I'm thankful for good things that come in the mail! Usually it's just bills and credit card offers, but today we got this awesome Save-The-Date from our friends Emily and Jessie who are getting married next spring. We couldn't be happier for them. We're also going to be what they call "bridesmen" so we're pretty pumped about that as well. I'm thankful for love in the 21st Century. I'm thankful for the rise of marriage equality throughout our nation. I'm thankful for hot babes lying on the beach! Hubba hubba!
Monday, November 25, 2013
Sunday, November 24, 2013
I'm thankful for time. Yes, time. I'm thankful that I've been granted time here on this planet. I'm grateful for my life. This life. Here and now as the clock ticks by, turning seconds into moments into memories. And as exciting as the 1920s might seem to be--with the jazz and the flappers and the style--I'm grateful to have been born in the era that I was born in. Most of the time. I'm thankful for the time I get to spend with Brian, even if it's squeezed between laundry and work and baking macarons. Even if it's only after 11:00 PM. I'm thankful that I've got hours to write in, hours to read, hours to play. I'm thankful that I live in a time when I can use my phone to chat with Chileans on Facebook, call my mom in Idaho, text my dad in Colorado and see a photo of my niece. All while emailing a professor as I walk to my car. I'm thankful that time comes in phases, with each new day or month or year bringing new challenges and new self-identities. I'm thankful I have the time to be thankful.
Monday, November 18, 2013
I'm thankful for The Madison, a local club in downtown Provo. As a member of the Provo Pride Council, I couldn't be more grateful for their unyielding support of the gay community. They've let us use their space for free during numerous fundraisers and even hosted the very first Righteous Miss Provo Pageant and the Official Pride After-Party. Since then, they've been hosting a monthly drag show every third Monday featuring the Divine Sister-Misters. Seriously, The Madison is amazing. I'm also thankful for the opportunity to see my friends perform, for sequins and high-heels and wigs... and we're all thankful for dim lighting!
Saturday, November 16, 2013
I'm thankful for friends. One of our friends, Wes, had been going through a rough time. He lives in Salt Lake City now so we don't see him as much as we'd like. We saw him briefly today and it made my heart happy. He's so great. We also saw our friends Annette and Rebecca in the afternoon while delivering macarons and then saw a movie with Nick and Kyle. David joined us later for a bit of Cards Against Humanity. It was a great night, ending with a wild drive to McDonald's, weaving in and out of traffic while blasting The Prince of Egypt soundtrack. Dollar Menu for the win.
Friday, November 15, 2013
I'm thankful for margaritas. I'm also thankful for friends like Tara who buy me margaritas. I'm thankful for Brian and my coworkers and friends who join me for such a beverage from time to time. Just time to time, Mom. I promise I'm not an alcoholic! I'm thankful for the folks at La Casita in Springville who make such a delicious (and strong) margarita on the rocks. 1 = tipsy; 2 = falling face-first into the calle. We at Zales go so often that the waitress recognizes us. She knows what we want. We feel cool. It's kind of a hole-in-the-wall, but it's fun. We laugh, gossip, eat, and smile. Sometimes our La Casita antics are put down in history in the form of Instagram videos... embarrassing Instagram videos. Thanks, Tara. Thanks a lot.
Monday, November 11, 2013
I'm thankful for dreams. At work we have a Dream Board, a suggestion from our district manager. It's meant to remind us of the true things we work for. The things we hope to accomplish. Matt dreams of going to the beach someday and learning how to surf. Tara dreams of a beautiful home with color-coordinated couches and cushions and curtains. Kord dreams of being Batman. I dream that Macaron can get off the ground, and I'm thankful for how far we've come so far. I'm thankful that the state has approved our recipes, leading the way towards our inspection. I'm thankful for our friends who keep us busy filling out new orders and promoting us through social media. I'm thankful for Brian's talents in the kitchen and his ability to stay calm and reassure me that all will work out. He knows that our dreams will come true. Our dreams of being financially stable and independent. Our dreams of travelling back to the Big Apple again or living someplace exciting. Our dreams of adopting children and forming our family. I'm thankful for dreams and the opportunities presented me to make them a reality if I'm willing to do the work.
Sunday, November 10, 2013
I'm thankful for home-cooked meals! I'm thankful to be married to a man that can cook! The kitchen might be in a constant state of disarray, but I'm thankful for the smells wafting through the apartment. I'm thankful for the delicious meals. Tonight was fried chicken with mashed potatoes and carrots. Some nights it's stir fry. Other nights it's pork chops. Pasta, homemade brownies, waffles or Buffalo wings. Fresh guacamole. Pumpkin soup. You name it, he'll make it. I'm thankful that we can afford groceries. I'm thankful we can borrow from his mother's pantry at times. Or his father's garden. I'm thankful that I can contribute by at least washing the dishes. I'm thankful that I've never gone hungry in my life. I'm thankful for comfort food. I'm thankful for comfort.
Saturday, November 9, 2013
I'm thankful for weddings. My friend Krystal got married today to a wonderful man named Treven--a man I hope will take good care of her. They've both been married before and they both have children, so this is a merging of two families. I'm thankful for second chances in life. I'm thankful for fresh starts. And I'm thankful to share an anniversary with these two. One year ago today Brian and I were married in New York City. It was a wonderful experience and we couldn't be happier. Our first year together has had its share of trials, but it has had more good days than bad. I'm really thankful for the good days. I'm thankful that laws are changing in this country to allow for my marriage. I'm thankful for progress. I'm thankful for love.
Friday, November 8, 2013
I'm thankful to have a car to drive. His name is Urkel, after Steve Urkel, as a nod to the car's decade and general geekiness. I'm thankful for my friend Zeek who bought a way cooler new car and sold me his old one. I'm thankful for my mom and stepdad who loaned me the money to buy it from him. I'm thankful for all the work those 90's engineers at Toyota did when they made this car 23 years ago. I'm thankful for sunny days even in November. I'm thankful that the roads aren't icy and snowy yet. I realize that for posting this I will be cursed with both ice and snow tomorrow. I'm thankful that winter doesn't last forever. I'm thankful that I'm not riding the bus anymore... although sometimes I miss the people-watching.
Thursday, November 7, 2013
I'm thankful for my coworkers who make life in the jewelry business a little more fun. I'm thankful that we all get along and that we are all equally crazy, silly and immature. Like when I'm busy helping a customer, these two take my phone and set the above photo as my new wallpaper. I'm thankful for our Zales Quote Book, which has hilarious entries such as: "Get down on your knees and eat me!" or "I'm mo-la-la-la-la-la-lesting you!" and "I need $111... that's 10 dalmations more than a Disney movie." I'm thankful that HR has not found said book. I'm thankful our new manager turned out to be a nice guy and puts up with us. I'm thankful I don't feel 27. I'm thankful that Tara, my Work Wife, sends me text messages that say, "I get a open wit ma nigga/boo," when we find out we work the same shift. I'm thankful to be employed, even if I complain about it half the time. My work peeps make everything better.
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
I'm thankful for passionate professors who make learning fun, who inspire me to be a better writer, who won't let me give up on myself. I'm thankful for professors that push me to test the limits of my own imagination--professors like Karin Anderson or Laura Hamblin or Christa Albrecht-Crane all of whom I have secretly (or maybe not-so-secretly) adored. Digging through their garbage isn't weird, is it? I'm thankful for my fellow English majors who give me good feedback in workshops, who stress with me about project deadlines and who can quote Hemingway or Shakespeare with ease. I'm thankful for our conversations in the hallways, our cheery hellos, our laughter in the classroom. I'm thankful to be a student.
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
I'm thankful for NaNoWriMo, which stands for National Novel Writing Month. It's this crazy thing that some of us writers do. We attempt to write a novel of 50,000 words in 30 days. I've attempted it before and was even successful once. It was absolute shit, but it hit the word quota. That being said, I'm thankful for the delete button. I'm also thankful for hot chocolate, Microsoft Word, books and authors that inspire me, the support of my husband and--most importantly--my imagination. I'm thankful for Jack and the Beanstalk, my main inspiration for this tale I've been tackling for the last few years. I'm thankful for words and letters and metaphors and punctuation. I'm thankful for poetry and imagery. I'm thankful for the English language and the beauty that is the phrase "cellar door."
Monday, November 4, 2013
I'm thankful that Christmas comes earlier and earlier every year. I know I'm supposed to grumble and bah humbug, but I just love it. I love the word festive. I love fa la la la la. I love Christmas trees and ornaments and ribbons and bows. I love the way stores glitter at Christmas--consumerism at its most alluring. Its most magical. I'm thankful for Santa Claus, and believing, and wishes come true. I'm thankful for childlike wonder. I'm thankful for the little boy that said, pointing towards the men on the crane while tugging on his mother's shirt, "They're making Christmas."
Sunday, November 3, 2013
I'm thankful for delicious treats, especially macarons! Earlier this year, Brian made macarons at his job with Culinary Crafts which sparked an interest in the highly-fussy and high-end French delicacy. He began to make them at home, trying recipe after recipe. Months later he had perfected them and I couldn't be any prouder of all his hard work. His expertise has inspired a business, and I love working with him towards that goal. Going on a business venture with my husband has been extremely gratifying. Not only do we get to do something together, but we each get to shine in our individual talents. Brian's amazing in the kitchen and his product is tasty and beautiful. I'm good with the visuals, taking pictures, playing with fonts, etc. I get to populate our social media outlets with photos and promotions. I get to design our packaging and our business cards. I do the fun stuff. But when people say that they love our cookies, I just smile and say, "It's all Brian."
Saturday, November 2, 2013
I'm thankful for my husband, Brian, and the fun times we have together. Like our first-ever trip to Wendover, Nevada. We went with the Provo Pride Fun Bus today and boy was it ever fun. We filled up our red Solo cups with margaritas and chatted up other gay and gay-friendly Utah County citizens as we drove northwest towards our destination. Once there Brian learned to play Blackjack and I learned how to say no to desserts at an all-you-can-eat buffet. It's harder than it looks. I'm thankful for the group of people we went with, most of whom I met through my work with the Provo Pride Council. I'm thankful for the transgendered and the gender-queer. I'm thankful for the straight, the bisexual, the bi-curious and the gay. I'm thankful for those who resist gender stereotypes, who fight for equality in our community, who refuse to be marginalized. I'm thankful for men in floppy, white sun hats who are thrown out of BYU-housing. I'm thankful for straight bandmembers who played at our wedding reception and ours only. I'm thankful for fat comedians and gay florists and Japanese-manga-reading women who tell me of their love lives, who sit with me or hug me or tell us that we're their favorite gay married couple.
I'm thankful for my husband, Brian... or have I mentioned that already?
Friday, November 1, 2013
I'm thankful for family--that blood that flows mutually between us, around us and within us. The blood that passes down from generation to generation. When I bleed, they bleed. When they bleed, I bleed. I'm thankful for my baby niece, Amaya, who just turned a year old in October. I'm thankful for her mother, my sweet sister, who brought her into my life... giving me yet another part of Renee to love and hold. I'm thankful for her husband, Jaylon, who loves his family in a way that is truly manly and honorable and good. I'm thankful for my mother and my father, both of which are deeply flawed and deeply beautiful. I'm thankful for nights spent helping me with homework, shouldering my tears, putting up with my bad attitudes and passing fads and idiosyncrasies. I'm thankful for my brother, Daniel, whose love for me speaks far louder than his words. He's so quiet and calm. But when we're together he hugs me tight and I appreciate it. I'm thankful for his wife, Sofia, who loves him. I'm thankful for my stepdad and stepmom, my stepbrother and stepsisters. I'm thankful to be a part of a family that's multi-racial, multi-political and multi-religious. A "true Modern Family" as my father puts it. I'm thankful that baby Amaya gets to be a part of this kaleidoscopic quilt of promises and oaths and commitments. There's sometimes heartache, that's for sure, but it's that ache that keeps us trying.