Each year on this blog, I have written a special post just in time for the Thanksgiving holiday, and I’m not making an exception this year. In fact, just last night, I returned from New York City with the Tampa Bay area response team that went up to assist with Hurricane Sandy relief. With that experience fresh in my mind, I have a newfound appreciation for just how fortunate and blessed my family and I have been this year. Without any further ado, here’s the 2012 edition of what I am thankful for.
I am thankful for my lovely bride Rhonda, who has taken a bit of a shine to working the shop this year. You go, girl!
I am thankful for my two sons. They are both doing well in school, growing like weeds and making me proud.
I am thankful I had the opportunity to go to New York City to do just a little bit to help the people who have been impacted by Hurricane Sandy. My thoughts and prayers go out to them for a fast recovery from the impact of that terrible storm.
I am thankful for the woodworking friends I have met – and made – at the Woodworking Show that happened in Tampa back in March and the Woodworking in America Conference in November. Oh, and the folks at the St. Petersburg Woodcrafter’s Guild I joined this year. You guys are the greatest.
I am thankful the brain trust over at the Modern Woodworkers Association have included me in their podcast. Yes, you have to endure me as your host, but the three other guys do an AWESOME job on the show!
I am thankful for the support and enthusiasm we were able to build for the first annual Get Woodworking Week this past February. I’m not sure how many woodworkers we got into their shops this past winter, but even if it was only one, I consider that a positive development.
I am thankful that I was able to reach 1,000 posts on this blog. That’s an awful lot of writing, but hey, people keep coming back! I am also thankful for everyone who helped out with providing prizes for the readers during the thousand post contest. Youse guys made the thousandth post something to remember.
I am thankful that I was selected to be a pilot instructor for the Master Public Information Officers course in Emmitsburg, Maryland this past August – and even more thankful Kari Hultman was able to pull together a meeting of woodworking friends for a get together in Gettysburg. It was great to put many names with faces.
I am thankful to my supporters – Bell Forest Products, Infinity Cutting Tools, Bora Tools, Tormek and my newest supporter Laguna Tools. Your faith in me has been unshakable, and words can’t express my thanks to each of you.
I am thankful that the folks at Wood Magazine still keep the Shop Monkey in circulation in their magazine. After all these years, and all those empty banana skins, you would think they would have grown tired of those monkeyshines by now…
I am thankful I invested the time and money into reimagining my shop space. Who knew that when I had the first idea to do this in April, I would be working in such an efficient and well-appointed shop – all within the same space I’ve been using for years.
I am thankful that my family gave me some time during our summertime family vacation to make a few woodworking side trips to the Thomas Day exhibit, the cabinet shop at Colonial Williamsburg and the USS New Jersey.
And, most importantly, I am very thankful for each of you. Sometimes, I still have to pinch myself – I can’t believe that you take the time out of your busy days to check in here to see what random zaniness is happening. It is my honor to have you here at the site, and I cannot overstate my thanks to each of you.
Tomorrow, as we sit down around my table here at home, I will raise my glass to each of you in appreciation of all you do for me. You deserve it.