The other day I tweeted, tongue in cheek, of some things I was thankful for: electronic devices that obviate the need for decent penmanship, wool socks, a husband who can do math in his head, sour cream.
The sour cream is what started it. I had just licked a large glob of sour cream off of a spoon as I was cleaning up after dinner, and I was feeling so thankful sour cream is not something diabetics are asked to give up.
So, while it may seem I’m being a smart-ass, my heart is filled with gratitude lately, even for little things like dairy products.
As I write this on Wednesday evening, I’m sitting by a warm fire with my daughter on my lap, my husband relaxing nearby. The bills are paid, my fridge is crammed full of food for the day’s feast. It’s beautiful.
No life is untouched by struggles and misfortune. Should I stumble upon a magic lamp, I could easily come up with three wishes, mainly involving the health and well being of loved ones.
But, by and large, I have the sense I am in midst of what could very well be the happiest and most productive time of my life. My cup runneth over — emotionally, materially, people don’t get much luckier. And I’m oh so thankful.
Wishing you and yours a safe and happy Thanksgiving. Thank you so much for reading.
My husband’s parents are in town. (Hi Larry & Deb!) They live in Minnesota, we live in Oregon. If chewing off their own feet would mean they could see Nora more often, they would do it.
So far this week, they have read books, built towers, petted chickens, listened to every song in Nora’s repetoire, gone to the children’s museum and the swimming pool and snapped hundreds of photos — wearing blissed out expressions the entire time.
The extreme admiration is mutual. Nora keeps running up and grabbing Deb’s legs, then looking up and saying, “I like you, Grandma.” She climbs all over her Papa.
I can almost imagination what they must suffer being so far away from their only grandchild. My beautiful nephew lives very far from me, but it’s not really comparable, because I have Nora to snuggle and tend to — it doesn’t leave much time for longing.
As of this month, both my in-laws are now retired. That will leave a lot of time for longing. Perhaps I should get them a puppy?
Last night at dinner, Nora made a representation of our family in asparagus. There were two tall pieces for Ben and me, and a half-eaten one for her. She held the little family up for me to see.
“This is us! This is daddy, and this is you and –” the smallest spear slipped from her hand and onto the floor.
“I want that!” she cried! “I want me!”
I swooped in and plucked Asparagus Nora off the floor just as our dog, Hoover, was moving in to eat her. Strangely, I felt heroic.
Seeing our family in everyday objects is one of Nora’s favorite pastimes. We are toothpicks, candles, pieces of cheese.
Nora sees herself as a character in every book and makes me replace the character’s name with hers. If she tells me she is Swiper Fox, I must read the story using her name in place of his — and she calls me on my every slip of personal pronoun. She is also fond of flipping story lines. When Sophie Gets Angry, Really, Really Angry becomes When Sophie Gets Happy, Really, Really Happy. At the end of the story, when Sophie returns home, instead of the house being warm and smelling good, I must say, “the house was cold and stinky.”
I realized that she is having great fun figuring out her place in the world and then trying to flip that world on its ear. I’m hoping she puts this tactic to good use as she grows older. Or I’m in big trouble.