I started this so I guess I should keep doing it even though it's impossible to adequately express my gratitude for the most important things like family and friends.
Days 9 through 15 of Thanksgiving:
I am thankful for the Cook family. My much younger cousins have somehow persevered in believing that I am a fun person. I'll admit, there were brief moments throughout their childhood during which I mustered the energy to be fun. But for the most part I'm the tired grump sitting on the couch chatting with the grown ups. I am thankful for their continued assurance that I can be fun if I just make up my mind to be. I am also thankful for their parents who were in the "fun" grown up position when my brother and I were kids. They willingly participated in synchronized swimming competitions and the ten foot pole game (until I decided to start throwing the pole). Definitely fun people.
I am thankful for my landlords whom I frequently overhear saying great things like, "If the theology you are learning does not affect the way you live your life then it's not a true theology." They share their dinner with me several nights per month, listen to my venting, and provide sound advice. One of their baby's few words is Jesus and he has started picking up a little wooden crucifix on a stand in their living room and kissing it. He did this when they were about to leave the other day and his parents told him "That's so sweet! Now we're leaving Jesus here." "But he's still with us." "That's right! He's coming with us because we're among the Baptized!" Now that's what we call a Domestic Church.
--- 11 ---
I am thankful for my vacuum cleaner, which sucks up all the creepy bugs that I don't want to smoosh. Some day I may transition to the bug gun which supposedly catches the bug in a chamber so that it can be released back into the wild. I guess it's like the bug version of a have-a-heart trap.
--- 12 ---
I am thankful for Freecyle through which I received an amazing bright yellow desk and chair. I also ditched some weird things that have moved around with me since college, including some awkwardly sized poster frames which had never even been opened AND the broken down remains of the wooden loft bed that I used in NH.
I am thankful for my car, which has treated me well during five years of service. I'm really hoping to get to and from VT at Thanksgiving and Christmas without spinning off the road like that one other time. But that reminds me that I'm also thankful for AAA and the state trooper who helped me.
I am thankful for a place to live, for heat and blankets and winter coats and hats and scarves and mittens--all of the things that keep me warm so that snowflakes are a blessing rather than a curse. I am thankful for the masterpiece of creation in which no design was ever repeated. And I am thankful for the photographs of Snowflake Bentley, a really awesome Vermonter.
--- 15 ---
I am thankful for my friend Jeremy and all the seminarians at Mount St. Mary's. So far I've met at least five of the other guys and they're all amazing. I can't wait to see Jeremy's story when the Spes Nostra video comes out!