This is the smallest Thanksgiving we've had since... since we were first married. And actually, we liked it that way. There was no schedule to keep, we were extremely casual in our dining, we didn't have to make the house especially presentable and we didn't have to go anywhere.
Over the nearly 20 years that we've been married, we've had Thanksgiving with various friends and family members, sometimes at our house and sometimes at the homes of others. In the past few years, our closest relatives have been doing their own thing, so it's just been us and our kids. But then on Saturday evening after Thanksgiving, we have some friends who throw an After-Thanksgiving-Leftovers-Party.
This is a wonderful idea because it is low key and you can bring anything you want. It doesn't have the coziness and intimacy associated with Thanksgiving, but it has all the fun and celebration of more like a New Year's Eve Party.
But yesterday, in thinking about all the things for which I'm thankful, I found that good friends is up near the top of my list. Having lived all over the country I have left friends here and there along the way. Consequently, I've suffered through many good-byes, but I also have people to visit if/when I go back. I'm thinking of my friend Lori, in Colorado; my friends Connie, Bob & Nicole and Kelley & Evan in San Diego; my friend Kellie in Missouri; my friends Debbie and Jackie in Virginia; my friend Becky right here in my neighborhood; not to mention all my Internet Friends I talked about earlier this month. Those online friends have become real life friends and they know who they are.
There is also my very special friend, Michelle, who died a few years ago, but whose voice I can still hear when I wonder "what Michelle would say about that." Her death at a young age was a shock and still is, and I will never forget her.
What would life be without our friends? I've sat here trying to write a sentence summing up what my friends mean to me, and I find I don't have the words. Of course I think of my husband as my best friend, and he is, but my other friends, even the ones I don't see or talk to regularly, have been there for me at times when perhaps my husband wasn't around (Navy deployments) or if HE happened to be the one I was mad at (not that that's ever happened). :)
My friends have helped to make me who I am today. Thank you, friends. I couldn't survive this crazy world without you.
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