Confession time. Thanksgiving has always been my least favorite -- I'd go so far as to way most dreaded --holiday (apart from Valentine's Day in my many Valentine-less years). For one thing, I went to a high school with a lousy football team and a college that celebrates Homecoming during lacrosse season. The Colts fled Baltimore in the dead of night when I was in eighth grade, and then I moved to Rams-less L.A. In short... I am not a football fan. I am a fan of eating, but not of cooking, cleaning, or calories. (And Carmela probably knows the Italian tradition of serving a complete turkey dinner in addition to a pasta feast!) One of my favorite Thanksgivings ever was spent alone, under a quilt, with a book.
However, now I have kids and no option to opt out (or even eat out). My five-year-old is engaged in a daily countdown, and each day she has added at least three decorations to our dining room. The vegetarian/vegan portion of the menu is mostly complete, the wheelchair ramp is at the ready for my father (shh -- we won't tell him how steep it is!), and the steam-in-bag vegetables are safely ensconced in the freezer.
This week my kids have the craziest school schedule ever -- early dismisssal, late start, days off... Can I say how thankful I am for kind neighbors? I took my daughter yesterday to the local library to stock up for our week of school-lite. I think 30 books and movies might get us through the week. (Half of them, I must confess, are for me.)
My kids have been talking a lot about what they're grateful for -- family, friends, toys, green paint (long story). As for me, I would add teachers, warmth, comfort, joy, and one more important thing. A major criterion (confession #2) that drew me to the writing life was the blessed solitude of it all. No conference calls, no office politics, no outsized egos. Well, solitude is grand, but sometimes community is even better. Thank YOU, and Happy Thanksgiving to all!
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