My Other Thanksgiving List

As Thanksgiving draws closer, I realize how blessed my life is and how many things I have to be thankful for.

I’m thankful that I have a wonderful husband, great kids, loving parents and a warm house. I’m very thankful my dad’s cancer is in remission. I’m thankful for my 93 year old grandmother who is here visiting for this Thanksgiving. I’m thankful for all of my friends who make me laugh. But I’m also thankful for a lot of other stuff that never receive any recognition.

So here’s my list of “other” things I’m thankful for:

1. I’m thankful that I don’t have another gynecologist appointment for another full year, because those appointments are just not any fun.
2. I’m thankful that I have a zero balance on my credit cards. (Which means I can go hog wild at ANY MOMENT.)
3. I’m thankful for my favorite restaurants that offer take-out when I’m too lazy to cook.
4. Which makes me also thankful for whoever invented microwave ovens because when I’m too lazy to leave the house to grab take-out, I can just nuke a hot dog.
5. Now that I’m in my 40’s, I’m thankful for hair dye.
6. I’m thankful for plug-in air freshener that makes my house always smell like I’m Betty Crocker and I’ve just taken an apple pie out of the oven.
7. I’m thankful for FaceBook, because it allows me to mass-notify people of things going on in my life.
8. I’m thankful that Girl Scout cookies only come 15 to a box, so when I have a sweet tooth it’s not as damaging to my waistline as eating an entire package of Oreo cookies…unless I have TWO boxes of Girl Scout cookies, which I have done before.
9. I’m thankful that I have not had a cavity in 20 years, because I loathe going to the dentist just as much as I loathe going to the gynecologist.
10. I’m thankful I have not found any wiry chin hairs yet.
11. I’m SUPER thankful to the girl who invented Spanx so I can eat like a Sumo wrestler and still squeeze myself into my clothes without looking like a stuffed sausage.
12. I’m thankful for texting because there are just some people I don’t want to talk to on the phone.
13. I’m thankful that when I forget to take my 6 pound dog out and she accidently poops in the house, there’s not much to clean up.
14. I’m thankful that I have had the opportunity to eat Twinkies and Ho-Ho’s in my life, because my future grandchildren will never know how wonderful that creamy filling actually is.
15. I’m thankful that I live in a country where I can practice my faith and not worry about whether I’m going to get shot in the head.
16. I’m thankful for Purell. If you’re a germ-o-phobe like me, you will totally get why I’m thankful for this.
17. I’m thankful for MapQuest because otherwise I might end up in Alabama when I want to go to North Carolina.
18. I’m thankful that my step-kids don’t view me as their Step-Monster, even though my husband tells me they are a little afraid of me. Winning!
19. I’m thankful that my husband’s SUV and my car are both paid off, even though the windshield is cracked and the bumper has a dent in it from where my husband backed into my son’s truck.
20. I’m thankful for heated seats in my car so when it’s freezing cold outside, my butt is toasty warm.
21. I’m thankful for Dutch Monkey doughnuts. If you don’t know what that is, look it up and have some shipped to you. You’ll be thankful too.
22. I’m thankful that I made it to 43 years old before I had to get reading glasses.
23. I’m thankful for my high school girl friends who I’ve known for (cough) over 25 years but when we get together, we are taken back to 1986 and giggle like we are 16 years old. But then again, that could be the wine.
24. I’m thankful for the Weather Channel so I know how to accurately dress each day.
25. I’m thankful for e-bay so when I want to buy something but I don’t want my husband to know, I can sell stuff and have cash to go buy what I want.
26. I’m thankful for Clorox wipes to help my Obsessive-Compulsive tendency to easily clean everything.
27. I’m thankful that someone mixed tequila with some frozen lime juice and created the margarita.
28. I’m thankful that I have a dishwasher because I would totally hate to have to hand wash those utensils we used for our take-out dinner.
29. I’m thankful that I don’t have any other body-invasive procedures on the schedule such as a colonoscopy or anything super fun like that.

I’m sure there are a zillion other things I’m thankful of and should put on this list, but that could take all day to list and seriously, no one is that interested in my life.

But there is one more thing…I am thankful for the people who actually read and enjoy my blogs. It’s fun to write them, but it’s even more fun when people acknowledge that they enjoy them.

So, dear reader….I’m thankful for YOU.

September 11 – Inspiration From Adversity

Each morning I get up around 6:45 and make sure my step-son is getting up and ready for school. I make breakfast for him and get his lunch box together. Then his carpool ride arrives and on most days, I head on back to sleep. I am usually still up until 1 or 2AM every night so 6:45 comes fast.

Tuesday morning of this week was no different than the usual except for one thing…Tuesday was September 11, and marked the 11th anniversary of the attacks on America.

My husband works from home also, but on Tuesday he got up early to do some work with his father. I highly contemplated going back to sleep but as my snuggley warm bed called out to me, I thought about all of the women who went back to sleep after their kids left for school. As their husbands were getting ready for work, they missed what turned out to be the last opportunity to eat breakfast and spend some time just being together. So I put my house-coat and fuzzy slippers back on and shuffled into the kitchen.

It made me really think – how often do we take for granted the time we spend with our loved ones? Who knows when the last breakfast will be? The last kiss good-bye? The opportunity to tell someone we love them? Or just waving at your spouse from the kitchen door as he drives away?

I can’t imagine what the 9/11 women (or men for that matter) would give for a do-over of that horrible morning.

I need to do better so I decided Tuesday morning that l would include in my daily or weekly schedule as much as the following as possible:

Being thankful for my life and the lives of my friends and family… Saying “I love you” as often as possible without getting annoying… Hugging my kids and husband tightly every opportunity I have… Writing letters to my 93 year old grandmother since she can’t hear me when I call on the phone… Calling my parents even though they only live 20 minutes away… Writing my sister an e-mail to let her know what’s going on in my life instead of having her read it on Facebook… Getting together with my girlfriends… Reading more books no matter what the topic is… Creating new recipes for my step-son who has a gluten allergy… Watching sci-fi movies (that I can’t stand) with my husband just because he loves them… Playing cards with my step-daughter and not calling it quits after just one game… Driving three hours one way just to have lunch with my college student because I miss him… Standing up for my political beliefs and using my right as an American to vote… Running three miles every single day and actually looking forward to it… Going back to church each week and maybe getting up the nerve to sing in the choir…

Sounds like a New Year’s resolution list, but for me it’s something that I really need to do.

We have all heard how nice it would be if we all lived like there was no tomorrow. It is clearly easier said than done or else it would already be happening. But if it did happen, people might generally be nicer and people across the world could hold hands…yadda yadda yadda. More than likely that is not ever going to happen.

But at my house, it will.

And in it’s own tiny way, it’s a start.