Thankful for...

Thanksgiving The growing semblance of sleep at night Air conditioning Being loved My lemon tree The exquisite, unbearable heartache of motherhood The morning's first cup of tea Creative freedom Creative inspiration Peace, in my corner of the world The opportunity to contribute Turkish Delight

On the weekend our family shamelessly appropriated the North American custom of Thanksgiving and adapted it for our own purposes.

In our case, that meant gathering together a group of friends and family, eating way too much INSANELY GOOD traditional Thanksgiving fare (cooked up by the good folks at Gerald's Bar, who truly outdid themselves), and talking and laughing and shouting and joking and eating and drinking and eating some more, all afternoon.

The motivation was that Em was leaving for the UK at the end of the week and wouldn't be back until after the New Year. We were a little bit devastated to miss out not only on Christmas with Em, but on the usual summer holidays we would get to spend with her. Em, likewise, would miss out on seeing all the family she normally spent time with at Christmas. So we held the whole shebang a month early and thought "what the hey, let's call it Thanksgiving."

I was over the moon because I have been trying to get my family to give this particular holiday a go for YEARS. It was such a special time for me when I lived in the US. Here's what I wrote about understanding Thanksgiving a little while back.

This was such a fun and stress-free lunch and, unlike Christmas, it was loaded with exactly zero family dramas or expectations. I guess that's one of the best things about taking on a holiday (or elements of a holiday) that belong to somebody else's culture, huh. Clean slate! No expectations! So we plan to do it again next year. And every year.

Next time I might even remember to bring the camera.

What are you thankful for?

Photo credit: Todd Quackenbush (licensed under Creative Commons)