Each year, we set aside a little time apart from cooking, eating, and mixing cocktails in order to give thanks for all of the blessings in our lives. Here they are, in no particular order:
Malcolm: Madagascar Vanilla Almond Kind bars. McDonald’s cheeseburgers. Breakfast with just the girls on Tuesday mornings. Bull Moose Records. All of the local media, who saw fit to support my transition from “trying to be funny about food on the internet” to “cooking food professionally.” Kickstarter. Having limitless access to Wasses hot dogs. The Bangor Daily News (and particularly Abigail Curtis). Down East. The Pen Bay Pilot. Eater Maine, who named ‘Wich, Please “Hottest Restaurant in Maine” for 2015. Mayonnaise. Sambal. Sambal mayonnaise. DMX. Tom and Lisa at Comida, who helped me figure out how to keep the doors open all winter long. Curtis Custom Meats. Maine Street Meats. Main Street Markets, and particularly their avocado toast. Swedish automakers. The “Valencia” filter in Instagram. The Willow Bake Shop. Chalk markers. All of the customers that come visit me each day, who could spend their lunchtime dollar anywhere, but choose us. For my brothers and sisters, who I don’t see as often as I’d like, but who I love and miss very much. For the relationships we strengthened out West, during our short time in Southern California. For Sebastian, my new ginger godson, and for his parents. For our friends, scattered across the globe as they may be. For Violet Maeve, the hilarious little girl I want to spend all of my free time with. For Mina Lyon, who roars ferociously and looks just like her mom. And for Jillian, who continues to surprise me and makes me laugh, every single day.
Jillian: Bubble baths. Down comforters. Davis Point Road. Main Street, Rockland, Maine, USA. Rock City Coffee, Hello Hello Books. Avocado toast. The Atlantic Ocean. The Sunday Times. All the libraries. The ability to write checks to cover overdue fines. Old friends, some of whom had babies this year and are now moms, and Holy Hannah all the babies. A new generation. New friends, neighbors, fellow moms, not moms, women who are cool and smart and interesting. Figuring it out together. This community. Gin. Seasons. Dustings of snow. Secret beaches. Pine trees and coves. Wild girls. Violet asking everyone at the table what their favorite bird is (hers is parrot). Violet being hilarious and helpful and kind. Reading to her at night in her starlit room. Work, which has slowly, slowly become meaningful and gratifying. Muses. Podcasts. Records. Old family. New family, like Mina, who continues to be the happiest, silliest, most incorrigible baby I’ve ever met. Realizing that even though it’s so much harder than it’s ever been ever, my life now is so joyful. My health. Peace and freedom and those who fight and struggle for it. Madewell Jeans. And for Malcolm, who is brave and handsome and makes me laugh my pants off every day, even after sixteen years.