Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Giving Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving to each of you. I hope that at this moment you've sent your last email before the holiday, or completed your shopping for tomorrow's meal, or just landed back in your home town, or...

I'm giddy with the excitement of celebrating Thanksgiving with dear friends who really are like family to me. I'm also very much looking forward to mashed potatoes with butter and gravy.

I'll admit; I've been reflective today. There's an infinite number of things to be grateful for daily, but the day before Thanksgiving gets me every year. Quite obviously that which is top of the list for both Mia and me is Red Letter Days, an entity that continues to bestow endless possibilities and dreams fulfilled. It is our brain child, but thriving because of the amazing people who have breathed life in to it: Christina, Jennifer, Taylor, Scarlett, and Jessica. Mia and I are so darn fortunate to have them as colleagues, but much more so as friends.

So in conversation with each of them today, I asked "What are YOU thankful for?"

Christina is thankful for her friends and family. In her speaking you could hear her giddiness over the anticipation of her mom arriving this evening for the holiday weekend. It was a joy to witness and a true testament to Chrissy's generous, kind spirit.

Jennifer's response was deeply heartfelt -- "I'm thankful for so many things, especially the bright, intelligent, gifted, genuine people I have surrounded myself with." All I have to say is "Backacha, Jen" -- what Jen sees in others is absolutely what we all see in her.

Taylor's retort was immediate -- "I'm definitely thankful for my family." The emotion behind her words was very powerful, and exemplified Tay's perpetual sweetness. Her vibrancy is something we all appreciate and receive so much joy from.

Scarlett's response brought a tear to my eye, and was a fine showing of her care and consideration for others. She said she is most thankful for her mom. To quote Scarlett: "She is near and dear to my heart, and I'm just so grateful that she's my mom."

Jessica was quick to respond with thoughtfulness and gracious ease. She is thankful for her house, family, job, and well-being. What we love about Jess is that she appreciates everything that makes her life full and gives each entity her fullest consideration.

I was able to corner Mia for an answer (hard to do when she's wearing her chef's hat and ordering speciality cheeses for tomorrow's feast). In her easy, southern California drawl: "Other than our Thanksgiving turkey being defrosted on time? I'm most thankful for the love and support I've received from my family and friends through my many journeys in life."

Guess that leaves me. And having to answer the big question myself, I realize why Chrissy, Jen, Tay, Scarlett, Jess, and Mia put forth such genuine feeling. It's hard not to.

I'm thankful for my mother and father's love, my grandfather's example, my friends who just get it, music that stirs my soul, and my cat, Lucy.

And I'm grateful for mashed potatoes with butter and gravy.

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