Family Pic Sugarsnap photography

I'm actually working in advance.  Probably because I'm sitting in my robe on a Saturday night in a quiet house with kleenex in one hand and my computer in the  other.  I have been suffering with a cold for over a week and it got me today.  I took a 3 hour nap which you would think would have me up and moving this evening but instead I'm contemplating bedtime before 10pm.  Kind of pathetic but kind of nice.  I had a party I wanted to go to tonight and while a quick stop sounded like fun the task of pulling together a presentable look seemed daunting so here I am in my robe with kleenex (and a cocktail).  Party of 1.  

I'm putting together my to do list for next week which is short!  The kids are done with school Tuesday.  And I'm hosting Thanksgiving!  I've only done it one other time when I was fresh out of school.  We had moved to Salt Lake City.  My family flew up and our close family friends came from Boise.  It was magnificent if I do say myself.  We were renting a small home but we fit.  We starting drinking wine when I started the meal that morning.  This was pre-kids so I was ambitious and still hopeful I would be the next Martha Stewart.  I had purchased cheese cloth from William Sonoma, I had recipes that were quite tasty, and enough wine to put us all in good spirits.  It was no Martha Stewart Thanksgiving but it was good.  OK, it may be the fact, we all started drinking when I started cooking but I'm my sticking with my story that the meal was fantastic. 

Well 16 years later I was going to try again.  But as it started I hit a small glitch.  Our guest list is currently sitting at 28.  My house is modest.  It's going to be tight.  And it was clear quickly we would have to pot luck this feast.  So I have the easy stuff.  Pies, mashed potatoes, green beans and bread.  As I make my list of to dos, I'm reminded of how grateful and thankful I am for this year.

I have a beautiful home to host.  It's almost a full year we have been in the home and I love it.  I love the feeling it gives me when I walk in.  I love the sound of activity in it when the kids are here.  I smiled as I wrote that one, the kids had a large amount of volume going on the other day and I insisted that they lower it so my head didn't pop off.  They may call my BS there but really I love to hear their chatter most of the time :).  I love that we have enough room to spread out but not enough to get lost in here.  I love that my things (art, pictures, knick knacks) can be displayed and make me smile.  I love that the white kitchen is so pretty I'm inclined to spend some (not much) but some time in there.  

More importantly, I'm thankful for my life and my family and friends.  It had been, for probably the first time in my life, a rocky road.  And as I come out on the other side 2 years later I have more clarity than ever.  So divorce is a funny thing.  It affected everything.   I never expected that.  I knew it was not going to be easy but I had no idea how it would affect every relationship.  It has brought a clarity to me on how people fit into my life.  But not in a bad way, in a way that allows me to appreciate everyone had a role in my life.  It has allowed me to determine what I need to be happy and to not waste my energy on things that won't bring me happiness.  Because now, with more certainty, I'm aware that this is my only life and I get this one chance to do it right.  That doesn't mean I do it right all the time or that this point is perfection but it does mean that I'm happy and that's more than enough right now.  And if that changes and I need to adjust I hope that I can do that now with more grace and conviction than before.  Life isn't stagnant and it's ok it didn't turn out according to my grand plan (which for the record was a real surprise to me).  It's not ok for me to dwell in that which is not positive.  I also believe that positivity has a huge impact on my kids and that my ultimate job right now to help make them self sufficient warriors of this world that are happy.   

On top of my personal life, my professional life is blooming and I'm thankful.  It has given me a career that I love.  I have the most amazing clients.  While I don't always shout my story at each client meeting I have many that know the turmoil that was part of my life and their kind words will mean more than they ever know.  Rachel is the office manager from heaven.  She kept the boat floating when someone else had to steer.  And our new additions Kim and Jessica have brought a fresh view to the group which is fun.  

Life is good.  So I'm raising my glass now and on Thanksgiving and sincerely thanking my clients for making my workday fun, for those friends that checked in with me when I needed it, for my family who's support never faltered even if my life did seem out of left court, to my kids who amaze me daily (I don't know how I got so lucky to have really good kids), and to Vince who's tribute will be saved for another day but for now I will say I feel lucky to have you in my life and my kids' lives.  I'm grateful you have shown me new things and helped me grow leaps and bounds this year in a direction I'm proud of. - Happy Thanksgiving!