I include this picture because this is one of my “happy moments.” We all have them. Moments where things seemed so perfect, or we got a gift we could have never anticipated, or the food was full of memories and made you feel fat and happy.
This moment was one of the most perfect Christmas mornings I’d ever had. The townhouse we had rented had a fireplace. I’d not had a fireplace in any home I’d ever owned. This one had one, and it worked well. I bought enough wood to have weekend fires for the entire winter. We had snow on Christmas eve that year, and woke up to a diamond-sparkled sunny morning. The air was bitter cold. But that fireplace – it was roaring with a fire all day long. The house smelled mildly of wood smoke, and cloves from the sugar glaze on the ham in the oven. And I go a gift that I had not anticipated – a Build-a-Bear Rudolph, complete with a hat, scarf, and Rudolph slippers. I have loved Rudolph since I was a little girl and saw it on television (in black and white). Yes, I’m that old – I got to see the very first broadcast of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
I know, it is not Christmas yet, but we are right on the cusp of it as we approach Thanksgiving here in the United States. I my memories, Thanksgiving is full of food, and family, and on Friday, we started the decorating. Thanksgiving is the start of a long, happy, warm season, at least for me.
As we’ve gotten older, and moved away from our childhood homes (in my case, I’ve moved a thousand miles from my childhood home), we make our own new traditions, and spend our Thanksgivings being thankful. And watching football, of course! This year, the weather forecast is a bit dreadful – snow is expected, along with blisteringly cold temps. What better way to spend a cold, snowy day than inside, with a roast turkey, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, hot yeasty rolls, dressing, and PIE? I can’t think of much!
I am thankful for so many things this year – that we are well-housed, even if it is a rental and there is no fireplace; that we have food in our fridge, freezer, and pantry, some of which I grew myself; that my paycheck is more than enough to pay the bills; that we have wonderful neighbors in this little-town-big-city we live in; that I can see the mountains every single day; that I am healthy, despite some aches and pains and needing glasses to read and having to watch what I eat a bit more carefully; for healthy parents that I can still see and communicate with (even though we are thousands of miles apart); for a kitty who thinks I’m her mommy; for grown children that make me proud, and my middle-schooler who is still figuring it all out.
And I am thankful for my publisher, The Wild Rose Press. Without them, I could not say I am a published author. For me, reaching this milestone was never expected, even though I’d been working toward it for many years. To get that opportunity, to have someone validate my writing by publishing it, has been one of those unexpected, but wonderful things that I will add to my list of thankfuls for many years to come.
Things are never perfect. There will always be struggles and bumps in the road and mountains of obstacles. But there are plenty of things that go right. And plenty of things that go better than right. I am a thankful woman.
What are you thankful for this year?