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I'm Thankful For...

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This is my first Thanksgiving as a US Citizen...but my 20th as an Angeleno. If you caught me talking on KCRW's "Good Food" today about what Thanksgiving is where I come from (Canada!) then you'll know that Thanksgiving there is a little quieter and not quite as rooted in tradition, save for the ones any given family honors. For my small family, we give thanks for each other, the bounty of good food on our table, and the goodness in our lives. That's pretty much where I'm at today, though I can't be with my family, and I don't watch football. (But now I can vote, and, holy cow am I thankful for that!)

Los Angeles is an amazing city, and I fall in love with it a little more every year, with every secret I unlock or new thing I experience. I see the city through its people, its history, its art, its geography, and its food, and I'm thankful for the many experiences I've had this year that have enriched my life, like meeting illustrator and author Maira Kalman at the Skirball, and going on photo adventures at the LA River Center or in search of public art in Culver City.

There are also things that bring the people of Los Angeles together, and create community, like the annual Pillow Fight in Pershing Square, Chinatown Nights in the summer, the KCRW Pie Contest, Park[ing] Day, the Great LA Walk, and farmers' markets like the seasonal one at Yamashiro. Speaking of farmers' markets, I've spent this year exploring many of them in the city, celebrating them and the future of good food in LA at events like the Roots of Change summit and the Good Food for All event. While I could geek out and talk policy, I'll just say that I'm thankful that we as a city are working to make the city a better place for everyone, slowly, and sometimes subtly.

Of course, I'm LAist's resident foodie, so I'd be remiss to not say how thankful I am that I belong to the food community here in Los Angeles, and that I know and work and socialize with some incredible people, from my "posse" of fellow food-enthusiast writers to the chefs and restaurant folk I have the honor to know. I'm thankful that we can experience diversity through food, and that we have, despite any national or international reputation to the contrary, an AMAZING food city at our disposal.

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On a personal note, I am thankful for LAist because that is part of my family, and it is my passion and my daily hard work. I've been with the site since 2005, and so not only am I thankful I've stuck around, but I'm thankful for how we've grown and how we continue to grow. Though every day there are typos, and commenters who can be hurtful and cruel, I'm thankful that I have a job where every day is a new adventure, that I have access to the city in a manner I never imagined, and that I am, hopefully, a part of the good in our readers' lives. I'm thankful to our volunteer contributors who take photos and write posts out of the kindness of their hearts and out of the carved-out free moments in their busy lives. I'm thankful for the Editor who went before me, Zach, for making the last 3 years of work really incredible. Now I'm thankful for new assistant editors, who are stepping up, like me, into new roles with an eye for trailblazing and hard work and good times.

Lastly, though there are so many, many, many things big and small I'm thankful for that I'm surely leaving out, I'm thankful for my friends, who save my life every single day, and to my family, who are far away but always in my heart. I'm thankful for Facebook (don't laugh!) for giving me a way, any day, to know that my friends from 25 years ago are well and happy. Oh, and, yeah, I'm thankful for my boyfriend, who makes Los Angeles a better place through the amazing work that he does, but more so, makes Los Angeles a better place for me, just by being in it.

Happy Thanksgiving, Los Angeles. I sure do love you.