Gratitude from the Dexter brood

Written by Hollye Dexter

November 24, 2010

Well it’s Thanksgiving again, a wonderful time to gather my own growing family around one table (a miracle in itself) and appreciate one another.
And wow, I am thankful. Truly thankful, even though this year has drained us of every last cent in our “emergency cushion” fund, and we’re now sitting on just box springs. Borrowed, financed box springs, at that. But hey…I’m not begging on the streets in Calcutta. I’m not living in a cave in Afghanistan. I’m not a prisoner of war. For as broke-ass-broke as this year has made us, I know that come tomorrow morning we’ll be like the Who’s down in Who-ville. We’ll hold hands and sing, and nobody – no Grinchy year, no cockroaches, no attacking pitbulls nor threatening neighbors, nor lawsuits, nor sewage spills, nor exploding appliances, cars and plumbing, no depression or loss, will be able to stop us. Because as cheesy as it may sound, what this family is rich in is love.
Big time L O V E.
Love and mess and chaos, but love overriding all.
I’m so thankful for my beautiful daughter Cristen, who is healthy and thriving in life, my newly married son Taylor who is balancing work with being a husband and father, a beautiful daughter-in-law Aya and our new angel Ayumu, and my little firecracker Evan who keeps me on my toes. Above all, I thank god every day for my husband Troy, who has weathered every storm with me so brilliantly. With him by my side I know I can get through anything (but please, Universe, let’s not test that theory).
But it’s when I take my friends into assessment that I realize – the year that brought us to our knees financially has given us something much more valuable. We got to see the true beauty in people. We have been surrounded by love and support, held up by kindness and empathy, bolstered by generosity of spirit. Our friends have given so much to us…so much. As much as I look forward to slamming the screen door on 2010’s ass next month, I will always cherish the gifts of love and friendship it brought me. (Not to mention it forced me to write a lot more just to maintain my sanity.)
Today is a day for giving thanks (because tomorrow I’ll be cooking all day.) You know how they have the acknowledgements page in a book? This is my acknowledgements page for this year. I couldn’t have survived the MOTHER OF ALL BAD YEARS without all of you. So cheers….I’ll be thinking of you tomorrow when I raise a glass. (Hell, what am I saying? I’m not waiting until tomorrow!)
Thank you Erin and Beth….for oh my god… everything. All the time. Every day. Life is unimaginable without you.
Thank you Dani and Hayden and Carly, for being my family, for loving us, for loving Evan and Mu so much, and so well. And thank you Joy for being Joy, and Cindy for brilliance and kindness and patience and dependability and endless support. And AMY for generosity and lifting my spirit, showing me how to be brave more times this year than I could possibly count. And Julie and Mary, OY! – where to even begin? And Monica for laughter, tears, hand-holding and margaritas…and Linda for the same! And my miracle brother Ted and sister Heather and all my family in Texas, you are my heart. Beverlee and Laura for your hearts and connection to my childhood. Joe for soulful music and deep friendship. Wayne Foster Entertainment for fun, glamorous work- and Dean De Lorenzo and Matt Sedoti and Rob for booking us all year. Lifelong friends Kelly and Keri, and Diane C for 23 years of constant belief and encouragement and burden-sharing. And all my beautiful writers/artist friends who encourage and support not only me but one another : Maxee and Barb and Madge and Richard (best poetic emails!) and Melody and Joyce M. and Diane L and all my Pam’s and Cheryl and Kathleen and Laurenne and Hope and Zoe and all my Amy’s and Cathy and Kristine and Molly and Denise and Christina and Stacy and Stacey and Sharon and Anita and Barbara and wow- I could spend all day writing names….there are so many people I am grateful for. So many of you mommy-friends ( Karla and Manuela and Aneesa) and facebook friends and childhood friends who wrote kind, supportive things all year long- Karen, Maria, Metris, Stacey, Scott, Laura, Mary, Rob for renewed friendship and Dennis- for saving my butt this Summer. Thank you both Mark C and Denise for guiding us through some scary police/legal challenges. Thanks to my awesome neighbors (all the others are GOOD ones) and all the wonderful people who keep Troy composing and and Troy’s friends (Tamara and Lori- love you girls!) and family for keeping him upright through the storm…and Cristen’s great bosses at Live Nation for making her so happy and all the people who employ Taylor- Big Moves and Emily Osment and GLEE and White Lights and …Evan’s amazing school and great teachers.
There is so much to be grateful for it’s starting to feel like a gratitude avalanche so please forgive me if I’ve forgotten to include your name, I am tearfully overwhelmed and they are starting to play the “get off the stage” music…..
Counting my blessings today, I feel not just rich, but uber-rich. Crazy rich. Gold plated engine parts and diamond encrusted teeth rich. If only MTV had a show for “Inner” cribs…I’d be showing Jay-Z what rich means.
Happy Thanksgiving everybody! I am grateful for YOU, every one of you, more than you will ever know.

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  1. Anonymous

    You are truly loved. Your family picture is wonderful and now I can put faces to all your blogs. Love you lots.

  2. Deb and Barbara

    So so so beautiful. Like you and yours. Thank you for writing and being there. You are sunshine and fresh air. The very best.
    Love, B

  3. amy ferris

    YOU ARE A GORGEOUS AMAZING TALENTED BEAUTIFUL GLORIOUS TREASURE … and the world is bigger & better because of you.
    so deeply.

  4. tamara

    Can. not. wait. to hang out with you guys, no matter when it happens. I'm convinced we all are soul mates, sisters and brother of the heart (hope that's not too weird LOL). I'm out to Cali every three months or so to take my dad to doctor appointments so we'll make it happen sooner or later.

    much much love and gratitude,

  5. Beverlee

    Holls- this is so beautiful!!! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!! Love you!!!

  6. Maxee

    Someone once asked me, Hollye, if I knew you. Of course I said yes. Then they said, isn't she an angel. And I said, "yes, she is an angel to us all. She doesn't realize it, but she is."
    Hollye, you do random acts of kindness without even thinking about it, and you do it all the time. Yes, you are most definitely an angel, our angel.
    So on this Thanksgiving night I wish you and your beautiful family a wonderful holiday and keep watching over us, 'cause we are watching over you too. You are our light and our love.
    And I am forever grateful to have you in my life.

  7. matters that matter

    the lump in my throat is overwhelming emotion (not a massive bite of turkey). you are so real, so gracious and authentic. you constantly and forever are the reminder of TRUTH; lived, spoken, endured and appreciated. My family gathered around one table as well and gave thanks for the things endured, the courage summoned to overcome some unbearable obstacles, the fact that each one of us has stumbled terribly, fell down more than once, chipped a tooth, broke and arm or a heart or a soul…and yet there we were, gathered and thankful. I am thankful for you Holley…for all you and your loved ones have endured and for the brilliance and transparency from which you live your life.

  8. Amy Wise


    Beautiful. Amazing. Kind. Heartfelt. Love.


  9. Cheryl

    So beautifully written, you are inspirational. You inspire all others to be as giving as you.

  10. Lori

    Love love love this picture!


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