1. Friends - When I began this Disnerd Adventure fourteen weeks ago, I had no idea if anyone would really care what I was doing. And while I'm sure some people think I'm crazy (yes, I know what those looks from my male coworkers mean), I've been joyfully surprised that quite a few friends have come nearly every week to watch these movies with me. I also know a few non-Madison friends who have been following my blog regularly. As silly as this may seem, it's been quite affirming to know that there are people reading this blog and joining in this journey with me. For all these friends, I give thanks.
2. The opportunity to write - The main reason I started this blog is because I enjoy writing and I wanted a fun but constructive way to keep it up. I'm truly loving the time I have each week to sit and reflect on these stories. I'm thankful for the quiet times I have at home, many which are spent researching and writing for this blog.
3. Libraries - Believe it or not, I actually checked the library system to make sure all of the movies were available before I even started this blog. (I actually only own about six or seven of the animated Disney movies.) I am very thankful for the library system in south central Wisconsin, which allows me to view these films without spending a dime. Also a shout-out to the friends who have lent me their nice, non-scratched-up DVD editions for a few of these movies.
4. Walt Disney - In my research I'm learning a lot about the man behind these movies, Walt Disney himself. He was a brilliant storyteller and artist, and I would be remiss not to give him credit for impacting not only my life but our culture for the past 80 years. I don't believe Disney was infallible, but it's hard to deny that he created some of the most memorable stories and characters ever to grace the screen. I'm thankful for the legacy he leaves in his films and the ways they bring joy to my life.
5. The Ultimate Story - Perhaps some may think I'm silly for loving Disney's "fairytale endings," but I think it only reflects my love for the greatest story, the one about a perfect Creator who became a man. This is the story that brings us life, joy and hope to the fullest. I am thankful for the God-Man, Jesus Christ, who conquered the greatest villain - death itself, so that those who trust in him can live "happily ever after,"* not just in some far distant future, but right here, right now. As I've journeyed through watching and writing about these films through the lens of this Good News, the beauty and truth of this Story has me giving thanks every day.
*Perhaps that term may strike a nerve with you. Well, let's dialogue about what "happily ever after" really means! Count on a future blog post about this!
And now, the Disnerd Thanksgiving celebration
Thanksgiving was a challenging holiday to Disnefy since the main tradition mostly includes...well, eating. Fortunately, the movie this week features one of the most iconic dinner scenes of all time, Disney or otherwise. So, in Lady & the Tramp style, I hosted a spaghetti and [turkey] meatballs Thanksgiving dinner. Don't worry, no kissing was involved. Kind of wish we had accordion music though. I may or may not have busted out singing "Bella Notte" at some point.
I was excited because this was the first time I really hosted a dinner where we sat at the table! All of this stuff is my roommate's, but it looks quite fancy doesn't it?