Whenever November rolls around, and the countdown to Thanksgiving begins, it's hard not to stop and reflect on all of the blessings for which we should be thankful. Tonight my heart is so full with gratitude for my family that I thought I'd sit down for a minute and write about it.
One of the biggest reasons we decided to move was to be closer to family. And one of the biggest perks of being around family is all the free babysitting! But the free babysitting is just a small slice of the family pie. The reason behind the free babysitting is what makes me stop and give thanks nearly every single weekend. The bottom line is this - these people love Sylvia so, so much.
In the last month, we've been to three UK football games, and for two of them, my dad and stepmom agreed to take Sylvia. The first time, they kept her overnight and today they kept her for the afternoon and we picked her up late this evening. Mom and Jay have also watched her many, many times in October, and since we live with them, their babysitting services are usually rendered on the fly, as in - "We want to go to a movie that starts in 15 minutes, can you watch Sylvia?" Both sets of Grandparents are more than willing to take her whenever they can, and I'm sure that sometimes they don't really feel like it, but they do it out of love. They all just really love being Grandparents!
I'm so grateful for their love for us and for Sylvia, but I'm more grateful for the way they've taught her to be independent and confident no matter who she's with. Today, we dropped her off and within two minutes of her feet hitting the floor, she turned around and waved to us, shouting, "Bye-bye!" She has her clingy moments, but she knows when she's being left behind and she doesn't seem to mind one little bit! I think she knows she's about to be spoiled. The good news is, she's always happy to see us when we come back, so whatever these grandparents are doing while we're gone - it's working!
I can't wait to celebrate the holidays this year with our sweet Nugget and our wonderful family. Thanksgiving will be a little bittersweet, though. It'll be the first year we won't be trekking miles and miles from another city to spend a long weekend with the family, but we won't all be together this year. My brother, Evan, will be in Georgia, working on his basic training for the Army. I miss him a lot more than I expected I would. I miss him because Sylvia doesn't really know that he's gone or for how long, but I do, and whenever we're out at Dad's house and Sylvia's being super cute, I wish he was there to play with her.
So, when I go to bed tonight and count my blessings for all the wonderful family we have around us, I'll say a special prayer for Uncle Evan. I hope the family of soldiers he's found in Georgia is treating him as well as our family here is treating us!