is no longer a socially dubious practise to put up a Christmas tree. It's time to deck the halls, deck the walls, and deck your kids and your wife and your husband, because it's Christmas: we're decorating everything up in here.

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