Monday, November 30, 2009

The Book

I seem to have recovered from all the turkey and stuffing and many, many helpings of pie. Mmmm....pie. Excuse me for a moment while I salivate thinking about the pie...

Okay. I think I can focus now. So! How was your Thanksgiving? Wonderful, I hope, and full of good things like fabulous feasts, laughter until your cheeks hurt, and warm hugs. And naps. I hope you had some good naps over the holiday. You can never have too many good naps, I always say.

Our Thanksgiving was spent shared between my family and my husband's family: Feasting and football with my family and then dessert and more dessert with Patrick's. It's a good, but filling, compromise. We get to see everyone and eat and visit and eat and play and eat. And did I mention eat? I'm pretty sure that I won't need to eat anything between now and Christmas. I'll just live off of the fat stores that I've accumulated over Thanksgiving.

We celebrated our first holiday with most of my family present (we missed you TX family!) in my parents' new home. It was an adjustment in some ways, but it was good. Some things, by necessity of space had to change, but other things stayed the same. My folks' new house doesn't have a dining room like their old house did and their kitchen was too small to accommodate 15 people. But! Their house does have a finished, insulated, and heated garage which we have christened the Ivy Room. And the Ivy Room is where we feasted and where the grandkids slept on blow-up beds. So, you know, it all worked out.

One of the things that didn't change was The Book. The Book, you see, has been a tradition in my family for several years. I found a journal-type book several years ago and gave it to my mom on Thanksgiving. As I gave it to her, I told her I thought it would be great if we could keep track of our blessings and the many things we are thankful for. I thought it would be nice to see how things changed over the years. My mother loved the idea, and each year, adults and children alike have written, dictated, or drawn an entry. It's been fun to look back and see how the kids have grown and to see how each and every time I have written, amongst my many blessings, some food (like cucumber sandwiches or Pinot Noir or bacon) has been part of my list. Go figure.

So each year, my mom faithfully gets out The Book and we all take turns over several days writing in it. And each year, my husband grimaces. The Book, you see, is the Bane Of His Thanksgiving.

My dear husband is my polar opposite in many ways. And one of those ways is in the expression of his gratitude. He is quite satisfied with keeping his thankfulness to himself. And I don't mean that in a bad way. He is grateful for his many blessings. He prays. He tells me and his other loved ones about the ways he is thankful. He just does not like writing in The Book. And y'all know me. I'm all about the writing. When I come in the door, I'm all "where's the book? I need the book! Let me write alllllllreadddddddy!!" My husband? He hides from the book.

It has become my mission to make sure he fills out something. Most years he does. Last year, he escaped without writing a thing. I have no idea how such an appalling oversight happened, but this year, I aimed to rectify it. And this year, his entry was a doozy. It left me breathless with tears. After he wrote his entry, The Book barely had time to rest on the table before I whisked it up and read it out loud to the entire room. We were beside ourselves. This is what he wrote:

I am thankful for the birds,
I am thankful for the trees.
I am thankful for my wife,
'Cause she's the bees knees.

I am thankful for my children,
Though they sometimes are a pain.
I am thankful for my mother-in-law,
Though she drives me insane.

I am thankful for the sun,
I am thankful for the moon.
I am thankful for Thanksgiving,
But it always ends too soon.

Wonderful, no? That my friends is one of the reasons that I fell in love with and continue to love my husband. He is hilarious and even after 18 years, he surprises me. I'm thankful for him and I don't need The Book to share my thankfulness about that.

My mom, by the way, thought it was hilarious as well. Now the ball is in her court and she'll have to find a way to "burn" him back. No telling what he'll find in his Christmas stocking...

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