On this, the first of what will (hopefully) be many Thanksgiving holidays here at Red’s Kitchen Diaries, I would like to say thank you to my friends – both old and new, in-person and virtual – and my family who have been following me as I started my blog.  I appreciate the encouragement and the positive feedback over the past couple of months!

And, of course, I am thankful for my incredible family – a brother and sister (and their respective spouses and kids) who know me all too well, but, for some reason, love me, anyway.  My dad, who always cheers me on, no matter how cockamamie he may think my ideas are.  And my in-laws … I am one of the luckiest people in the world to not only love, but actually LIKE my in-laws.  Then, there’s our dog.  She may wake up at 2 a.m. just to want a play, but I’m still thankful for her and her big brown eyes that are so loving and trusting.

But, let’s face it, there are also loads of other … shall we say “less celebrated” … things for which we are thankful.  Here are a few of mine:

PG Tips – god love the Brits and their tea. 

KitchenAid mixer – while I probably need a good upper body workout, I love how my candy-apple red standing mixer makes quick work of cookie dough and other tasty treats (including, as I learned yesterday – marzipan!)

BEES! – ah, yes, the unsung little fuzzy heroes that keep our fruit and veg crops pollinated and give us that golden nectar of the gods, honey.  Big ups to them and the nutty people who keep them.

Ocado – the only thing that is better than having your groceries delivered to your door first thing on a Saturday morning … is having really good quality groceries delivered to your door on a Saturday morning, supported by outstanding customer service.

the milkman – and while we’re on the subject of delivery we appreciate – the milkman who, at 4 a.m. in the driving rain, freezing temps or pea-soup fog always delivers our 2 pints of skim on time (and in those cute glass bottles, too!)

seed catalogs – we give thanks for the fine folks who tempt us to go beyond our comfort zone and plant new veg in our plots (not to mention, give us something to daydream about during the frosty months)

the new inspirations – the Jamies, the Nigellas, the Smitten Kitchens, Nigel Lawsons, Hugh Fearnley Whittingstalls, Lee Brothers, and Alton Browns of the world (to name but a very, very few) who inspire us … who push us … who make us want to be better cooks, even if it’s for no one else but our families and friends.  We love and respect Elizabeth David and, of course, Julia Child, but there is nothing like having a contemporary who understands the lives we lead now, who helps us cook in a rush – or slow down and remember what’s good.

For all these things … and many, many more … may we be grateful.

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