Three thoughts on Thanksgiving:

1) I woke up today feeling soooo laid back — which is unusual for me and Thanksgiving morning. The funny thing is, our day won’t be much different than other Thanksgivings. We’ve got a big dinner planned with all our usual dishes. We were up late last night making pies (see my Instagram stories for a peek). We spent time yesterday tidying the house so it’s as comfortable as possible to hang out in. I’ll go exploring with the kids this morning to forage options for the centerpiece. We’ll set a fancy table. We’ll likely go take a walk around Lake Merritt before our meal. And we’ll watch Fantastic Mr. Fox too. All the traditions in place. (And I love it.)

The difference is: we don’t have any guests coming!

Of course we’ll miss everyone — we really love having a house full of people and getting to share the day with family and friends. And we love the desserts and dishes they add to our feast too. : ) But I confess, it’s nice to have a little hosting break. With our son Ralph gone, it will just be 7 of us around the table (that seems so small!), but gathering my chicks and getting to focus on our family feels amazing. It’s almost a luxury these days.

For anyone feeling the hosting pressure today, I recommend this little Company Is Coming video. It makes me laugh so hard.

2) Lately, I’ve felt a real pull to start a gratitude practice, no doubt inspired by my friend Karen Walrond. She lost her beautiful home during the flood in Houston — no flood insurance because they weren’t in a “flood plain,” and the house is a total loss. It’s being demolished.

But her attitude and reaction to what’s happening to her is really remarkable. She’s managed to keep a really beautiful perspective throughout the whole ordeal (an ordeal that’s not anywhere close to being done yet) and has kept focused on looking ahead to positive, exciting, upcoming projects.

She credits her ability to weather this storm so gracefully to her long-standing gratitude practice.

I don’t know what my own gratitude practice should look like, but I’m hoping to start today. I think it could make for a really transformative holiday season. Do you have any sort of gratitude practice? If yes, I’d love any thoughts or tips.

3) I’m really, really grateful for you and the whole Design Mom Community. I mean that so sincerely. What a huge blessing it is that I get to surround myself daily with kind, good, smart women who care deeply about the world.

Thank you for adding your thoughts to the conversations here. Thank you for sharing the posts I write with your friends and sisters and aunts. Thank you for helping me see other perspectives and viewpoints. Thank you for asking challenging questions. Thank you for keeping the comment section here one of the safest, most reasonable places on the internet. Thank you for allowing me to speak honestly and imperfectly about whatever is on my mind — whether it’s my mental health or my thoughts on social issues or my latest parenting theories. Thank you for reading.

I hope you have a wonderful day. I hope you get to spend time with people you love (and that love you too). I hope you get to eat something delicious. I hope you get alone time if you need it. I hope you get a chance to go outside — and I hope it’s beautiful wherever you are. Happy Thanksgiving!

P.S. — I sent out a newsletter last week and asked readers about gift guides. The feedback was YES, everyone wants gift guides! So I’m working hard on them and will start to share them next week. Is there a particular category you need help with? Teen gifts? Brother gifts? Let me know.