Day 16: Thankful for good friends who know that I still love them and am thinking about them even when I don't get around to actually calling or e-mailing them. I have admittedly strayed off of the grid this fall, on account of The Event. In a lot of ways, it's like life stopped for us in July, and we were transported to some alternate reality that is kind of like real life, but not. I was reminded of this in a quite tangible way when I went to the house for the first time in a long time, and I actually took the time to look at my front yard for the first time in a long time. In addition to noticing that my coleus were leggy and in need of pruning, I couldn't help but notice the red, white and blue pinwheels and patriotic garden flag - yard decor that I decided to leave out for the entire month of July. And then, in the last week of July, life ground to a halt. And the Fourth of July yard kitsch have been out on display ever since. No back to school banner, no display of hay bales and pumpkins, and - next month - no Christmas lights. Okay, straying off-topic - back to my tolerant and inexhaustably patient friends, who are probably reading this and thinking, "ENOUGH ABOUT YOUR STUPID YARD ART, ALREADY." But they don't say that out loud. Out loud, and in e-mails, they say incredibly supportive things, and they indulge me when I go ON AND ON AND ON about how much the house situation sucks, and they (hopefully) understand that this, too, shall pass, and in a couple of months I will be back in the swing of things, and will actually make it to keno, and to happy hour, and - in fact - will be overjoyed to host keno, and happy hour, so that I can utilize my new groovy copper bar sink.
Until we get back to square, thanks for putting up with me. You all know who you are.
Day 17: Thankful for the fact that my children appear to be constructed entirely of steel, with a Teflon outer coating. Story behind this one deserves its own post. And so its own post it shall be given.
Day 18: Thankful for the Crock Pot. Back in August, I committed to bringing brisket taco meat to the tailgate for the last TCU home game of the year. I distinctly remember the spouse taking me to task for committing to do anything when we were poised to have our lives disrupted, and I distinctly remember responding that I picked the last home game because surely we would be back in the house by then.
Did I mention that the insurance company extended the lease on the apartment through January 12th? Sigh. That development gets its own post, too.
But back to being thankful for the Crock Pot - specifically, my mother's oversized identical twin Crock Pots, which I just used to cook twelve pounds of brisket. Picked up the brisket and brisket fixin's on Thursday, on the way home from "Social Studies Night" at C's school (it was exciting as it sounds), then procured said Crock Pots, cut the brisket into manageable chunks and kept the meat in the fridge overnight. On Friday I went to Encore's auction fundraiser, got home at 10 pm, and fired those puppies right up. Around 4 am, I woke up thinking about the house (this happens all too often lately - I compose letters to the adjuster in my sleep), downshifted the Crock Pots from "high" to "low," and went back to sleep. Meat was done by 7 am. A little trimming, some shredding, and a bit more seasoning, and - bam! - good to go.
God bless the Crock Pot.
Day 19: Day 18 didn't find me feeling terribly thankful, due to house issues and what seemed to be a rotten day all around, for me, various members of my family and a couple of clients. Kind of wanted to skip Encore's auction, but so glad that I forced myself to indulge in some girl time. Came home in a much healthier state of mind, so on Day 19 I had to give a shout-out to the ladies of Encore, and also to Lamar the awesome Cabinet Dude and our equally awesome plumber and electrician. They show up on time, do their jobs right and bill appropriately. Exhibit A of why cloning might not be a bad idea.
Day 20: Thankful to be an Alpha Delta Pi. Spent a gorgeous (if a little windy) Saturday tailgating with TCU ADPi friends, who are just as important to me as my UT sisters are. As the day was winding down, I ran into another ADPi sister - pledge sister from Texas - who, in fact, used to own the home that my parents live in now. Small world. Being in a sorority does make life seem smaller, in a good way. Less scary. The first group I got involved with when I moved to Fort Worth was the local alumnae group. Through that group, I became involved in Fort Worth Panhellenic, and through Panhellenic I: became involved with a number of other nonprofit organizations; met my future next door neighbor, godmother to my youngest child and surrogate big sister (it's all the same person); and began friendships that I cemented after joining Junior Woman's Club and Junior League. So, if you think about it, the fact that I have put down so many roots - big HONKIN' roots - in Fort Worth in a relatively short time frame is directly attributable to my sorority. Of course, it goes much deeper than that: sorority involvement taught me leadership and interpersonal skills that I use to this day. It taught me how to be friends with other women. Well, it started that process - I didn't get good at being friends with other women until I was much older. I wasn't just an only child, I was an Army brat who moved nine times in six years. Making friends: part of my skill set from the get-go. Keeping friends: now, THAT was the difficult part. ADPi provided me with my first experiences in having, and being, a "sister." Sisters fight, they annoy each other, but they never write each other off. They continue to see the good underneath the surface.
Again, a lesson that I use to this day.
Gotta go - time to write a check to the alumnae association capital campaign.