Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Giving Thanks

Giving Thanks
On Thursday of this week, we here in the states shall celebrate Thanksgiving Day.  A marvelous tradition, even if sometimes we do have to burrow down beneath football games and feasts, holiday sales and family friction to find its true purpose, sitting unnoticed, waiting for our eventual consideration as it calmly holds out its soul-cleansing magic of gratitude.  Patriarchs will say grace over tables groaning under the weight of sweet potato casseroles and pumpkin pies.  In a truly American touch, gargantuan balloons shaped and dressed like Mickey Mouse and Underdog will float down New York streets and we shall thank the Lord for our food, our families, our freedom, our health.  
It is a day for remembering the big things with thankfulness and perhaps it serves as a reminder to notice the little things as well.  I hope so, for living in the midst of gratitude every day of the year makes for many happy days. There are a myriad of delights for which to be thankful, but they are often disguised as commonplace, so one must learn to look carefully to find them.  
 I think as I write of maple trees and autumn winds.  
The first taste of Christmas fudge.
The way the bottom of Edward’s paw smells just like Fritos.
Shakespeare and Kate Atkinson.
Leonard Cohen and Mary Oliver.
The Philadelphia Story and The Wizard of Oz.
Freshly ironed sheets.
 and, rain.
 Here are just a few more of my special thank you’s for this year.  

The Dog Sitter
Ramona is the person who moves in to stay with Edward and Apple whenever we travel without them.  She feeds them scrambled eggs.  She gives them the fish oil capsules that make their furry coats shine like new money.  She never gets her feelings hurt when Edward pouts - he only does this for a day or so.  Both dogs adore her and she’ll be joining us for dessert on Thanksgiving Day.   
And yes, that is a chimpanzee she’s holding.


The Songwriter sang at the wedding of a friend this past weekend, and I was reminded once again how much I love those ancient ceremonies.  To see two people stand facing one another, their faces lit by the love that they feel, pledging that love to the world, well... it’s incredibly moving.  
I absolutely love this photo of the recent wedding of David Lauren and Lauren Bush and I just adore that wedding dress. 
 And I may be alone in this, but it's so good to see the elegance of sleeves again.


I am grateful to be someone who enjoys her own company. 
 I don’t need a crowd to be happy. 
 I'm comfortable alone with my thoughts. 
After all, it is there, in the quiet, when the muses come. 


There is a multitude of amazing blogs today, blogs that I read as often as I possibly can.  But the one I never, ever miss is written by Angus, a transplanted Scotsman living a delightful life in a French village with his Polish Lowland Sheepdog, Wilf.  Wilf bears a striking resemblance to Edward.  Sometimes the pictures Angus posts cause me to do a double-take.  
The blog was started to chronicle the travels of both Wilf and his twin brother, Digby, but sadly, Digby passed away in 2010 after a sudden illness.  Then several months later, in a quirk of horrible timing, Wilf was diagnosed with cancer and given only three days to live. 
 That was a year and two months ago! 
 Each day since a gift, each month a miracle.

One of the best blog writers I’ve found, Angus takes us through the seemingly ordinary days of a life with an old dog, all the while freely handing us jewels of wisdom about friendship, loyalty, humour and love.  I am so grateful that Wilf has defied the odds with such heart and grace and I wish for both he and Angus a perfectly wonderful festive season.
  If you’ve yet to visit this very special twosome, you are missing a true treat. 
 Go say hello HERE.


An Ivy Covered Cottage
The Songwriter and I have an ongoing battle over the English Ivy that grows over our cottage.  
He worries that it will damage the windows and gutters if it gets out of control. 
 I find it unutterably romantic.  
We have reached a ivy truce of sorts. 
 It may clamber over the brick as much as it likes but must be trimmed when it reaches the windows or roofline.  
I can certainly live with that.  I love my ivy-covered cottage. 
But Songwriter beware,  I also love the look of the house above!

What about you?
What little thing are you thankful for today?


  1. I'm thankful - not only this time of year - but each and every day for my wonderful husband and our two westies Julep and Derby.

    Have a wonderful and grand Thanksgiving. I'll bet you'll be watching the Macy's parade on TV.

    All the best,
    Katie from

  2. Hello Pamela

    What a delightful post. Ramona appears to be a gifted dog sitter.
    I agree with you that long sleeves are very elegant.
    Thank you for introducing us to Angus.
    My husband and I have the same argument on ivy. I am in your camp.
    I am very grateful for my husband, my family, friends and my newly found blogging friends. We will celebrate at a friend's ranch, some horseback riding and then dinner
    Happy Thanksgiving
    Helen xx

  3. I am scheduled to work both Wednesday and Thursday nights of Thanksgiving; this is fine with me as 1) I can't swallow normal food (use a PEG or stomach tube) and 2) have no near family but dear friends. I would rather work and let others be with their families on this holiday while I give thanks for far flung family members, near and far friendships, my rescue and personal dogs and a job which demands much while giving much in return. I LOVE Wilf, miss Digby and wonder what Angus and the Font will do for a dog blog when Wilf finally leaves this world - what a blessing he is!
    I need a Ramona - could she handle 21 hounds? I would just like a weekend "off." LOL.

  4. Pamela,

    I am thankful for your wonderful blog, it is both a feast for the eyes and a boost for the soul. I love your writing and leave here with a smile. Through your blog I was introduced to Wilf and Digby, and Hamish who sadly passed as well as several other beautiful blogs.

    I too hope that Wilf, angus and the font have a blessed holiday!

    I myself am thankful for my wonderful family and friends, mu husband and my dog munchen. I am thankful for my education, my wonderful traveling adventures and so much more.

    Thank you for sharing your writings, your beautiful Edward and your adventures. Happy thanksgiving.


  5. Wonderful post!Yes there are so many things to be thankful for,family,friends and country. And I wholeheartedly agree with you about the elegance of sleeves.

  6. Pamela, I am thankful for so much; my wonderful family, friends like you who understand me, my health improving day by day! Life in a world filled with so much beauty.

    Love and Hugs,

    Art by Karena

  7. Thank you for this post. I grew up in a house where the brick walls were all painted white, apart from one side that was totally covered in ivy (with only the windows cut out), before my parents sold their house they removed the ivy, sanded back the bricks to remove all traces of plant life, and painted everything white again which was such a shame. When I was studying to be an architect one of the lectures always said if there was ever a bad piece of a building it should be covered up (on the drawings or in real life) with plants – but sometimes, like in the last photo in your post, despite what wonders might lie hidden beneath, plants make things so much better!

    I follow Wilf and Angus’s adventures and enjoy reading their blog.

    Thanksgiving isn’t celebrated here in New Zealand, but I am thankful for finding the world of doggie blogs as it has changed my perspective on how I see things and allowed my mind to travel to so many new places.

    Riley’s mum

  8. My husband & I read & enjoy Angus' blog every day. We enjoy all the quirky characters & stories about his life in France with his faithful companion Wilf & his wife aka the 'Font'.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you!

  9. Pamela,
    One of your best I believe. A reminder to be thankful for so many wonderful gifts. My husband and daughter, the fonts of all happiness for me, our pooch "Sookie", and I am just thankful for my life!
    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving. We too will be celebrating in the UK as I am married to an American and my daughter was born there, so 2 out of 3 ain't bad!

  10. Pamela - You've managed to exactly capture what Thanksgiving means in tbhis little French household !

  11. I am so thankful for many things, but especially also for all my blog friends I have found over the years! I hardly ever miss your wonderful writings, since your sensibilities are close to mine, but you say these things so beautiful and with such grace.
    Thank you! I will visit your friend!

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and the songwriter, Edward and Apple!

  12. I have been looking for a picture of Lauren Bush's wedding dress (don't know why I couldn't find it) . . oh my , it is just beautiful. And I am SO happy that it has sleeves! I am so very tired of sleeveless wedding gowns - actually, I never have cared much for them:) Thank you SO much for posting! Your blog (isn't there a nicer word for what you do??) is heavenly . . .

  13. I am grateful to writers like you who transport me and lift me to a higher ground. The wedding photo was beautiful and I loved the grooms look...watch chains and fobs, frock coat...handsome. beautiful photography...all the very best sweet Pamela and Edward and co.

  14. I am very grateful for your lovely writing and for being intoduced to Wilf and his family. Happy Thanksgiving.

  15. Seems a great time, Pamela, to thank you for a year's worth of lovely posts...wishing the House a lovely Thanksgiving~

  16. As usual it is very uplifting to read your blog. I popped over to leave a comment on Wilf's blog - wonderful that he is still here.
    Things to be thankful for are too numerous to mention but most of all for the fact that I am still here. It is exactly a year today since I was airlifted to hospital - and now I am well again - that is certainly enough to be thankful for. Have a love, old-fashioned thanksgiving.

  17. Lovely thoughts, Pamela, and the ivy covered house is lovely. I will visit Angus' site soon, too. I have to say that every year I look for Truman Capote's story, "A Christmas Memory" or his "The Thanksgiving Visitor" with Geraldine Page as his Aunt Sook, his closest friend from the time he was 7 yrs. old. I rarely see them televised any more, so am going to find and buy for myself the trilogy which includes "One Christmas" on DVD. I'm thankful for each new day, for the health of my family, this beautiful world, and finding your blog which never fails to touch my soul. Happy Thanksgiving.

  18. Very nice to meet you through Wilf who I check on daily. I really can relate to your blog, the whole look of it is wonderful, fairies, art, dogs, Scotland, what could be better?

  19. I loved reading your sweet, gentle, wonderful post. i too could not live without my "4 legged" friends, as i call them. As for ivy, i had to resort to drastic measures as it was taking over our cedar roof. A season later, i must report it is doing better tha ever!
    happy Thanksgiving

  20. Sending you warm and happy Thanksgiving wishes
    from Robert and me and Buster.
    Your blog with all its good things is another thing to be thankful for!
    You have such an eye for the beautiful and life enhancing.
    Let me know when you next get to new York!

  21. What a lovely Thanksgiving post. I hope your holiday celebration is wonderful. Thankful for my family and friend and also getting to know bright and interesting women in the blogosphere, such as yourself! Life is made so much richer by all of it.

  22. How I loved this, as I always, always do. Your words mean so much to me. Thank you.

  23. Firstly, I am thankful for this post, and I loved reading it. I am thankful for my family and friends, and for the simple things in life that make up the whole. Happy Thanksgiving!

  24. we have issues with ivy and dying trees and not watering enough.
    have a wonderful thanksgiving!

  25. I am thankful for the hefty log that will keep our little Victorian house warm through the night. Happy Thanksgiving!

  26. For meeting you... Of course:)
    Best wishes Pamela for a wonderful Thanksgiving to you, the Songwriter, Edward and Apple....forever and always...

  27. Right now, as my mom lies in the hospital after having a very successful surgery, my heart is overflowing with gratitude for the the glorious friends that have stood by her side and mine through this ordeal...we could not have gotten through this without them, truly a gift from God.
    Wishing you all the most beautiful & heartwarming Thanksgiving ever!!
    xo J~

  28. What a sweet and delightful post....and now I NEED to go meet Wilf!

  29. What a sweet and delightful post....and now I NEED to go meet Wilf!

  30. your posts never fail to uplift my heart and my entire day.
    i visit wilf and angus and the font each day also... wilfee looks just like my own little pon that died last september. so in a way, i'm like you with edward and the resemblance, sometimes it's like looking into my beloved zeke's face.
    i'm thankful for so much. not the least of it being people like you and angus who share your talent for writing and life appreciation and beauty and humor with the rest of us. you are special.
    my love to you on this blessed of all holidays,
    tammy j

  31. i also have a daily meeting with wilf and angus!!! aren't we so lucky?? Have a wonderful thanksgiving pamela and i truly love your ivy cottage...hide the shears from the songwriter!!!

  32. Lovely post. I am afraid I have just posted a sad poem inspired by a recent death of a friend but I promise to make my next post one of thanks giving, it is such a nice idea.

  33. I am grateful for so many things... good health, a wonderful family, pets that make me smile, work I love, a dream for my future and a husband that shares my dream, and the honor of calling you my friend. Thank you for another year of gently and beautifully describing what is important in life.
    Happy Thanksgiving to you, the Songwriter, Edward, Apple and those you love.


  34. Quick Hello, Have a great Bird day, I just love this post and
    old dogs are the best. The ivy will get under tile roofs I know,,
    I planted a ficus ivy in Fl. it did damage.


  35. Among many, many things, I'm thankful for having your wonderful blog to read! Thanks for sharing!

  36. Hello Pamela

    I am thankful for my family.

    My mom suffered a stroke almost eight months ago(she is improving every day) and my papa is fighting cancer(two types). I am so blessed to have these two special people in my life.

    Tracy :)

  37. Taking time to look carefully for the small things to be grateful for is something very dear to me x I love your Thanksgiving tradition, and wish we had it here too x

  38. Grateful that I found our wonderful blog, and grateful for this beautiful line:

    "...soul-cleansing magic of gratitude"

    Hope your Thanksgiving was a wonderful and warm as this beautiful post!

  39. I completely agree with you about sleeves back in wedding dresses. The strapless dress has had its day. Away with it, I say!

    I'm thankful that Thanksgiving falls on a Thursday. That gives us three days to recover, relax, and piddle before Monday comes around.


I love to read your comments! Each and every one! Though I'm always reading your comments, I may not respond in the comment section. If you want to write me directly, you may do so at pamela@pamelaterry.net. Thank you for reading!