Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Here's my gratitude short list: my family, especially my mother-in-law, who is battling stomach cancer right now, my friends near and far, the Chilmark Pre-School, the abundance of good food and even better company, the Aquinnah Library, the Martha's Vineyard Film Festival, our babysitters, my health, and the peace and quiet of Aquinnah this time of year (soon to be broken by deer shooting) and early bedtimes caused by daylight savings time. Nothing like giving thanks to keep things in perspective.
The Yoga Collective at Co-housing is offering a free Thanksgiving Day class at 9 am taught by the exceptional Mollie Doyle of Chilmark. Trust me; this is a great way to start off your Thanksgiving. If I were not in New Jersey I would be at co-housing. Maybe I'll be able to find a yoga class in a strip mall.
Another way to shake off some of the turkey day weight is the World Dinner and Dance Party to benefit Media Voices for Children and the coffee kids from Kenyan Schoolhouse on Saturday, November 26, from 5:30 to 9 pm. DJ Di will provide the music. All ages are welcome; tickets cost $25 for adults, $10 for kids, and $50 for families. Tickets available for purchase at the door at the Chilmark Community Center. This is a great organization that helps kids in Kenya get an education.
Advent begins this Sunday; the Community Baptist Church of Gay Head will hold services at 9 am with Rev. Ellen P. Tatreau presiding. For more information, call 508-693-1539.
This is the last weekend that Berta and Carla will have their store open so if you're looking for some holiday gifts, now's the time to head up to the Cliffs. After this weekend everything at the Cliffs is closed and won't be open again until May. My, that seems like a long ways away.
If you haven't seen John Wightman's holiday show at the Bank of Martha's Vineyard in Chilmark yet, stop by; it's really lovely and he has a lot of prints for sale.
There are many wonderful artisans' and craft fairs this holiday season, benefitting many worthy causes. I have not heard of any up Island, but I know that some up-Island artists will be represented at Featherstone's 9th Annual Holiday Gift Show, open daily from 12 noon to 4 pm through Sunday, December 18.
The Peacecraft Holiday Benefit Sale will be holding its 15th annual sale, starting the day after Thanksgiving. Its new location is across from the Black Dog Tavern at 13 Beach Road Extension, Vineyard Haven. The crafts and gifts are from Haiti and other third world countries, and 100 percent of the proceeds benefits the artisans. Peacecraft will be open from 12 noon to 5 pm daily through Christmas Eve day. For more information, go to www.fishfarmhaiti.org . To volunteer this season, call Meg at 508- 687-9709.
Hospice of Martha's Vineyard will host Handmade from the Heart at the Dr. Daniel Fisher House in Edgartown on December 10 from 10 am to 4 pm. There is still time to donate any handmade crafts and baked goods to the event; just call Terre Young at the Hospice office, 508-693-0189. All funds raised will go to Hospice of Martha's Vineyard.
State Road Restaurant, in collaboration with the West Tisbury Library Foundation, is presenting the second of the Speakeasy Series, a program of intimate evenings with noted authors to benefit the library's capital campaign. The first one will be held on Tuesday, November 29, at 5:30 pm with Pulitzer-prize winning author Tony Horwitz speaking about his book, "Midnight Rising," about abolitionist John Brown. Hors d'oeuvres and light refreshments will be served. Tickets are $125. Reservations are encouraged. For more information, call Carol Brush at 508-693-3489.
And so begins the season of eating, shopping, and giving. Maybe I'll try to do things a little differently this year and do less eating and shopping and more giving.