With the holidays on the horizon I am looking forward to a houseful of friends and family for Thanksgiving. We cook, we gather, we eat, we laugh, we argue (and all of the other behaviors families do over holiday weekends), and we give thanks. I have vivid memories of my mother walking through the door with her somewhat dry stuffing, a rainbow jello mold right out of Better Homes and Gardens 1972, her bourbon pecan sweet potatoes, and most of all, her warm & loving energy and enthusiasm for this, and every holiday.
I miss her dearly. Mom left a legacy to all of us that loved her. She left recipes, bits of everyday wisdom, a path of memories that we still walk down, laughter, tears, and laughter with tears-the kind that makes you pee in your pants in places you shouldn't, like hotel hallways and side streets in Paris.
My mother left me something else, something that has been a surprise and a joy to me. She had more friends than anyone I know, truly. My mother kept up with her friends from grade school, college, etc., and made new ones all of the time. The surprise is that my mother left me the legacy of her girlfriends. They call me, I call them, we have lunch, we drink wine, we have dinner...
I am so grateful to have inherited what was most important to her, the legacy of her relationships.
The mother-daughter relationship is the most complex of them all, and in the end after all of the tussle and push and pull, has the most potential for real friendship. I remember my mother reading the book "My Mother, Myself" by Nancy Friday. It was a seminal book about women taking a look at themselves and really being able to differentiate from their mothers, but also seeing and knowing that there are similarities, and accepting these. The ability to integrate both the differences and the similarities is when the adult friendship can happen. Sometimes it's hard to admit we're more like our mothers than we'd like to be, and some days, I am so grateful that what pops out of my mouth is just what she would have said.
Meet Lily. She is a millennial. What does this mean, exactly?
This generation (born between 1981-2000, according to PEW
research), gets a pretty bad rap. In the media we hear about them being narcissictic, self-involed, entitled by their helicopter parents and 'everybody gets a trophy' mindset, and don't forget, they are the results of the "good job
you went to the potty!" parenting generation.
Did anyone ever get uber excited for you because you went to the bathroom? If they did, you would think you were pretty dang fantastic no matter what you accomplished, too.
Here is the catch though. These kids, these millennials, they are pretty cool and doing a really good job-to help others, and our environment, and paying it forward to the global village with their tech savvy and genuine concern about future generations. This generation is the most diverse we've ever had in our country, and cares more about diversity. They also seem to really care about their families more, and stay in contact because of texting. They like it. Does this mean that they aren't 'launching'? No, this means that they have different
The thing is, this particular millennial is my kid. I see her, and I'm with her friends, and I hear what they talk about, and they are not like my husband's sex, drug, & rock and roll generation-filled with idealistic notions, still! They are not like my "X-er" generation, practical,more conservative because of their need for stability-these millennials have a helicopter view of the world, and they have access to it from their phones, which makes their relationships, connections, and potential for success a very fluid process.
I believe these kids have it going on in a big way relationally, and they are going to do some pretty big stuff to heal the damage that we've done to our planet, too. Rock on millennials!
October brings with it the wish to linger in bed a little longer as the light is changing, and the mornings are turning a little darker. The air is crispy and fresh (although any of you in my tribe of allergy and asthma sufferers know that there is no such thing as fresh air, particularly in the fall).
Nonetheless, it is a romantic time of year. October skies are watery grey and backlight the magnificent landscape here in Ohio, and I know many other
places in the country right now.
This is the beginning of the time that we start to gather in. We start to bring in the outdoor furniture, collect the last flowers from our gardens, find sweaters and jackets, and stay inside in the evenings as the temperature drops.
I notice myself not only collecting my pots from the outside for next year, but also collecting my more expansive self and preparing for the colder seasons, getting ready to nestle in. In the summer I feel a sense of largesse in that I can move more freely about in time with less concern-no icy roads, no bundling
up. In the months to come there are more layers to be concerned with.
Right now though, in October, I enjoy the transition from outdoors to in. Picking apples, drinking a cup of tea at night
for the first time since spring, and cleaning out the pantry, getting ready to cook a little more in the days to come.
It's a good time to take some time to look and really see the colors of the leaves. October and all of its beauty is a gift
from nature, enjoy, before the snow is falling.
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