I’m Thankful For…

thankful

I’ll be the first to admit that I have an incredibly amazing life. I don’t mean that in a braggy way–I just consider myself wildly lucky, and I’m grateful for so many people and things. Some of these will be pretty personal and some will be of the fluffier variety–but all are appreciated.

In no particular order, these are the things I’m grateful for.

Whoever invented salt and vinegar chips and salted dark chocolate. I love those people a lot.

The strength to remove myself from negative situations – both professional and personal.  I can’t tell you how much better that’s made my life.

My kids. Holy shit, my kids. I’m so grateful for these two, I’m not even sure I can put it into words. Yeah. I know it’s my job to use words and all, but some things just defy explanation. However, I’ll try. I am convinced I have the kids I was meant to have–I feel like they might have driven other parents to beat them and I feel like we might have wanted to strangle other kids. Some days, they drive me batshit crazy, but most days, I’m in awe at their cleverness, their kind and giving natures, their brilliant self-expression, their unflagging ability to truly be themselves even when it’s hard and scary, their emotional honesty, their wicked senses of humor, and their openness and willingness to accept others.

My husband is pretty freaking awesome. He’s not perfect, but he’s pretty perfect for me. Yeah, there are some days I want to throat punch him, but those days aren’t very common. He makes me laugh nearly every day, he’s unflaggingly supportive and loving and he’s an awesome dad. Also?  He gets me.

My family. I love my parents, brothers, sister, their spouses, nieces and nephews the whole crazy pile of them. Sure, we want to strangle each other sometimes, but I’m so crazy lucky to get to travel through life with these people. I don’t know that anyone makes me laugh as hard as they do. And these are the same people who will drop everything to help others.

My friends. OMG, my friends. I literally have the most amazing friends on the planet. Every single one of them is incredibly kind and supportive. These are the people who will do whatever it takes to help the people they love. They’re bright, talented, and hilariously funny. (What? So I gravitate toward funny people. It happens.) But I love these people. I love them so hard, and I would utterly devastated without them.

Readers. Those who read my books and those who don’t. I love that they’re out there reading making it possible for authors to keep doing what they love best.

The internet. Look, the internet is where a lot of my friends live. It’s also where Netflix and Tumblr and Twitter and, yes, Facebook are. Also? It’s where my job is. Writing books and editing books. Yeah, I could do that stuff without the internet, but this makes it a hell of a lot easier.

Cats. Yeah, I said it. I love the furry little assholes.

Adderall. Nope – not even trying to be funny, here. I finally feel like I can think clearly again for the first time in years. Without evangelizing too much, here’s why in detail.

Creativity. I’m so glad that I can do things like write and knit and sew and cross stitch and make pottery. I’m not sure what I’d even do with myself if I couldn’t.

Okay, I think I’ve rambled on enough. What are you grateful for? Oh, and be sure to check out the other bloggers’ posts by clicking their names.

Jess

Kellie

Jessica

Gwen

Bringing the Green Bean Casserole. Again.

It’s that time of year when my family only trusts me to bring one dish to the big family gathering. Green Bean Casserole. Now granted, I make a bitchin GBC – it includes extra goodies like garlic, cheddar cheese and bacon. Mmmmm…bacon.

You see, while my family loves me, they don’t trust me.

It’s true, I’m not a great cook, but I get by. I’d like to think that I could branch out a little and try something else. Maybe those cheesy potatoes with the crunchy stuff on top. Or squash. Or hell, a pie. But nope, I’m on GBC duty. Again.

As has become tradition on this blog, I’m going to mention a few things I’m thankful for.

First and foremost, I’m thankful for my family – even though they’re actively stifling my creativity in the kitchen. I have the most amazing kids, husband, siblings, parents and extended family. They’re all a little crazypants, but I wouldn’t trade any of them.

I’m thankful for my friends – online and real life alike. The connection that have with these people is amazing. I know that there are some people who don’t understand that it’s possible to build real, loving, supportive relationships with people you may never physically meet, but it’s true. I love you guys, and I’m grateful for each and every one of you. And my real life friends, I love you, too. You’re all amazing.

I’m thankful that I’m able to build a career that encompasses two of my biggest passions – reading and writing. I feel incredibly lucky to spend my work day editing other authors and writing my own stuff. Grants, some work days are longer than others – and I’ve had some doozies lately – but no matter how crappy the day is, I’d still rather do this than anything else.

In no particular order, I’m thankful for laughter, dark chocolate, my kids’ laughter, changing leaves, the support of my friends and laughing til we cry, bonfires, music, purring kittens, Starbucks, foggy mornings, starry nights, stories to lose myself in, a roof over our heads, books, creative outlets, thunderstorms, snow days, the clacking sound of knitting needles, hot tea, apple butter…

I could go on and on and I probably would if I didn’t have to mix up that green bean casserole. Mostly, I’m just thankful for the life I have and I’m thankful for everyone in it. I hope that everyone who celebrates has an awesome Thanksgiving and those who don’t have a wonderful day.

And as we say in my fam, Happy Infect and Kill the Indigenous People Day. (As you may have gathered, we’re not particularly reverent.) 😉

I’m Grateful

Happy Thanksgiving, or Happy Kill the Indigenous Peoples Day as my family often says. I joke about Thanksgiving…well…Columbus Day, too, for that matter, but I do think it’s important to take the time to reflect on the things we’re grateful for.
So often the mindset seems to be about focusing on what we want rather than the what we have, and that can lead to dissatisfaction with our lives. Now, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to improve our lives, but when we don’t acknowledge the great – or yeah – even the mediocre stuff we tend to take it for granted or cease to appreciate it all together. Sometimes the acknowledging process requires us to reframe our perceptions a bit.

For instance, I could be pissy that our house needs a new roof, but looking at the economic crisis in the state of Michigan, I’m thrilled that we have a house. It’s warm, it’s not in danger of foreclosure and my family is safe and protected.
I could be bitter because my hubby has to work today. And truth be told, I’m not thrilled, but because he was without permanent work and we were all without health insurance for almost two years makes the fact that he now has a great job (with benefits) that he loves 99.9% of the time more important than the fact that he has to work a holiday. (I’ll be bringing home leftovers for him.)
Now, I’m not trying to sound like Pollyanna here, cause really, I kinda want to slap her, but I would like to share some of the things I’m grateful for.
My kids who make me laugh and help me see the world with new eyes and teach me about love every day.
My hubby – even though he pisses me off from time to time, I love him more each day.
My family – the whole crazyass lot of them. No matter what, we’re all there for one another.
My friends – they listen to me whine, share my joys, make me laugh til I turn an unhealthy shade of purple and gasp for breath.
My kitties – I’m especially thankful that Small’s health is improving every day.
My career – I’m doing what I always wanted to do and loving it.
And now, in no particular order, some random bits I’m grateful for…Johnny Depp, Coke, pretty stones, music, Buffy, hot tea, the sound of clacking knitting needles, hugs, frequent and clean restrooms along the highway, the internet, Ani Difranco, vanilla flavored lip balm, sleep, chocolate, salt & vinegar potato chips, sandalwood essential oil, Adam Duritz, faeries, falling leaves, ibuprofen, cheese pizza, ren faires, books, Brian Froud, fabric stores, legos, Kate Rusby, more books, Mr. Clean Magic Eraser, central air, the muppets, laughter, standing stones, new baby smell, oak trees and the nice, warm bed I’m about to crawl into.

How about it – what are you grateful for?