I started this 30 days of Thanksgiving challenge with good intentions, but probably unrealistic expectations. The goal was to post on Facebook everyday someone that I'm thankful for. I wanted to take it a step further and also write a blog post each day. I literally blinked, and the month was over. However, I DID keep up with my thanksgiving on Facebook...so here's the rest of my list!
14. I am thankful for my health. I posted this article about the way turkeys are raised for your Thanksgiving table. Our family recently became vegetarian, and considering the way our country mass produces meat, I believe we made the right decision. I am not trying to convince anyone to not eat meat...just be aware of what you're putting in your body!
15. I am thankful for my education. There was recently a story that hit the news about a teacher caught on tape (a kid was actually wired) bullying a special needs student. It was horrible. Unfortunately, in my profession, it's rarely that the GOOD teachers make the news. But I consider myself a good teacher, and I know a lot of other good teachers. So, I am thankful that even though I don't make the news for being good at what I do, that I have the education to do it.
16. I am thankful for my parents. My uncle died this month after a long battle with cancer. He fought hard. But it made me realize that my parents aren't young. I have a special relationship with both of my parents, in very different ways. I love them both so much and I can't imagine losing them. My heart hurts for my cousins, especially as they face the holiday season without their dad.
17. I am thankful for my baking/cooking skills. I made an awesome vegetarian Thanksgiving menu! It was a lot of work, but EVERYBODY loved it!
18. I am thankful that we have the Chillout Chair. Sometimes Sadie just needs to rock and rock and rock...and rock. I am glad we have something that can accommodate her (and keep her quiet!). Seriously, I don't know what we'd do if we didn't have this thing. I would go crazy from all the screaming and crying.
19. I am thankful for the Internet. Seriously, what an amazing invention, huh? I am able to keep in touch with people I wouldn't otherwise be in touch with through Facebook! I can watch TV shows and sports! And I can teach in a virtual classroom!! The internet is sooooo cool. And it just seems to be getting better all the time (as hard as that is to believe).
20. I am thankful for my brother. We are not only far apart in age, but we have very different personalities. Everybody likes Marcus, he's easy-going and funny (whereas I can tend to be bossy and uptight), growing up that drove me crazy. Now we're both adults and we both have little kiddos, and we're finally in a place in both our lives where we're equal. And we're still really different, but we get along much better. He is a rapper. He lives in Oregon and tours throughout the western US often. Every once in a while he comes through Phoenix and we get to visit. It was nice to have him over for dinner and catch up on his life.
21. I am thankful for 2-year-old tantrums. Okay, that sounds weird, but it's true. Anything that Sadie does that is somewhat normal we rejoice over. She is starting to really "know" what she wants and get mad if things don't go her way. It's annoying, sure. But, the fact that she is even aware enough to have her own opinions is so amazing.
22. I am thankful that Thanksgiving is about family, not about Turkey. When I posted my Thanksgiving menu on Facebook, I had a bunch of comments about how people can't imagine Thanksgiving without turkey and how it was so horrible that we wouldn't be experiencing the best thing about Thanksgiving. What.ever. I guess people don't realize A. you can cook a turkey anytime of the year, and B. Thanksgiving isn't about having turkey, it's about having family and being thankful for those in your life.
23. I am so thankful that our family loves Sadie so much. Sadie can be really high maintenance (I know, shocking) and sometimes I just look forward to my family coming over and loving on her. Seriously, I don't even mind that they walk in the door and barely say hi to me, but go straight over to doting on my child, because she loves the attention...and that's attention that I don't have to be giving her. Some people are intimidated by Sadie's special needs, so they kind of shy away, but not my family! If they don't know, they ask. If I need help, they want to know how they can help. If she's not happy, they are determined to do whatever they need to to make her happy...even rock and rock and rock and rock. And rock.
24. On Thanksgiving I was thankful for all my friends on Facebook. Seriously, I learn more from Facebook than I'd ever be able to find on the internet myself or read in the newspaper or listen to on NPR. Not to mention all the things I learn that are NOT in the news... like who is pregnant and who already has 5 kids and what funny thing your kid said today or where you're traveling on vacation this year?! Facebook is so awesome! Oh, and I posted this video as an example of all the cool stuff I experience through Facebook.
25. Usually on the day after Thanksgiving I spend the day getting out the Christmas tree (since we live in AZ, our Christmas tree is in a box) and decorating the house. This year, I started packing. I got out all my classroom teacher stuff and started purging. I mean, it's been almost 2 years since I've been in a classroom, and as you can imagine, the things I use for my job now are way different than when I was in a classroom! So, a lot of it I don't need. But there were also a lot of memories in that stuff, and I started realizing how lucky I was to start out teaching where I did. I worked with some good teachers who really taught me a lot, and I am so thankful for that experience.
26. You may not know, but I'm desperate for friends. Probably 60% of the reason I wanted to get a job was to have friends (I'm lucky I really like the people I work with!). It's hard when you're a mommy who stays home all day, especially when you're a special needs mommy. But I made a new friend recently, her name is Kristi. She has a special needs kiddo (who's totally different than Sadie) who's about a month older than Sadie and she came over to visit and hang out today. We didn't do anything special or especially fun, but it was good to see her. I am so thankful for new friends.
27. I am thankful for sleeping in Sunday mornings and family walks together. Recently we put Sadie on a very rigid schedule. She has a wake up time and she has a lights out time, and that means someone has to always get up at 6:50 with her. On weekdays it's not a big deal because I get up early and do work while the house is still peaceful, but on the weekends, sometimes I just want to sleep in. Sundays are the day that Brian gets up with her, and even if I don't sleep, it just feels nice to lay in bed and not have to get up. Then usually around 9:00, after we've eaten breakfast, and before football starts, we go for a walk together as a family. I love winter weather so we can do this. It's just a good time together...and Sadie loves being outside!
28. Today we signed papers on our house, and I am so thankful that it's over. No more stressing out that something is going to go wrong and we're going to lose the deal. And we had a to drive kind of far to the Title Company's office. Sadie did awesome in the car. She did awesome at the office. She was so good on the way home that we were actually able to run an extra errand! It was a good day.
29. I am thankful that I feel well. The night before, I had a really bad headache. I took some Tylenol with Codeine and I think that is the only reason I didn't throw up. But for the ENTIRE day today I felt drowsy. I wasn't tired, but I couldn't keep my eyes open! Either way, I was just glad the headache was gone.
30. The last day of thankfulness I am thankful for God's mercies, and that they're new every morning. Some days don't feel like they'll ever end. Some days are so hard that I want to wake up as somebody else. It's on these days that I can go to sleep knowing that tomorrow is a new day and God's mercies will be there waiting for me...and no matter how hard tomorrow is, there will still be another day.
So there are my 30 days of Thanksgiving. I hope you enjoyed reading them. I hope you found yourself giving thanks throughout the month of November. And I hope that even though Thanksgiving/November is over, we can all still find ourselves giving thanks on a regular basis and remembering that we have a lot to be thankful for in our lives.