“What I am Thankful For…”

IMG_0749When the Dude was the little dude, every Thanksgiving I’d get a heartfelt letter scrawled on ivory handwriting paper. The missive was accompanied by a colorful turkey made from his handprint, a pilgrim or two, a tank, Dustin Pedroia, and sharks chasing Peyton Manning in open water.

Reading over prior year’s “thankfuls” I was struck with how little he’s changed. Although he might have a few new items to add to his list, the core is largely the same.

First  is the expected–my family, a house, my cats, decent food. “Decent” food? Really? It must be because I made him eat vegetables.

Next comes the really important stuff. I know it’s important because every word is spelled correctly; The Red Sox, The Patriots, Dustin Pedroia and Tom Brady, Star Wars, and Macaroni and Cheese, but only the orange kind, not the stuff Mom makes with four artisan cheeses. That version is merely “decent.”

Third, we get to the kiss-up phase, where he says whatever he thinks the teacher wants to hear. My country, the galaxy, freedom and liberty, and English. At least I think it says English.

The end is always the same. I’m thankful for Christmas. In his minimalist period, Christmas was the only thing he was thankful for.

My list is pretty short; family, friends, music, words, NPR and my Roomba. Oh–and my cappuccino machine. I’m a simple gal with simple needs.

I don’t get the Dude’s thankful letters any more, so I would have to guess at what he’d include. Frappuccinos and a full tank of gas (provided by someone other than him), Call of Duty, college acceptance letters, his “bros”, streaming television, doughnuts and Saturday.  The Red Sox and the Patriots. His handprint would take up the entire page. He wouldn’t include the tank, but Peyton Manning being devoured by sharks might still make the cut.

I have to wonder what he’ll be thankful for next year, when he’s been away at college for three months. I’m thinking he may be more appreciative of my “decent” cooking. I’ve never served up hot chili Fritos, not even once. Personally, I’ll be thankful to have him home, leaving his dirty socks in incomprehensible locations and interrupting my writing to discuss the baseball trades and the Pats Superbowl prospects. And my cappuccino machine. Some things never change.

 

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The other stuff I’m thankful for

My life is pretty blessed. I’m humbled by thankfulness every day. I’ll be doing something ordinary and BAM! All I can think is,  This. is. so. awesome.

So, I’m thankful for my family and my health and my home and my friends, blah blah blah. Can we just assume that? I don’t want anyone to say I left them out. Today, however, I want to mention some of the other stuff I’m grateful for.

I’m thankful for glasses cleaner. Even though I don’t use it as much as I need to. After I do, however, the world seems so much clearer to me.

I’m thankful that my son isn’t hacked about my writing. I’m thankful he doesn’t read my writing. He’s thankful his friends don’t know I’m a writer. They think I run a cafe.

I’m thankful for the health food store down the street. Who thought drinking green stuff would feel so good? I might actually stop eating like a twelve-year-old. Not a moment too soon. I’m sure I’m on the AARP watchlist.

I’m thankful my son isn’t on Facebook. If he’s anything like me, he’d get even less done than he already does.

I’m thankful for hot showers and great smelling shower gel. I’m a total sucker for that stuff.

I’m thankful for Red Infeld strings. They make my violin sound better despite my personal flaws. It’s sort of like musical Spanx.

I’m thankful my neighbors don’t see my husband running down the street barefoot at 4:30 a.m. with a headlamp. I’m thankful he does it, however, because he’s looking fine.

I’m thankful for Wordsmith Studios. They’ve totally changed my experience that writers are cranky loners who think everyone’s writing sucks–except theirs, of course. Before I met them, I was the only writer I knew.

I’m thankful for the Katie’s Ladies. We’re going to need a bigger table soon.

I’m thankful for all of the people who read this blog. You rock. Have a great holiday.

J. B. Everett