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Happy Holidays! Give Thanks this Season

A little boy happily hugs his mother as she receives a gift from him on Christmas morning.‘Twas the day before the night before Christmas and all through the house, this mom is worrying about everything she hasn’t gotten done yet – no perfect holiday photos with Santa, no delightful afternoon baking Christmas cookies with the children, no carefully wrapped presents under the beautifully adorned tree. So much to be done and so little time to do it – a common theme that everyone, most of all moms, feels throughout the winter holidays. However, despite the commercials, the Hallmark Channel movies and the holiday specials, the magic of this season lies not in what we have been purchasing or preparing but in what already is under our roofs and around our tables.

Even with the chaos of the holidays, there is no better time to take a moment, reflect and give thanks — thanks for the blessings, the people and yes, the craziness that is my life:

I am Thankful for my Messy House:  Under this roof, we live our life together, we laugh, we argue, we cry and we hug. We come rushing in from work or school, drop our things, ready to share about our days. I’m not the best at making sure everything is picked up, that the beds have fresh sheets or the bookshelves have been dusted. But, my house keeps the toys, the games, the books – and most of all, the people and the memories – that make our world go around.

I am Thankful for my Dishwasher:  It always needs to be loaded or unloaded, but it is a sign of many family meals, of a kitchen that is constantly open for business and of growing children that we are continually feeding.

I am Thankful for my Minivan: Those “magic doors” that help me get children, backpacks, car seats and groceries in and out. The fact that I can fit 7 people, including myself. The fact that it is comfortable because I spend half my life in it, these days. The fact that it is not luxurious so I don’t mind that mysterious ding that happened in the Publix parking lot or the fact that I continually hit my side mirror when pulling into the garage.

I am Thankful for my Laundry Room: It may look like Target, Kohl’s or Goodwill exploded in there, but my children have plenty of clothes – and hand-me-downs – for all the spills, falls, stains and life that happens to them. The laundry room also has a door so I can close off the endless pile that seems to duplicate itself when I’m not looking.

I am Thankful for the Experts in my Life: The pediatricians, dentists, teachers and network of people who keep my children on the right track. When I don’t know what is going on or what I’m supposed to do, I have trusted resources that I can call for help.

I am Thankful for my Village: The coworkers, family members, friends and neighbors who keep me sane, who assure me that I actually am doing a good job, who offer advice when I need it or a soft shoulder on which to cry. When my life exhausts me and I don’t think I can do it, this group recharges me and sends me back into the game!

I am Thankful for my Spouse: He is my partner in crime, my co-parent, my best friend and probably the one who can frustrate me the most. Together, we have created this little world of crazy, these little people who continually need something from us and these mini-mes and mini-hims who are growing into amazing individuals – in spite of everything we do wrong!

I am Thankful to be a Mom: Peace Corps gets credit for the quote, “the toughest job you’ll ever love,” but motherhood surely deserves the right to use it. Despite every job I have ever had, every task I’ve ever done, nothing challenges me, pushes me, irritates me or rewards me like motherhood does. There are days when everything goes wrong, no one is happy or healthy and everything that needs to happen doesn’t – and then a little one crawls in my lap and says “I love you.” Then all is right with the world.

Everyone’s story is different and despite what Facebook, Instagram or the Hallmark Channel tells us, no one’s is perfect. Each one has its merits, its moments, its stress and its struggles – and in all of them, there are reasons to give thanks!

Happy Holidays from our families to yours!  And as always, Happy Parenting!

The Baby Pibu Team