Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thankful: the Obligatory Thanksgiving Post

I haven't been blogging because I've been a little sick of cooking.  And I've been knitting like a crazy person.  But that's a post for another day.  

We have been eating.  There's been

Goat Cheese and Pesto Quiche*

and tonight we had really good  
Sausage and White Bean Soup
(I'll post the recipe for this one tomorrow)

*want the recipe?  Let me know and I'll post it.

I also "discovered" Nobscot's Cafe, which on Monday has $3.99 burger night, with any burger and fries for that price.  If you're in the area, worth a trip.

I made up for the lack of meaningful cooking with Thanksgiving.  I love Thanksgiving - lots of eating and no religious obligations.  And I like the cooking part of it too.  In fact, this year I made everything.  We had all kinds of good stuff.

 She was dressed up as a pilgrim.  That would be a paper towel bonnet on her head.

Frosting the gingerbread cupcakes.

 He took off his pilgrim outfit.

 The "before" turkey picture (roasted with rosemary butter).

The "after" picture.

 Stuffing, roasted beets, parsnips and carrots, and creamed spinach with blue cheese topping*.

My plate.  Not the best picture.

Also served was mac n' cheese, roasted brussels sprouts and pearl onions in mustard glaze, boursin mashed potatoes, and biscuits*.  
Oh yeah, and there were people at the table too. 

Dessert featured the gingerbread cupcakes from above, a pumpkin pie that I forgot to take a picture of, and this raspberry trifle that Lea helped make.

And of course this Thanksgiving got me thinking about last Thanksgiving.  Last Thanksgiving my father couldn't come to dinner because he was in the hospital with MRSA, and he was really really sick.  Pete had chemo that Wednesday, so he wasn't feeling so hot (to say the least).  And the stress of it all was finally catching up to me and I developed a really fun case of paralytic illius and had a horrible stomachache and basically couldn't eat anything other than Lipton noodle soup and yogurt for the three weeks after Thanksgiving.  Last Thanksgiving kind of sucked, although I have to say we made the best we could of it.  

This Thanksgiving was so much better.  Everyone was here, everyone was healthy.  I know people say that you should be "thankful for your health," but that is a really hard thing to do.  How can you be thankful for something that just should be?  I am thankful that the people I love so much aren't feeling badly, and I am so grateful that they're still alive.  But I am also acutely aware that health is not something that you can take for granted.  It's here one moment and then it's gone.  And then, hopefully, it's back. 

I am a worrier, and when Pete was sick it was really hard not to get ahead of myself.  Lots of "what ifs" pile up when your husband has cancer.  Even though he was responding to treatment and the prognosis was (and is) good, there are so many ways that things can get derailed.  Finally I started saying to myself, "No one is going to die today."  And it made me able to focus on just that one day and be grateful for it.  A little morbid, perhaps, but it kept me from going insane.

This Thanksgiving I said it to myself again.  "No one is going to die today."  And I could be thankful for that.  Every day I can get up and say that with a reasonable degree of confidence is a good day.  So I guess that's how I'm thankful for health.  If someone's going to be here tomorrow, relatively comfortable and participating in life, that's a good day.  There's a lot about life that hasn't gone the way I thought it would, but I try to be thankful nonetheless.

I think that this was the really long winded, old person way of saying YOLO, but hopefully with a little more perspective and more impulse control than the average teenager. I mean, seriously?

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