Friday, November 26, 2010

My thankfuls

Parents: I learned so very much from mine and have been fortunate to be well-loved by them. The older I get, the more I realize I got from my dad: the love of solitude, a notebook and pen, a love for growing things (this arguably came from both sides, but Dad's the true hobbit), the subversive sense of humor. My mom has spent a lot of time and money traveling to visit us wherever we have lived so that my kids really know and adore their Yaya, despite the distance. I know I can depend on them and even as an adult that knowledge and stability lends a great deal of comfort to my life. And Doug's mom and step-dad have been wonderful surrogate parents and friends to me--I genuinely love spending time with them, and I'm well aware that that isn't how a lot of people feel about their in-laws. They are both wonderful grandparents to my kids, and spoil them rotten, as grandparents should. I'm tremendously grateful for the parents in my life.

EVERYBODY ELSE: I have a large and wonderful family, and so does my husband. This makes for quite the circle of love and support. In a world where it is increasingly difficult for people to find one or two individuals in their lives who really love them and can be depended on, Doug and I (and our children) have literally dozens. There are so many brothers, sisters, in-laws, uncles, aunts, nieces, nephews, cousins, grandparents that give so much joy and friendship to our lives and we love the fun and interesting individuals that each of them is.

Health: Being pregnant always makes me appreciate this one more. My normally awesome immune system goes on vacation while I incubate, and I catch every little bug that goes around. On top of that, everything starts to ache and not work right. It makes me very appreciative of my youth and general good health, which do make the rest of life so much easier to do. With three kids, we have only been to the the ER once, with a resulting few-day stay in the hospital. That's it. Other than that, its only been colds and the occasional flu and then, every once in a great while, an ear infection. That's pretty amazing.

Priesthood Blessings: On the rare occasion that one of the kids is miserable sick, Doug can always give them a blessing, and we have lots of wonderful Priesthood leaders in our lives who are unselfish with their time and happy to help him do so. A few weeks ago, Keilana was at the horrible-fever-rattling-breath-barking cough point and could not sit comfortably, much less sleep. She was given a blessing and, though she still had a miserable night, within an hour her breathing has eased enough that she was able to get some sleep. Similar circumstances have played out many times in our home (or in homes where Doug has been asked to assist) and I'm grateful that that power is a regular part of my life.

For my kids: I'm so grateful for Keilana's sunny temperament and helpful attitude, for the way her zealous excitement makes everything more fun (I'm pretty sure that she is the main reason I like Disneyland). I'm grateful for Dylan's alternative view of the world and his off-beat sense of. . . .everything, constantly making me see things in a way I never would've myself, and usually making me laugh. I'm grateful for Kylie's calm good-naturedness, her natural proclivity for affection and sharing, so that, her tremendous bossiness notwithstanding, she helps to add some calm to our busy home. I'm excited to see who our next daughter will be and how she'll fit with the others. Watching children grow and discover the world is definitely about the most fun and amazing thing I have in my life.

For my husband, and the relationship I have with him: I'm grateful for the way he provides for us, in every sense. Without me having to take a job outside our home, he provides us with a warm home and a good car and lots of good food and plenty of clothes and fun. He listens to the kids, and plays with them and cuddles with them and does everything a good dad should. He serves faithfully as the Priesthood leader in our home and is good at teaching the kids. I'm grateful that he and I are a team, that we're best friends, that we rarely ever miscommunicate, fail to communicate, or disagree on anything of true substance. And he's really, really funny.

There are way too many other things to list--and maybe that's the greatest blessing of all. I have so many things for which to be grateful, that its difficult to even begin to scratch the surface

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