It’s my birthday!!
I love my birthday. Celebrating another year of life gives me the opportunity to consider all the things for which I’m deeply grateful, to mark the beginning of my New Year, and to extend wishes to the Universe to send more peace, prosperity, adventure, love, good health, and friendship my way.
Let’s celebrate together! I’ll list 36 things I’m grateful for, and I invite you to list in the comments anything that brings you joy and blessings!
In no particular order, here are 36 amazing things to be thankful for:
1—6: My family! My mother is not only my beloved mama, but one of my very best friends. My father inspires me to be my best self every day. My brother exhibits grace and resilience and makes me very, very proud. And these three silly kitties, Mirren, Houdini, and Blossom! They’re cuddly and funny and fun and demanding and exasperating and maddening and loving and hilarious.
7: Dear Dutra, who is also cuddly and funny and fun and demanding and exasperating and maddening and loving and hilarious.
8—16: My wonderful girlfriends. Leah, who advises, counsels, guides, amuses, entertains, and uplifts, and breaks my heart open. Caseylin, who is proving herself to be a warrior every day, and is going to be such a beautiful mother, inside and out. Jamalieh, who is a creative genius and who motivates me to keep practicing and focusing on what’s most important. Elena, who soothes my spirit and awes me. Melissa, who is intrepid and brave and wise and as funny as ever. Michelle, who makes me laugh and cry, often at the same time, and in whose company I am my best self. Giovanna, who is crazy brilliant and ever surprising. Maggie, who is so lovely and kind and warm and wise. Bianca, who I think is as tough and devoted a girl as I’ve ever known.
18: This super secret detail about the view out my living room window. Notice the children’s toys? That’s because there’s a daycare right downstairs, so all day, I get to hear children laughing and playing outside my window, which I love:
19: Getting to live in New York! I LIVE in New York! I know that 8 million other people do, too, but this still feels like a miraculous circumstance!
20: Discovering Oaxaca Tacos in my first week in Brooklyn! DEEEEEElicious!
21: Finding an awesome apartment in Park Slope! I love my apartment and I really really love my neighborhood, which I discover is more rad (yes, RAD!) every day. Really, I couldn’t have landed in a better place.
22—25: The Brooklyn Botanical Gardens, the Brooklyn Public Library, Park Slope Food Coop, and BAM, which are all ridiculously close by.
26: The F line. My line. Takes me most everywhere I need to go, and doesn’t seem to be a grumpy line, like the G. (Sorry, G.)
27a and 27b: MAINE and Renaissance Voices. As I said, this list is in no particular order, so my dear, sweet, peaceful, gentle, kind, supportive, nurturing, magical state of Maine could be first on the list. It could be the entire list. How grateful I am that Maine came into my life, along with my most adored Renaissance Voices choir, which is also dear, sweet, peaceful, gentle, kind, supportive, nurturing, and magical.
28—30: Cornish College of the Arts, The Salt Institute, and Vermont College of Fine Arts — the wonderful places that have educated me and prepared me for whatever adventures and opportunities await.
31: My body. I am grateful for my imperfect, flawed, idiosyncratic feet, legs, spine, neck, and shoulders. They’ve been through a lot, but I’m walking and biking and dancing, and I AM SO GRATEFUL.
32: Kate Christensen. I’ve narrated more than 200 audiobooks, but never had I had an experience like that of narrating her Blue Plate Special. I can’t wait for her book to be released, and for readers and listeners to get to know her joyful, huge spirit.
33: My clients — all those publishers, producers, and directors who have given me so much opportunity and trust and faith and patience and support. I would not be anywhere without them.
34: Pat Fraley and Hillary Huber, who set me off on this audiobook journey, shepherding and encouraging me and helping me hone my skills. They’ve become life-long friends and without them, this path would have been far rockier, and much lonelier.
35: Stephen McLaughlin, who directed all of my first books, and has been one of the kindest, most supportive, forgiving, loving friends anyone could ever ask for.
36: Language — written, spoken, read, heard, sung — my greatest joy.
And one to grow on:
37: The ARCHERS! My favorite, favorite, favorite thing in the world.
Your turn. What are you going to celebrate today?