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Happy Thanksgiving!

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It's hard to believe 2009 is almost gone.  As we prepare our Thanksgiving feasts, eat way too much and begin to decorate for Christmas, Hanukkah and a myriad of other year end celebrations, it's a nice time to reflect on the things that truly make our life rich.  I have so many things and people to be thankful for, as I'm sure you do to.  I truly am a lucky individual and grateful for my very full life.  So, I thought I'd share a few things that I'm mindful of this Thanksgiving:

1.  After a torturous 2008, my dad has remained cancer-free for almost a year and a half.  Thank you M.D. Anderson!
2.  My family.  We're all so close and I don't know what I'd do without each and every one of them.
3.  My husband.  It took me a long time to find him, but it was worth the wait.  Aside from giving me the freedom and support to explore my artistic endeavors, being incredibly supportive, and providing our wonderful lifestyle, he's also brought my four amazing stepchildren into our lives.  They're just the best people ever and I'm so lucky to have inherited them. I know I don't tell him thank you and how much I appreciate him nearly as often as I should.
4.  Having my two youngest stepchildren home for a full year (and a bit) now after four years of studying abroad in Ethiopia.  Our lives are richer for having them back in Texas.
5.  Having something to share with my mom.  She makes handbags and I have my jewelry.  We've not always had a lot of common interests to share, but for the past year have worked together in support of each other to grow our individual businesses.  Dad has always said to mom, my sister and myself that we should be doing something with our talents.  Now we are (my sister's a graphic designer).  Mom and I have done several craft shows together...something I might not have done on my own, but truly enjoy doing with mom.  It's fun to share business ideas with her and encourage each other along the way.
6.  My unfailingly good health (knock on wood) and that of my family.
7.  No matter how bad things get, for some reason everything always works out for the best for me and my family.  Our guardian angels, I'm sure...the family no longer on this earth, but still a part of our day to day lives.
8.  My many, many, many dear, close friends all around the world.
9.  The eleven babies that many of those friends and family members have brought into the world this year in addition to the children they already have.  They make every day a little brighter.

I could go on for pages.  I truly consider myself lucky and I think it's beneficial to stop and actually think about it.  Sometimes we get caught up in the day-to-day and don't stop to realize how fortunate we are, for both the little things and the big.  Feel free to take a moment, if you feel so inspired, to comment on what you're thankful for as well.

Wishing everyone out there, in the U.S. and abroad, the very best on this Thanksgiving, through the holidays and in the coming year!

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