This Thanksgiving finds us alone in our house, with Sydney and Erin taking turns lying down as we work through nasty colds. Not quite the Thanksgiving we had been hoping for (which would be low-key family time with lots of fun cooking, holiday projects, and hikes). Still, as we sat down to a last-minute supper of roasted sweet potato wedges with cilantro sour cream, we had things to be thankful for:
– This cold, which all four of us have had by now, is the first we’ve had all fall. Given how frequently we were sick last year in England, we are thankful for this long stretch of good health. We’re also thankful that it appeared when we don’t have to do a lot of teaching, since canceling class this late in the semester would cause a lot of headaches.
– We’re grateful for our new home. Some unusually cold weather and illness have us inside a bit more, but the kids have been, overall, very good, digging out Legos and snagging spare wood pieces from Sydney’s home projects, and we’ve had space for all of this activity. We’re going to be hosting my department’s Christmas party next week, and this house is a lot better suited to hospitality than was our little place in England!
– We’re grateful for work that we really enjoy and good childcare down the street. I am certainly tired this late in the semester (as students have started tiring and not speaking up in class, I have to fill in the energy gap one way or another), but I am loving my work. In a recent department meeting I laughed so hard that I had tears in my eyes. Needless to say, I work with great people.
– We’re grateful that we have lots of friends and family with whom we can spend our time. David and Lisa are just down the street, Heidi’s within six hours, my parents are a day’s drive away, and we’ve mapped out a route to Sydney’s parents that would take us straight through our old haunts in Ithaca. Given how many plane tickets we had to buy earlier this year, and how clear it was in England that we were On Our Own, we’re grateful for the relative proximity of family and friends now.
Happy Thanksgiving, Penner Family!