Thanksgiving seems like forever ago, and indeed as Valentine's Day is fast approaching, it kind of was. So, I thought, instead of focusing on the day in retrospect (it was a normal American Thanksgiving anyways - food and family), I thought I'd make a list of the ten things I was most thankful for in 2013.
1. My Savior - My list starts out with the easiest: I'm thankful that I have an all powerful God who has chosen me, despite my utter unworthiness
2. Reading through the Bible this year with James - We were supposed to have finished by the end of the year, reading the Bible from Genesis through to Revelation. We aren't quite there yet, we have about 30 more days to "make up" still, where we fell behind schedule. What a blessed experience this has been for us as a couple (we read out loud together) and for us as followers of the Way - we look forward to doing this annually and we've started on next year's schedule as well (we've chosen to do this year chronologically through the Bible)
3. My Husband - He's got such a huge load on his shoulders, and he handles it all without complaining and without looking back, and he's growing in faith every year
4. Hero, Allegra, Ian, and Colin - I'm thankful for my "bigger" kids. It's amazing to watch them grow into their own people. Sometimes it's a ride (that I might wish had an exit door from time to time LOL) but I know that the hard work put in now will pay off as we watch them move into the world independently and positively impact those around them
5. Cecily and Elinor - I'm so thankful that I still have "littles" around to lavish my love on, knowing just how fast the precious time flies. I soak in every "Mama" and every snuggle I can get. It's one of the benefits of having a large family, and I think of how I'd miss out if I had just my two oldest kids, two years apart, like most people do. My biggish family certainly didn't grow out of my own planning - it is one of God's choicest blessings.
6. My Dad - I'm thankful for the opportunity to grow closer to my Dad, as he tries his best to be there for me and James, and the kids. It's not the way any of us planned it, but I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that Mom is proud of both of us for where we've gotten (we can talk on the phone for a long time now - who would've thought? we've probably talked more in the last two years than we'd talked for the previous fourteen, just because that was Mom and I's thing)
7. My Brothers - Maybe an oldest sister never quite thinks of her brothers as "grown ups", and I admit that it's hard, but the proof is in their lovely families and the fact that I enjoy spending time with them and wish that we were all much closer, geographically speaking
8. Our Trip to Hawaii - The trip changed every one of us who was there, permanently. It brought a smorgasboard of emotions, but the single most important thing it did was remind us that we are a family, and that no one ever really leaves a family when they pass on - their legacy and memory lives on through generations.
9. Our Pets - We lost some beloved pets in 2013, and gained some too. What a thoughtful, caring God to have made certain animals to be true companions alongside humans! Thanks for the memories Princess, Tabatha, Bear, Ginger, and Bart, and we look forward to many more memories our little pet family of Rory, Cinammon, Augie, fishies, Essie, Elsa, and Stella.
10. Books - Lest I be too serious, this year was a big year for me to get back into reading. I mean, I never really stopped reading, but I forgot a bit just how much a love to read. I acquired a lot of new books for my library and have been absolutely devouring everything from serious academic texts, to faith-based books, to classics, to fluffy fiction.
|Among a few other things, I contributed a dessert to Thanksgiving dinner - Neopolitan Cheesecake|
|Cecily and Colin burning off some Thanksgiving energy outside|