Traditions all our own…

What a marvelous week! Wednesday, I spent the day with Bam and Mom, first going to the beauty shop, and then cooking with them all afternoon. Bam wrote down her turkey cooking de-structions for all the girls this year…everything you’d need to prepare a perfect bird, with real giblet gravy and cornbread dressing (we do that instead of stuffing). Mom was baking the enormous bird, all 18 pounds worth, in the convection oven. I made a smoked salmon cheese ball, as well as a cherry cheese ball. They chilled for a couple of hours and then I rolled them in chopped pecans. Yummy! Next year, I want to cook the bird. Quite a challenge!

Dad started our newest family tradition. After we said the Lord’s Prayer, and enjoyed a sumptuous meal together, we took turns telling everyone what we were most thankful for in our lives. Since it was unexpected, I really didn’t feel like I got to say as much as I wanted to–I’ll try to hit the higher notes here.

I’m thankful for my family and friends. I’m thankful for my parents who love me no matter what. That’s a pretty big deal. My mom put up with me through my sneaky, angst-ridden, bitchy, entitled, rotten attitude teenage years (so did Dad), but she had it worse. She is so sweet and loving. At the time, I was repaying said love with snarls and disdain. It took me well into my thirties to enjoy true closeness and friendship with her. I’m thankful for all her patience, for the long nights spent cracking the proverbial whip, for fresh bedding every night, for Little Debbie’s cakes, for hand made Barbie clothes, for phenomenal Halloween costumes, for everything.

I’m thankful for my dad. He has loved me despite all the egregious things I have done. He spent years teaching me how to throw a baseball (I DON’T throw like a girl), taking me to basketball games, trying to teach me golf, teaching me algebra with the patience of Job, cooked me anything but breakfast food for years, bought me several cars, somehow didn’t disown me countless times, and loved me more than I love myself. He taught me about integrity, honesty, never being afraid to ask, and begging forgiveness instead of permission (lol…just kidding). Dad tried to protect me from my own mistakes, but let me make them anyway so I could learn. Dad is the most loving, hard-working, harder-partying, vivacious man imaginable and I am beyond thankful that he is in our lives.

I am thankful for my son, the greatest gift God ever bestowed on me. He is kinder, sweeter, and more thoughtful than I could ever hope to be. He has a giving, open heart and trusts others first, before ever having doubts. Patrick is so absurdly talented…a fabulous singer with a deep voice and brilliant range, a natural actor, a tremendous drummer, an ACT/SAT killer (he has mastered the art of standardized testing, an incredible athlete in basketball, cross country AND soccer, and, an advanced scholar in math, Spanish and science. He’s also an extremely loyal friend, gregarious, welcoming and funny. All his life, he has never met a stranger. Because of his own struggles with ADHD, he is empathetic towards other children with learning challenges. His generosity of heart has blown me away at times. I am so thankful to have a close, loving relationship with him.

I’m thankful for my entire family, so this could go on for days; however, I’ll wrap it up and go cook dinner. One last mention…I’m thankful for my precious dogs, Biscuit and Skyler. They make me laugh every day, and fill my heart with love, even on the darkest days.

Hoping your Thanksgiving was full of blessings and love, and that your Christmas and New Years are equally joyous and wonderful!006 007 013 026 070 127 156

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