The downhill vacation slide has begun: Cook dinner every part you’ll be able to consider for Thanksgiving dinner! Get an early begin on Christmas playing cards to get them on sale! Order Christmas presents that need to be mailed quickly! Resolve what to present to everybody else, together with the canines! Begin Christmas cooking! Work on future blogs about good Christmas books for canine lovers, and avoiding canine stress over the vacations! Be joyous and stuffed with cheer!
Or, the one necessary factor: Give thanks. Be grateful. Have a good time Thanks Giving. That’s my focus right this moment, and I’ll hold the nice and cozy gentle of gratitude shining inside me all through the top of the 12 months. I hope you’ll be a part of me to have a good time the true and exquisite spirit of this week’s vacation: Giving Thanks.
First, and at all times, I’m grateful for my husband, associate, buddy, lover, and man with the best eyebrows ever, Jim Billings. Right here’s a photograph lately taken a couple of weeks in the past by Steve Dahlgren, an important native photographer who focuses on canines, however isn’t so unhealthy at utilizing us two-legs as topics both:
We simply turned 74 collectively, (Born on the identical day, identical 12 months. Yup, actually.), and I’m grateful each day of my life that we discovered one another, twenty-two years in the past.
I’m grateful for household. Just some days in the past I made last-minute determination to fly to San Antonio to be at my eldest sister’s new e book launch and eightieth birthday celebration. Wendy Barker is a celebrated poet and artistic writing instructor, and I’m over the moon proud to be her sister. I left at 6:30 AM Friday morning, met my niece, Wendy Piatt (and singer Sweetlove), who additionally got here (from LA, additionally on the final minute, no small factor), flew residence Saturday morning at 5:31 AM. It was magical. Right here they each are, earlier than Wendy’s studying:
And from Jim’s aspect of the household, right here’s granddaughter Quinne at a Halloween celebration, who we received to go to in upstate New York, together with son Shane, daughter-in-law Rachael, and grand youngsters Taylor and Quinne:
And, in fact, the members of the family who characterize why I started this weblog in 2008, Skip and Maggie (photograph additionally by Steve Dahlgren):
Watching them play is one of the best a part of my day. (Okay, getting in mattress at night time–did I point out I’m 74?–is a detailed second.) I don’t have phrases to say how a lot I really like Maggie’s expressive face. If any canine had a humorousness, she does.
There’s a lot extra. So, a lot. However I want to maneuver on right this moment, to engaged on my novel, to getting some boring however necessary techie stuff handled, to working the canines, and to interviewing somebody for my submit developing on December twelfth. Though it’s onerous to cease, I’m going to depart you with solely two extra pictures.
It’s possible you’ll recall that we rehomed Nellie, the proper cat, as a result of we couldn’t present her with the life she deserved. I miss her each day. Each single day. And, I’m grateful that she is in such an ideal residence, and is so joyful. I might be grateful to buddies Bonita and Fredericka for taking her again so long as I dwell.
Right here’s what we get in return: A stream of gorgeous birds at our feeders all day lengthy. They’ll bankrupt me, however they carry me pleasure all through the day. Chickadees, Nuthatches, Tufted Titmice, Downy WPs, Bushy WPs, Crimson-bellied WPs, Doves, Finches, Bluejays, Sparrows, and who is aware of else will shock us over the winter. Right here’s a White-Breasted Nuthatch and a Downy Feminine at their favourite feeding station.
There’s time, at all times, for yet another assertion of gratitude: It’s to you, pricey readers, who encourage and problem and delight me each week. I want I had a photograph of you all!!!
I hope you may have the time to affix me, and let our worldwide, dog-loving village know what you might be grateful for. Even only one little factor. I’ll learn each factor you write, again and again.
With love and gratitude,