Sunday, November 25, 2012

Post Thanksgiving Thanks


Did you know there's such a thing as a Thanks-tini? Sadly, it sounds completely disgusting. There are few things I won't mix with alcohol and try to drink, but I can't even see the flavor potential in taking a perfectly good vodka and cranberry and mixing in bouillon. So here's what I did instead, in the midst of Thanksgiving dinner prep.



  • 1.5 oz cranberry-infused vodka (I did my own)
  • .5 oz Domaine de Canton ginger liqueur
  • 1/2 oz lemon juice
  • 1/4 oz (or to taste) simple syrup
  • Sparkling wine (I had Prosecco)
Shake first 4 ingredients with ice, strain into a chilled champagne flute, top with sparkling wine. Festive, with no lingering notes of onion.

This libation came in very handy this Thanksgiving, because the kids asked me to invite their dad, and he came. It was actually fine, though part of my incentive was admittedly just to get rid of some of the leftovers. I'm thankful that my ex and I have a decent enough rapport that we can give the kids a "normal" Thanksgiving dinner. Though without any sloppy-drunk relatives or contentious political debates, perhaps their vision of normal is going to be a totally warped.

Anyway, everyone blogged this weekend about that for which they're thankful, and I have many blessings to be sure. But one thing has been jumping out at me lately. I'm really thankful that my kids are out of the baby-to-preschool phase. Don't get me wrong, I love little ones, and I have many fond memories of my kids in those phases. I especially miss baby feet and baby cheeks. They're so plump and cute and delectable, and I could nibble them all day as a snack. I often wish I could go back in time and re-experience a day of my children's babyhoods. I would appreciate it a lot more now, because I know how fleeting it was. Of course, I'm selectively forgetting the sleepless nights, the bleeding nipples, the diapers, and then the technicolor tantrums that ensued when Tweak (then 18 months) realized that we really weren't going to send Tink back whence she came. But who doesn't get amnesia from one little sniff of newborn baby head?

Stop. My ovaries hurt. Just ... stop.
Now, my kids manage their own excretory functions. They feed and dress themselves. Granted, there's a lot of feigned helplessness in the areas of household chores and shoe-tying, but you can have very interesting conversations with these little people. They ask questions that I sometimes struggle to answer, what with the need to invoke quantum physics or ancient Middle Eastern mythology or the theory of evolution and whatnot. I love this about them.

Best of all, they often want to read books and watch movies that don't give me seizures. After all the years of The Wiggles and Elmo (don't get me started) and Blue and that bitch Dora, we have finally emerged to Phineas and Ferb and Narnia and Harry Potter and Lemony Snicket and Madeline L'Engle. When we sat down to read A Wrinkle in Time together, I almost wept. The only analogy I can think is maybe when a man takes his son to his first baseball game.

Thankfully, they're still my babies for a little longer. They like to cuddle and play with dolls and stuffed animals, and I can still heal boo-boos with a kiss. Whenever either has any kind of performance, I see them scanning the audience for my face, and my heart soars. I'm glad that we have this in between time, past the state of absolute dependence, but before they start constantly trying to separate and define themselves without me.

That will be a necessary phase, too, and I know it will have its upsides and downsides just like all the others. At the moment, though, I count myself blessed by where we are right now.


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