the people and things for which I’m giving thanks this year.
1. my adoption oh sure, it happened nearly 26 years ago now, but it’s the piece of my life that makes all the rest possible. my adoption is the best thing that ever happened to me; a life without the family, husband, home I love is one I cannot really imagine.
2. my hubby surely I could write 10,000 words here about Andrew, but that would not express how grateful I am to laugh with him every day. he eats all my veggies, poor guy, and supports me in everything. he is my best self. we met twelve years ago, and it seems he has been my life always.
3. my family from my parents who don’t forget me for a minute, to my amaaazing in-laws, to my sweet cousins that are more like siblings, I am thankful to be surrounded by abundant love and encouragement. their love teaches me how to care for others in my life.
4. our new home our apartment was sweetly wonderful, but our new condo is so “us” and better suited for our life. we finally have room for my piano, all of Andrew’s guitars, beds for guests, and a seriously spacious kitchen. it may not be glamorous, but I have more room to cook and share the room with company.
5. my job our world is full of loss right now, and I am incredibly grateful to be employed and work in a positive, giving place. my students are precious and special in every way, and I spend my day learning from some remarkable, patient people. I give thanks for a job that allows me time to come home and spend the evening relaxing with my best friend.
6. great food there are so many people without food, without grocery stores or markets, without the means to afford healthy meals. I am grateful for the freedom to stop at the store whenever I want for lovely things like asparagus and cheese and sometimes ice cream sandwiches. I am grateful I have enough to share, and hope I never fail to do so.
7. grad school I love, love, love learning and surrounding myself with great thinkers who share my passion for exploring solutions to the poverty and hunger and health issues our neighbors face every day. while I find myself complaining for the sake of complaining about homework, I am so grateful for my education. I know this where learning how to serve others really begins.
8. good health I get teased for my broccoli enthusiasm, but I’ve spent a lot of time in the past feeling unwell. I am thankful for renewed energy, restored health, and being able to afford wholesome foods.
9. friends old and new Andrew and I keep in touch with friends we’ve known most of our life, but we have recently crossed paths with spectacular new friends who enrich our lives. friends who remind of us the kind of people we strive to be. in the three years we’ve been married, our social schedule has never been so full. we are both grateful to feel acknowledged, loved, and appreciated by the friends with whom we have begun sharing our life.
10. our church faith is a very personal aspect of one’s life, along with the decision to have it. unfortunately, I’ve witnessed a lot of communities that promote a life of self-doubt, perfectionism, exclusivity and prosperity as a means to living a “blessed” life. I am filled with thanks for finding a home in the Episcopal church among authentic and accepting people who embrace a message of love. our church provides a place for the hungry and homeless, and is a place I get the chance to cook for and dine with neighbors so often forgotten. I am especially grateful for this.
11. you who says a Top Ten list can’t sneak in an eleven? I am humbled you stop here to read about meals I hope you’ll find the ingredients and encouragement to make. teaching a cooking class is not very high up on my list of aspirations (travel the world, open a B&B with Andrew, publish a book of poetry, end world hunger, etc.), but I want so much to encourage others to explore culinary creations and find the joy I attempt to bring here. we have to eat, so why not enjoy something unforgettably delicious? thank you for your comments and recipes and virtual smiles.