Seven Reasons to Be Grateful This Thanksgiving: Starting With the Rain, a Leaky Dishwasher, and You

An open 2000 Maytag Jetclean Quiet Plus dishwasher with racks visible that finally wore out after 14 years. Photo by Barbara Newhall

Our 2000 Maytag sprang a leak after fourteen years of service. Photo by Barbara Newhall

By Barbara Falconer Newhall

Some reasons to be grateful this Thanksgiving:

One. Stuffing! Stuffing alone would make the Thanksgiving Day meal my favorite of the year. But at our house there’s a bonus — pumpkin pie.

Two. A leaky dishwasher. Our 14-year-old Maytag dribbled water onto the kitchen floor and through it to the ceiling of my office below. Why am I grateful? Because the old dishwasher gave up the ghost three weeks ago, and not on the day before Thanksgiving.

a 2014 Kenmore Elite dishwasher with stainless steel face and hidden controls. Photo by Barbara Newhall

Our new dishwasher, a Kenmore with de rigueur stainless steel facade, is disturbingly quiet. Is it really washing the dishes? So far, they’ve come out clean. Photo by Barbara Newhall

Three. Rain. Lots of good rain last week, enough to turn the California hills green for the holidays.

Four. Wrestling with God: Stories of Doubt and Faith. The manuscript is finished. My editor at Patheos Press has edited it. Religion writer Don Lattin (Distilled Spirits, The Harvard Psychedelic Club) has written the foreword. And the publication date is set: Feb. 3, 2015.

Five. Friends and family. So many people have loved me over the years, some of them are alive today, some not.

Six. You. Yes, you dear reader. If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t get to chatter away every week, happy in the knowledge that somebody, somewhere is taking me seriously.

Seven. More stuffing! I’m going to have seconds. Thirds, if no one is looking.

To see what a California drought can look like, go to “For Wetter, For Drier, I’m Married to California.”  My 2012 thanksgivings are at “I’m Thankful for a Clean Oven, Fresh Ice Cubes . . . and a Daughter-in-Law to Be.”

The branches of a mature San Francisco Bay Area Monterey pine in the misty light of a November rain. Photo by Barbara Newhall

I’m also grateful for our neighbor’s beautiful Monterey pine, which they keep pruned so nicely. Here, in the misty light of last week’s rain. Photo by Barbara Newhall



  1. Mike Shaler says:

    Feb. 2015 pub date! Very nice! Thankful to have once been in a writers’ group with you.

  2. Well, I am thankful for your lovely blogposts, which have been a pleasure to read this past year. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

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