Saturday, November 1, 2008

on being thankful.

In recognition that November is the month in which we celebrate Thanksgiving, I have decided to dedicate the entire month of November to posts about things I am thankful for. I plan {hope} to post every day. I think we need to remember all the blessings in our lives more often than just this one day a year. I invite any readers who've stopped by to join me in specifically recognizing and acknowledging all the things you're grateful for. The news these days is filled with mostly bad news. The economy. The war. The state of our nation's healthcare system. Floods. Murders. It seems the list doesn't end. I want to shift my focus away from so much of the negative, and focus on the positive things in my life. To say "Thank you" for so much that I've been given.

Today begins with Family. I am thankful for my Family. Of course, my immediate family consists of Toby, Sophia and me. As I mentioned in a previous post, Toby and I have been married for over 12 years. We were married over 11 years before we had Sophia. Although Toby and I were a 'family' before, we are even more so today. As a young couple with no children, it's easy to be drawn in to all the activities and hectic nature of our world. The focus is more on the outside than on the internal family workings. Sure, we did things for us as a couple. But I'm not sure how much we thought of ourselves as a family. Since Sophia entered our lives, the concept of the three of us as a family unit is constantly at the forefront of our minds. Though we still have our jobs, our friends and our hobbies, the family connection and focus on our small little group is so much more important. We are so blessed to be a family together. I am truly grateful for my little family.

And there are others. I am one of three children; Toby is one of four. Both the babies of the family. We are each blessed to have parents who are still together and still married after 50 plus years. Not too many people can say that these days. Our parents (both sets) are so supportive of us and are willing to give of their time and resources to help us in any way that we need. We have built-in baby sitters (SWEEEEET)! Our moms are the best cooks around, and our dads are super handy with all sorts of things. We are situated about 10 minutes from either set of parents. That's a good place to be!

We also have wonderful, loving siblings that bring an extra measure of love an support to us. I am so proud of my two older sisters. They are great wives, mothers, sisters, daughters and children of the Almighty. They are the best friends. We talk regularly. We can talk about anything. Betty is such an inspiration. Even with her myriad health problems, she is always the first to step up and help. She is a devoted mother and grandmother. She even helps take care of sickly calves on the farm! She can create anything with sciccors, glue and paper. Her crafting and sewing skills know no bounds. She has the best eyes.

LeAnn is so amazing. Short, but amazing:) She manages to be a wife and {busy} mother, work a full time job, and go to school to get her degree in history! Whew! I'm tired just typing all that. She is a list maker and a lover of shoes. Perhaps that's why we get along so well?! She is compassionate and dedicated. She is beautiful.

How my parents managed to raise three children who are all {still} married, are productive citizens, are Christians, and are good parents themselves is beyond me. Kudos to my Mom and Dad. I love you!

Toby has an older sister and two older brothers. You have not seen a family so blessed with talents as this.

Toby's sister has an amazing gift for design and visualization. She can come in to your home, take a look at your stuff, move it all around, and you think you're living in someone else's posh pad! She is a writer, a gardener, and an artist. Jeff is the most amazing builder. He is one of those people who can see a set of 2-D plans, and immediately see the completed building in his mind. You should see some of the log homes he has hand crafted. You should be so lucky to LIVE in one of them! He is truly gifted in this area. Cliff is an entreprenuer. He runs a successful company that provides jobs to several in the area. He can create little projects like nobody's business (e.g., a swimming pool with a castle)! He is also a gifted artist (painter).

We have many nephews, nieces, aunts, and uncles. Too many to mention each of them here. Suffice it to say that Toby and I are surrounded by a strong family unit that so few are fortunate enough to have. May we remeber this every day, and never take it for granted.

In honor of Family day, I'm including an excerpt from "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" This is a document that was published by the leadership of the Mormon church in 1995. No, I am not a Mormon. However, I think there are bits of this document that are worth sharing. These tenets are common among most believers. If you want to read the whole Proclamation, go here.

"The family is ordained of God. Marriage between man and woman is essential to His eternal plan. Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony, and to be reared by a father and a mother who honor marital vows with complete fidelity. Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities."

1 comment:

Boop said...

Often times we take so much for granted. Thanks for being thankful. I agree our families are truly blessed and aren't many left around like them.