List #231: Thankful

When I lived in Greece many years ago, I asked my students what they thought Thanksgiving was about in America. They told me it was America's way to practice for Christmas.

The holiday homesickness was settling in around that time. I would not be returning home for Christmas and knowing that all of my loved ones were busy doing American things was sad. So I got my friends together and we had a Thanksgiving party in biggest apartment. We bought chicken breasts, I cooked some type of couscous dish, we had green beans (maybe), and corn, and wine. Someone brought Ferrer Roche and it was warm enough for us to be able to drink on the balcony.  Actually, I think it was really starting to get cold that night, but we went out on the balcony anyway.

That year I was thankful for Greek beaches, Vodophone, retzina, new friends, weekends off, and family and friends who wrote me emails, chatted with me on AOL Instant Messenger, and supported my adventure. Often when I think about that time now, I can't believe I actually did it. It seems so far away, so much a part of life that was almost like a movie. I was watching it all unfold, experiencing the plot twists, but the fine details seem blurry now like I almost didn't touch them at all.

Lots of things have happened since the year I tried to share American tradition with the Brits, the French, and the Greek. And there is so much more for which to be thankful:

  • Family. Who make me laugh, always support my decisions, and cheer on new directions.
  • Friends. Who feel like family.
  • The boyfriend. Who makes me laugh, is so kind and considerate, and who likes to read in bed too.
  • A baby. Who is nothing but giggles and smiles.
  • My job. That is fulfilling and thrilling and different every day.
  • Radley Cat. Who is so ridiculous that his favorite toys are coffee stirs and bottle brushes.
  • A warm house. With bright windows and a big couch. 
  • Great coworkers. Who are good teammates and often friends. 
  • Books. Because I appreciate the freedom to read and learn.
And, a whole bunch of small things that kind of sound like a list that could be written at preschool storytime:

  • lip gloss, a fixed desk chair, conditioner, gloves, scented candles, Chinese takeout, tights, flowers, Coca-cola, tea, board games, dresses, the Sunday paper, and purses.
Happiest of Thanksgivings to you. 


List #230: Cha-Cha-Changes...of the address variety

This weekend I did this.
I own many pairs of shoes and assorted children's toys.

So as of right now, my apartment looks something like this.
We found 1 bent knitting needle, a lone purple crayon, dusty lightbulbs, a lot of sunscreen, and eventually the matching knitting needle. Also bent. And found in a different closet. 
Related: The boyfriend is a very patient man. 

When I moved into my apartment nearly two years ago, I assumed that any man I date would have the lesser abode. I thought my mediocre apartment with a retro farmhouse sink and really ugly carpet would win out because it was spacious and warm and didn't include roommates and wasn't a place for hoarders. Based on some of my previous experience, this assumption was not farfetched. 

However, that assumption turned out to be wrong. And now I am moving in with the boyfriend. 

The space will be tiny-ish, the neighborhood convenient but not permanent, our neighbors younger than us. It will be filled with too many clothes, lots of bottles, tea mugs on the coffee table, and bottles of water under bedside lamps. But we're making it ours. 

And in doing so, many things have happened:
  • We've been to Ikea twice in one day.
  • The cat has lived here for three weeks.
  • Three closets have been emptied.
  • We've wondered if someone is randomly shaving in my bathroom.
  • New keys have been made.
  • A cat escaped his carrier.
  • An ongoing battle of stray litter has begun.
  • A kitchen has been painted.
  • Tile has been selected and purchased.
  • Shelves await installation.
  • Brownies have been baked.
  • The house has been taken over by pine-scented soaps and candles.
  • Laundry has been forgotten.
  • One Hallmark movie has been watched.
  • The New York Times has been delivered. 
  • Parents have brunched.
  • And so many other things.
But somewhere along the way, my apartment started to feel like a storage place and not my home. My bed became the one that didn't provide a restful night's sleep. And the better shampoo was found in his shower, not mine. 

There is still more time before the keys to my place get turned over to the landlord. In fact, I'll still have the apartment for a few more months. But all of my clothes are gone and the rest of its contents is slowly being emptied. 

I'm getting used to calling this place home. The boyfriend seems to like having me here. And Radley is making himself comfortable.


List #229: Things I Shouldn't Tell Anyone (And a Few Things Everyone Should Know)

  • I find myself watching Toddlers & Tiaras more often than one should.
  • I have no idea what the fox says.
  • I miss my bubbie when I sleep at the boyfriend's.
  • Blue cheese makes me throw up in my mouth.
  • Sometimes I'll wear my tights twice before washing them.
  • I have no problem eating a stray peanut M&M from the bottom of my purse.
  • I've been reading a monthly horoscope for years.
  • I'm really glad that Halloween is over.
  • I haven't listened to Christmas music yet (and I won't) but I really really want to.
  • I've lost the guts to wear colorful tights.
  • Sometimes I forget to turn out lights.
  • I should learn to cook more things.
  • I think Modern Family is overrated.
  • I often find myself singing the theme song to Full House in the shower. 
  • I still love being a librarian.
  • I still love making out.
  • I don't like dessert wine.
  • I've never had Mad Mex's Gobblerito.
  • Tights are always better than pants.
  • I will never say no to nachos.
  • I snore.
  • I have only watched episode of SNL this season. 
  • I've fallen asleep before 9:00 pm on a Saturday night. Recently.