Image via WikipediaHappy Thanksgiving!
Well, the house is almost clean. Not quite. But no one can argue that I haven't been busy today. All you have to do is breathe and you'll notice a delectable aroma, as orange, apple and cranberries simmer on the stove. The onion and celery are chopped for tomorrow's dressing, and one pie is out of the oven. Another will get made after the kids come home from school – early today, in anticipation of tomorrow’s holiday.
I have a bit more to do before I’m ready for company in a few hours, but here I am writing a blog post instead of vacuuming. I have to write this down, because my heart is full this Thanksgiving. Looking back over the past year, I have a lot to be thankful for: my family, our health, friendships old and new, good times, full bellies, a warm church family, and a home. When you know what it’s like to lack any of these things, you understand how rich these blessings are.
Then there are the little things: the beauty of the crimson-leafed tree outside my window; the tea roses my husband brought me last week when I got some sad news; the fact that I have a husband who'd bring me tea roses; good books and movies; the kids’ giggles; a new package of eye shadow…Nothing is too small to thank God for. He’s given it all to me.
He’s also given me a lot of blessings with my writing this year: another contest final; my first conference; my first agent pitch to a woman who’s now my friend; and friendships with fellow writers, including the darling and talented Gina Welborn, who asked me to be part of her group blog, Inkwell Inspirations. Those things have changed my life.
God’s given me a bounty in the past year, and this week, He’s given me a something new: a blank page, if you will. A chance to start something fresh.
Change is a little rough for me. For the past eighteen months, I’ve had a goal in front of me. My Regency-set series (manuscripts and notes) was stacked at my right, and so many books on English history and landscape were piled on my left side that I should be thankful indeed that we didn't have an earthquake, or I'd have been buried under them. The books aren’t going that far, just on the shelf, but this last week, I made the decision to move my Regency series. With no more fanfare than a sigh, I put my two contest-finaling stories into a file. I’m not saying goodbye to them forever. They’re going into what my agent friend calls my Inventory. Sounds more impressive than the yellow file folders they’re actually sitting in, doesn’t it?
The files are close and accessible, should I find a nugget of research or have a thought about a character or plot point. And maybe someday, I can finish them and maybe, maybe, God will even allow their publication. But I came to the point where I’ve worked on them a long time, and I had to choose whether these were the only two novels I’d ever write and re-write until I’m dead. Or give up.
After I made my decision this week, I cleaned the office (this feat is probably on my husband’s “Thankful For” list). The space is fresh, tidy, and clean, all ready for me to begin researching and plotting a California-set historical on Monday.
I’m not giving up.
No matter what ups and downs there are in my life, my attitude must be one of thanks to God, Who’s sustained me through it all. I have so much to be thankful for, and this year I’m also thankful for you. May you be blessed this year as you rejoice in all that God has granted to you.