Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and I've spent some time reflecting on what I'm thankful for. Life itself, good health and loving family and friends top the list.

Also important are people in the Foothills who make my life a little easier and a little more enjoyable.

I'll start with Scott. He's a general contractor with more than 20 years of construction experience, but we just call him our handyman. Neither my husband, Mike, nor I are very good when it comes to repairs. I'm lucky if I get our air filter changed every month.

We know the value of a talented, hard-working handyman, and we hit the jackpot when we found Scott. He's like a detective, finding the source of the problem and fixing it, not just putting a Band-Aid on it.

He takes pride in his work and we trust him completely. He also is a genuinely nice guy. Scott discovered that our son Preston, 7, shares two of his hobbies - stamp collecting and coin collecting. So Scott brought him some cool stamps and a presidential dollar coin the next time he came over. Preston was thrilled.

Meg, the children's librarian at the Dusenberry-River branch, is another person who positively impacts our family whenever we see her. Whether she's leading a preschool storytime or helping us find a book, she shows my boys that the library is a wonderful place and reading is fun.

Big thanks to the Rural/Metro firefighters at the 1833 E. Skyline Drive station. We appreciate the job they do and the risks they take to keep our community safe.

The firefighters came to our home to help us with a rattlesnake, so the boys and I dropped off some muffins for them a few days later. Trevor showed Preston and Griffin, 4, many features of the fire engine and patiently answered their questions.

Finally, thanks to Autumn, owner of Mildred & Dildred, the toy store at La Encantada. She and her staff are always welcoming, whether we're searching for the perfect birthday gift or just popping in to let the boys play for a little while. We appreciate the plays, story times and other events the store sponsors.

An old Sesame Street song asks, "Who are the people in your neighborhood?" I'm thankful that Scott, Meg, Trevor and Autumn - and many other caring and talented people like them - live and work in our Foothills neighborhood.

E-mail Kelley Helfand at