Lizzard Loves Thanksgiving.
|Chocolate Pecan Pie. So delish.|
Thanksgiving just gets it, doesn't it?? It is not as though it comes without stress, particularly for those hosting the meal, hosting out of town guests, and preparing the food.
But, Thanksgiving, unlike its close (on the calendar at least) holiday neighbor, Christmas, does not involve an entire season. It is mostly celebrated over just 1 week, or even a long weekend!
I love Thanksgiving because it is a holiday that in the US of A is nearly universally celebrated. There is no religious affiliation, there is nothing decisive about slowing down and giving thanks for family, friends, food, good health, etc.
I love that Thanksgiving has that unifying piece to it; it brings people together- in this year that we so desperately need to connect. What a strange year 2016 was. In so many ways it was great, but in other big important ways it was, frankly, scary.
Chris & I celebrated Thanksgiving with his family at his parents house in Pennsylvania. We stayed with his big sister at her family's home in Delaware. As much as we tried to be helpful and contribute; we owe a debt of gratitude to my husband's family for hosting us.
My mother in law spent the better part of 2016 hospitalized. We were profoundly grateful for her homecoming to coincide closely with the Thanksgiving holiday. Despite ongoing health concerns/issues- having her home for the holidays was a HUGE win for our family.
Things I am thankful/grateful for in 2016; in no particular order:
-My family. Chris, my parental family, my in laws, my extended family on all sides. I feel comforted, loved, taken care of, encouraged and supported by the motley crew that is my family. I am so incredibly blessed to have all of these people tied so closely to me.
-My friends. The saying goes that friends are the family you choose & I think its true. How lucky I am to be surrounded by thoughtful, interesting, well read, funny, kind, caring, understanding & just plain wonderful friends.
-Our home. It was a long time coming, but we moved into our forever home May 20, 2016 and we are so thankful for its coziness, light, warmth, and reflection of the 2 of us. It gives us shelter yes, but somehow helps reflect the life we hope to build here.
-Coffee. Always coffee.
-Our new pup Owenn. Despite his penchant for eating stuff he shouldn't & peeing in everyone's home he visits.......we love him. He is a goof ball of a good dog & great with people & other dogs. We feel like we won the shelter dog lottery with him.
-Baking. Whether I'm baking Belle Plaine Bread for customers, family, friends or baking cookies, cakes, scones, pies, for fun - I am grateful for the peace & quiet & oftentimes connection that comes with baking. I love baking with the littles in my life as well as with my mom and sister. It is one of my favorite hobbies & it is such a treat to share the experience (& the final products) with those I love. If you love to bake & want to bake together - let me know - I'm always game for a baking date!
-Our health. As Chris & I get older, we are increasingly thankful for our healthy, strong bodies. Trying not to take them for granted (& trying to lay off the epic quantities of desserts that tempted us both throughout the holiday season!!).
-The new community we moved into. We have never before lived in a place with neighbors who were interested in/invested in each other. We had countless neighbors call over the fence, stop by the front yard and even send flowers (!!) as we were renovating the house & finally moved into it. I love that we know our neighbors faces & names and they know ours. I treasure the fact that we've been welcomed into their homes (and they into ours). There were so many things about living in the city that I adored, but not one neighbor knocked on my door when I moved into my condo. I got to know my neighbors over time & they remain friends of ours; but there wasn't the same sense of community that I feel up here.
|Baking cupcakes with our nephew!|
|:) :) :)|
|DOUBLE Turkey Hats!!!|
|Barb cuddling with Powder|
|Does it look like they know what they're doing??|
I don't think so!
|Lots of love|
|Turkey cupcakes! Yes!!|
|3 mile run with our niece at a beautiful state park!|
|Hayride to cut down a Christmas tree for Chris' parents & sister|
|Success! 2 trees for 2 families!|
What are you grateful/thankful for as you reflect on 2016? I resolve in 2017 to make these reflections more a part of my day to day life - not such a special occasion reflection!