Thankful List

1. Brussels Sprouts

2. My husband. Sans moustache. I hear it’s “Movember.” I support prostate cancer research and all, but I thank my lucky stars that my hubs declines to show his support of men’s health issues by growing a caterpillar on his upper lip.

3. Long walks with my pooch. They keep my brain from exploding, and how can you be anxious when you get to watch that lovely water and those lovely mountains every day?

November 3. It’s 7:32, I’ve eaten dinner, walked the dog, cleaned the kitchen, taken out the trash…and this bottle of cheap Washington red wine is tasting way better than the $8 I paid for it. I figured I better get to the thankfulness before I fell asleep on the couch.

4. Speaking of couches, I am thankful for mine. After two months of drifting, and then a month of getting settled, it is so comforting to snuggle up on a upholstered piece of furniture with a blanket and a dog.

5. Speaking of dogs, I have the best one. I mean, he’s hilariously smart and stupid at the same time. Today, as we were walking along the sidewalk along Lake Washington he barked every time he saw a rock sticking out of the water. I’m pretty sure he thought these partially submerged dark objects were animals. But he shows his teeth and smiles when I walk in the door, he sneezes when he’s happy, he knows my mom’s car, and he has a funny snarfy mouth.

6. Speaking of things we’re thankful for, let’s just get these out of the way:

  • My family. We are here, healthy and better than ever.  Enough said.
  • A roof over my head. A roof we can afford in a city we love. That’s quite something.
  • Food. This will be a recurring theme.
  • My health. I’m starting to finally get out of that I’m invincible stage…which sucks. I liked it better when I could mistreat my body in any number of ways one night and the next day run five miles. Hell, I miss the days when running five miles didn’t make my very bones hurt. And I am not that old.
  • My friends. Here, there, everywhere. When Brian and I started dating, he was shocked at the number of friends I’ve kept in close contact with all over the world, from all parts of my life.  I am a lucky lady to have so many good, generous, kind people in my life.

November 7

7. Days off. Together. Today: sleeping til 8. Breakfast. 2 hour walk in the rain. Soup. Brian is painting, I am writing. Wilco on the stereo. Wine. I love these.

8. My neighborhood: I am always the one searching for solidarity, for ways people connect. I love when a place does that. And I love when the place brings people of all different walks of life together. I love that my neighborhood has coffee shops and bakeries and wine bars, but I really, really love the fact that there are so many shades, so many languages, so many differences all in one place. I’ll take the drunks at the bus stop and the hookers on the corner if I can have the diversity, the multiculturalism and people who are all really proud to be a part of it.

9. The house of books. When I moved to Seattle in 2005 I got rid of almost half of my books. I have never regretted a decision like I did that one. This time neither of us got rid of much, and after years (me: 3, Brian: 10) of working in a bookstore, we have an impressive collection. I love looking around and seeing walls of books. That makes me feel at home.

November 10. The no bake cookie experiment.

10. Today I am thankful for peanut butter, manna of the gods, the substance that sustains me…and makes for the most wonderful healthy no bake cookies on the planet. No kidding, no exaggeration, I ate a peanut butter sandwich every day of my life until I was like 17. It is the food I’d take to a deserted island.

11. Mistakes. I was contemplating the “mistakes” I’ve made in my lifetime…perhaps they are more bad decisions or decisions made that weren’t made for the best reasons. You know, moves, haircuts, marriages. Whatever. Those major “mistakes” have shaped me to be the person I am today: I am braver, I stand taller, I think more deeply than I would have without that bad haircut, those sad relationships, that exhausting adventure.

November 11

12. Today I’m thankful for perspective. I was driving home, past the houses I can’t afford to buy dreaming of doing a job I don’t actually have and feeling sorry for myself. And then I got a call from my mom…my cousin was diagnosed with cervical cancer, and had a hysterectomy today. She’s seven years younger than I am. I got home and read happy birthday posts to a thirty-something mother of two. She died last year after a long battle with breast cancer. We all have our struggles, certainly. But this was a reminder that in the grand scheme of things, most struggles are minuscule.

November 14, 2011

13. Wine. See post.

14. Running and my ability to do so. Thanks, hip and knee for staying solid. I appreciate it.

November 15, 2011

15. I’m thankful for a husband who will cook, build things and walk the dog more than once while I’m working crazy hours. Because it’s really nice to come home to a clean, warm, smelly good house after 11 hour days.

16. My commute. Hah.

November 21, 2011–catching up

17. Public Radio. Specifically: most NPR. KEXP. This American Life. The Moth. Radiolab. All Things Considered. Marketplace. We don’t have a television. There is something about cooking in the kitchen with the radio (well, podcasts) playing that feels old school. It makes me think about my grandparents, sitting around listening to the wireless at night with the family. And I feel smarter after I turn off these programs than I do if I were watching, I don’t know, Dancing with the Stars or something.

18. The Essential Bakery’s raisin pecan bread. I’ve missed it for the last four years. I’m back and I bought it. It was worth all six dollars for the one loaf, and I will cherish every bite.

19. my job.

20. great inlaws. see post.

21. good coffee. when you have a cup of bad coffee, suddenly your respect for a good cup of strong, pungent, dark coffee grows.

November 23, 2011

22. Moving across the country to a great group of friends. It’s really the best thing you cas ask for–a built in network of people that already like you, that you laugh loudly and at length with–and takes the sting out of homesickness.

23. Good friends to come home to.  I have a handful that will always be in the right place at the right time (and by that I don’t mean the convenient place). It’s amazing to think now, how long we’ve been friends. In the vicinity of 25 or, in some cases, 30 years. Yeah. I’m that old. And it’s been that long. I am so thankful that they’re still there, and still that close.

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