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This year, Thanksgiving was much different. Matt and I were together, celebrating with both of our families, for the first time since he joined the Marines. We started at my parents house, where my sister and her husband joined us as well. My new favorite dessert made an appearance – the lovely Scotcheroos.
After eating our full share of all the goodies a traditional Thanksgiving offers, we squeezed a few family portraits in. It’s amazing to see the collection of portraits from over the years – each year, we don’t seem to change a whole lot. But when I compare this years to 2005’s photo, for example. Things are much different; we are much different.
After spending the afternoon with my family, Matt and I joined his family for an evening of board games. It was the perfect ending to an amazing Thanksgiving day – everyone spread out around the board games in the middle of the living room.
While we didn’t go around the table this year to list what we were thankful for, I made my own mental list many times during the week leading up to Thanksgiving and in the days since. Among the many blessings include:
-Matt. For our history, for the support he gives me every day in every part of my life. For everything.
-My family, which now includes my new brother-in-law Tony. While he’s been an honorary part of our family since 2005, he is now an OFFICIAL part since he married my sister.
-Matt and my apartment. Our first place together, in Minnesota. It’s different and smaller than our first official place in Hawaii, but it’s ours, and it’s just right, for us right now. For that, I’m thankful. And – we don’t have to pay for heat, so I can crank that thermostat in the cold Minnesota winter!
-Laura Radniecki Images. A year ago, when I said I was thankful for photography, and for the go ahead from Matt to pursue my dreams, I had no idea where I would be in one year. I remember talking to my aunt and uncle last Thanksgiving, telling them about my dreams, goals, and I mentioned how far-fetched it sometimes seemed. Now, a year later – everything I had hoped for is a reality. And I’m only just beginning.
-The GI Bill, which is allowing Matt to get his bachelors degree, in return for his 4 years of service in the Marines.
-The present. We cherish the past and we look forward to the future, but we are both trying to make a conscious effort to live in the present. To focus on the now. To let the future take care of itself. Because it will.
Now, Thanksgiving has come and gone, and the focus is now changed to Christmas. I absolutely ADORE this time of year, and am so thankful that we can soak it in for a whole month. Our house is now trimmed with lights, a Christmas tree, and other reminders of the true meaning of the season.
December is a big month in our life – my birthday and our anniversary take place this month, in addition to Christmas and New Years Eve. So, every year, December is welcomed with open arms.
Let the Christmas traditions of music, TV movies, cookie baking, holiday dance shows, presents, and food begin! I am ready!