Since landing in Berlin, one of the things I’ve looked forward to the most has been celebrating Thanksgiving, a holiday that, for me, is about family and friends and food and feel-good vibes. Each year, I look forward to planning a menu and hosting friends from America who can’t be home and friends from elsewhere who have never experienced Thanksgiving before. Last year we didn’t host because we were in the US, and so when November snuck up on me this year, naturally I wanted to go back to hosting, but because of the baby, I just didn’t really have the time or energy. Lucky for us, we had three lovely friends invite us to their celebrations. One I couldn’t make because of the timing (too late), and one of them I couldn’t make because it was kid-free, but the third one was with a friend who is like family. We celebrated a second Thanksgiving with her back in 2012, so I was happy to be invited to this year’s celebration as well.
While M. and I had our vegan duck and I made a vegan pumpkin pie, I am grateful that the three main cooks hosting the Thanksgiving made other vegan staples, such as stuffing, black-eyed peas, collard greens, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce. It was so nice to just show up, grab a glass of wine, and enjoy the time. The baby loved it too, as he got passed around and had so many new faces to study. And while I am relatively certain I’ll return to my hosting ways next year when the baby is older and I am not so stressed out, I will have this wonderful celebration to look back on (alongside the catalogue of other awesome Thanksgivings abroad) to remind me that I have a lot to be grateful for.
And because why not, here’s my Facebook status from Thanksgiving
thankful for: my four dudes (husband, baby, cats), who bring so much joy and purpose to my life; my clients, who value what i do and make it possible for me to make a living doing what i love; my solid friends for life back in the states, along with the small but amazing network of love and friendship i’ve found here; the continual support and blessing of my family after my choice to uproot my life and move thousands of miles away; living in a country with a social structure that offers unfettered access to top-notch healthcare for a low price, along with 14 months of paid parental leave; the ability of my body to not only grow a tiny little baby who is so unbelievably perfect but to also sustain and nourish him post birth; soaking in a hot bath with a new book after a long walk through a city i love.