I am thankful for...

I always make my students write about this topic every year, and I thought it was time I do the same. Of course, I hope my answers are a little more thoughtful than "Toy Story 3" and "ice cream"...

What is more obvious than the baby? I am thankful that I had the ability to have a child, that she is healthy thus far, and that I really have had an easy pregnancy. Along these lines, I am grateful for all the kind words and acts that come along with having a baby. People are so generous and willing to help out in any way right now!  I hope they are still around after April 21st!

I am so glad for my little family. Matt has been working so hard and saving for our daughter, and is so helpful around the house. Not to mention, it is nice to enjoy the company of your partner, and I look forward to him coming home every day!  Simple things, like playing that silly golf tee game at Cracker Barrel or driving around the ritzy parts of UA to look at their lights are still fun. Though the other 3 members of the family drive us to the end of the rope almost daily, they make me laugh and smile just as often. If Sebastian was a person, he would be the guy that is always smiling. His tail is always wagging and life is always an adventure for him. Zoe fiercely protects us from the AEP man, dogs barking down the block, or anything else that she feels is out of place. And kitty's acrobatics (I need to record those and show you!) keep us laughing.

Mom and dad always have my back and support me no matter what, but now that Baby O is on the way, they have gone out of their way to make me feel like she is a princess already. Though dad and I started off in a rocky place regarding this, he has "come around" in the last few weeks and I know he will make a great Paw Paw...I have seen him at it for years! And mom has been waiting for another little girl (or boy) to come around for years, so this is her dream come true. I am thankful that my daughter will have 4 excellent grandparents to love her, teach her, encourage her, and shape her.

When I see all the statistics about unemployment, I have to pause and realize just how lucky I am to have a job. A job that I went to school for, that I love, that is rewarding, and that pays for everything we need.

And I know I have written about my friends. My wonderful girls, who are busy planning my shower and awaiting the arrival of the next "Lil' Violet". You have a lot to teach me, and a lot to offer Baby O. I can't wait for her to meet you!

With that said, it's time to kick off my favorite time of year! With the furry members of the family, it was a little terrifying to think of a 6 foot tree, bedazzled in tempting strands, balls, and other items that imitate toys. So, we are using a small treetop table this year. It is still pretty and actually holds all the ornaments I have, so it will do. I had more fun decorating the mantle because I have never had my own mantle!!  Here it is, in all its glory, out of the way of any animals!

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