thanksgiving · Uncategorized

Feeling Thankful?

Around Thanksgiving time I was getting super pumped. I was hired by the company I was temping at since July, Zoë was an enthusiastic social 5th grader and Emma was away in Philly finishing up her first semester of college. I had it all planned out: this Holiday season I was going to bake a wide assortment of cookies to pass out to family and friends.

I had my vintage family cookie cutters at the ready. A sharp contrast to last year when I was laid off and struggling to pay rent. I was ready to buy ribbons and boxes, make my list and check it twice.

But it was not to be. I had been walking around with a nagging pain in my right leg/hip/groin area since July. At first I chalked it up to  a shitty mattress causing me to be out of alignment. Or maybe I’m slouching at my desk, or maybe I’m old and out of shape. I could waste plenty more time “presuming” what the cause of my pain was or I could go and find out.

Work sent us home early the day before Thanksgiving so I headed to my Doctor’s office.  With visions of sugarplums dancing in my head, or at least sugar cookies…I stepped into the exam room and told the Nurse Practitioner(my Doc was on vacation) my problem. After a brief exam and a check for a hernia, she proceeded to order up: an X-Ray of my hip, an Ultrasound of my leg and a Cat Scan of my hip/abdomen. “Are you available today?” She asked. “Um, sure. I actually have a Mammogram scheduled for later. Might as well take a pic of everything!” I was trying to be funny but I must admit I was in shock. I thought she was going to send me to a chiropractor.

Off I went to have pics taken and my Nurse explaining that if they find anything they’ll call. As I went through each procedure I was hoping for some insight, a clue perhaps. If the technicians saw anything, they never let on so I finished up and headed home.

All I could do now was wait. Luckily I had a task to preoccupy my mind!

I was headed to New Hampshire for Thanksgiving with my Dad & Step-Mom and I was in charge of cranberry sauce. Mine is super simple: cranberries simmered with ginger, orange zest, sugar & splash of orange juice till the berries start to pop and the mixture starts to gel a bit. Delicious.

A trip to NH was just what I needed to keep myself from worrying about my leg/hip. My Step-Mom is part of a large, close-knit family. Holiday dinners are filled with 20 plus relatives and friends. My cousin’s Debby and Ken hosted Thanksgiving on an unseasonably warm day. We arrived, and I promptly poured some champagne.

With bubbly in hand I went outside to find Kenny grilling a Turkey in his shorts!

In addition to this smoky delicious turkey, we also enjoyed a more traditional roasted one along with the usual sides like Green Bean Casserole and my Aunt Mary’s fave:black olives(one bowl is for her!).


Of course wine is a must at this table. These were my cousin Claire’s choices:

Seeing as it was so nice out, a nice pic of my Parents had to be taken.

Desserts at these family gatherings are a serious affair. We will always have room for something new, but we expect certain desserts from certain people. My Dad’s Pumpkin Cheesecake for example. Or Deb’s Pumpkin Log.

With bellies full and my mind off of my medical mystery, my Dad and I went over to his studio to his latest paintings.

Still abstract and full of texture and dimension, but filled with more vibrant color than I had seen in a while.




Feeling very inspired to see this new direction my Dad is headed with his paintings. I love that he goes to his studio and paints every day and fills his passion.

After a good night’s sleep my Parents cooked up a yummy breakfast and we talked about what the test results might reveal. 510

Could not dwell too much on the unkown, Emma was home for a quick visit. I drove back to RI, picked her up and we headed off to some of her favorite Providence places. 511

White Electric Coffee for a cup of joe and a selfie.


Tallulah’s Taqueria for Emma’s fave Lengua Tacos and mine Barbacoa and the most scrumptious fish tacos on the East Coast.514


Ready for music, we drove over to What Cheer Records and Vintage, to say hi to the awesome owners Jen and Chris Daltry, pick up some new/old vinyl and soak in some local tunes by Dylan Sevey.



A fun filled day with my oldest and the weekend was not close to being over. The next day was Zoe’s 11th Birthday! Certainly not a time to worry.


Yes folks, that is a Carvel Ice Cream cake. It was requested and I obliged. The Birthday girl was happy and oh my goodness looking wise beyond her years. 567

Still more fun to be had……..watching my Ohio State Buckeyes play with my good luck charm Buckeye Bear by my side. 540

My children were with me, but tended to ignore me as I screamed in excitement watching Ezekial Elliot carry the ball gracefully over the goal line. To cap off the fun filled four day weekend, we went over to The Columbus Theatre to help celebrate the big (50th!) birthday of local music supporter and our pal; Brett Davey. He had an Elvis themed party. He asked local musicians to get up and sing either an Elvis Presley or Elvis Costello tune. The results were awesome and the girls and I had a blast.


My favorite act of the night was a duo: Bob Mac of The Red Pennys playing the Upright Bass and singer/songwriter, Brian McKenzie. Bringing some foot-stomping lively rockabilly to the night.543

Wow, I went to bed that Sunday night exhausted but happy. Too busy and tired to be worried. Afterall, I had to head to work the next day and hope for the best.

THANKFUL? Indeed…….full of love, full of food, full of friends and full of hope.


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