As this year slowly but surely draws to a close, and as Thanksgiving itself was several days ago and I totally missed it, I want to give thanks for lots of things, in no particular order:
My big sweetie, Eric, who, despite being the biggest school-work procrastinator in the world, is all A's in my book. How lucky I am to have found a person who loves me for my idiosyncrasies, and tolerates my bad habits, like dirtying every dish in the cupboard while preparing a two-ingredient meal, making sure the laundry is folded right away but not feeling like putting it away for days, and being a big nag about finishing his math homework. Love him.
Trips away from Boston. We've been to so many places over the last couple years, from California and Idaho, to more familiar haunts of my past, to New Jersey, where I will never ever venture again. The longer I live here, the more thankful I am to get away whenever possible. Thank goodness for other places.
My job. Despite the never-ceasing drama that is the Board of Higher Education, and the incredible frustration I feel in knowing that the true leaders of this system are the people who are often overshadowed by politically appointed idiots, I do love my job. And that is the first time I've been able to say that in a long time. My boss is also pretty great--it's a good thing working for someone you respect. Again, I couldn't say that for a long time.
The Fam. My recent purchase of a cell phone has done wonders for my relationship with my family. It's weird, but the only time I want to talk on the phone is when I'm walking home from work. It's about a half-hour walk, and it's the perfect time to catch up. I've learned in many ways, including through interactions with other families, that mine is sane, rational, and loving. I've been very lucky to become friends with my parents as we've grown older--that is one of the best things about being an adult, I think.
My friends, particularly Katie and the Boston girls, and Joey and Jayson. Katie, of course, has been the first person I call when anything remotely exciting happens for about 10 years. The Boston girls, Ash and Abs, are just wonderful people who have made me feel more at home here than just about anyone else. Joey and Jayson... Ahhh, my boys. They're so cute. Joey was actually the first person I ever met at Franklin--we sat next to each other in the math placement test. It was lucky, because the second person I met was a big meanie. If not for Joey, Franklin probably would have been a very different experience.
Christmas is coming. When I was a kid, it was all about the feeling of Christmas morning, when Abby and I would wake up at like 5:00 and wait at the top of the stairs for three hours, because the rule was that we couldn't go downstairs till 8:00. We'd open presents and then head over to Grandma and Grampa Stuart's house, where my aunt, uncle and cousins would be there. We'd have dinner and be a big family... We don't really do that anymore, and Christmases are really small around our house, but I LOVE being home at the holidays.
Memories of really good people. Heard last night that my old friend Halley Hughes passed away a week or so ago. Halley was a friend of my grandparents and one of The Bandits, a group of old men who frequented the golf course I worked at during high school and college. What a great guy. I hadn't seen Halley in several years, but we always sent Christmas cards and kept each other updated. He was a special man who reminded me a lot of my grandparents. Once, my grandparents told me they were going to give me a big surprise. I got pretty excited--maybe they were going to get me a car or something (though that would have never happened in a million years). So they put me in the car, and drove out to the river, and we pulled into Halley and Mary-Louise's house. That was the surprise. They taught me how to play pinochle that night. It was an honor to have known Halley, and I will surely miss him.
This Blog: www.claudiasroom.blogspot.com. Profanity-laced commentary aside, I adore this blog and check it frequently hoping she's updated it. Hilarious. This girl, who must be around my age, is reading all of the BabySitter's Club books from her childhood, and then writing about them. I LOVED the BSC when I was a kid, and read every book I could get my hands on. Just reading these entries makes me remember wanting to wear that Famous Cities skirt that MaryAnne wore to her first dance with Logan....
Anyway, it's been a bit of a funky couple weeks. There's no doubt in my mind that my current level of hatred of Boston (19 out of 10) is due to the wonderful visit I had with the fam/Scottsburg folk back in Indiana a couple weeks ago. I do know that I have to just enjoy the here and now, and appreciate that I am where I am for the time being, but I am just currently finding little if anything redeeming AT ALL about this place.
That being said, I am looking forward to a holiday party we're attending in a couple weeks called Drink the Tree, which features thousands of nips on a Christmas tree. I got a new fancy cocktail dress, and Eric's wearing a matching tie. Whoooo!