It's been a pretty amazing year and God has smiled on me abundantly.
1. I am so thankful for my husband, who works hard for our family. I'm thankful for his tenderness, for his joyful openness to an abundance of children, for his wisdom.
2. I am so very, very grateful for Karoline Rose. There were some dark days and desperate prayers before she became a part of our lives. With her, I see so beautifully the mercy of God and goodness of His plan. Every day, every moment of her life has been filled with grace.
3. And then there are the other seven! My children are a joy to me and I am so thankful that I get to spend my days (and nights) in such wonderful company. I love living and learning with them.
4. Words can't really capture how grateful I am to Tim and Janette Smith, who work cheerfully, tirelessly, and generously to make the Real Learning forums a place of genuine community for me and hundreds of other families around the world. These are truly wonderful people and I ask all of you to say a prayer thanks and ask God to bless them this year. And, of course, I'm thinkful for all the other people who share so generously and make the forums such a beautiful place.
5. I'm grateful for Catholic Heritage Curriculum, Five In a Row, Catholic Mosaic, and the dear friends who helped me put together this booklist. Thanks to all of them, and the wonderful world of Catholic homeschool blogging, our family's life is full of good things.
6. I am grateful for Little House authors, both those of yesteryear and those of recent history. My life has been touched and shaped and changed by Laura and Lissa. And I'm grateful that, for me, even when the cover of the book is closed, I have a forever friend. This is a two-fer. It was Lissa who persuaded me to blog. And it was Lissa who launched this blog when I was way too sick to write, never mind begin a new pubishing endeavor. And she was so right about all the good this blog and the blogging community would be for me.
7. I am grateful for ESPN and especially for Monday Night Football. (more on that later.) For now, let's just say this job has perks--this is a 3+ pound football from Jacksonville. Karen and Lissa, it's chocolate! Never again will I say my husband doesn't bring me chocolate.
8. I am grateful for the Communion of Saints. When people ask the inevitable "How do you do it?" question, this is the answer. I am particularly thankful to St. Therese, St. Anthony, the Blessed Mother and (indulge me here on the canonization thing) John Paul II. They worked together in my life recently to bring about some pretty amazing miracles.
9. I am grateful to all the people who have been so kind to me and my family throughout my pregnancy and postpartum. We have received wonderful meals, beautiful gifts, and bouquet upon bouquet of heartfelt prayers. I am still overwhelmed when I think about how blessed I am to share friendships with such good people.
10. I'm grateful to know what it is to be truly healthy and well, in body and spirit. And this Thanksgiving, I'm particularly thankful that my mother knows the feeling, too.