I’ve always loved this time of year—seeing the beautiful leaves changing colors to vibrant reds and burnt oranges, enjoying pumpkin everything, bundling up in soft scarves and sweaters, the crisp cool bite in the air that carries the promise of crackling fires and big mugs of hot chocolate and cider. As soon as Halloween has ended, the anticipation of Thanksgiving begins to build. My most favorite holiday, the celebration of Thanksgiving brings fun family time, a whole day of fabulous eating, and an uplifting reminder to count our blessings. This year, I’m feeling extra thankful.
It’s amazing how much can change in just a year! This time last year, I was waddling around, feeling big and pregnant, knowing I still had months to go before my little one would emerge. At Thanksgiving, my cousins (two of whom were pregnant as well) and I joked about our heartburn, swollen ankles, and how different next year’s Thanksgiving would look once our little ones were here. At this year’s gathering, we’ll have three babies to fawn over and chase after—because two will be crawling all over the place and big enough to sample the delicious turkey day spread.
As someone who loves to cook (and loves to eat even more), I’m extra excited whenever I’m able to let little Graham try something new. He’s been a pretty adventurous eater so far, enjoying most everything from avocados and raspberries to Korean mandoo (dumplings) and Moroccan beef stew. I can’t wait to see his little face react as he tastes his first bite of turkey, a smear of cranberry sauce, a mouthful of green bean casserole, maybe even a nibble of pumpkin pie.
Every year around this time, I make it a point to take some time to contemplate what I’m most thankful for. Graham is the biggest blessing I’ve ever received, and I am beyond thankful to be his mama. His arrival has affected so many facets of my life. My heart has never been so full; my cup truly overflows. I’m beyond grateful for this little blue-eyed boy who has stolen my heart. He’s teaching me how to have more fun, how to love selflessly, to have more patience, to find more energy; he’s inspiring my husband and me to be better people. He’s made me see my husband in a different light—watching Matthew play with and care for Graham, having his support in this partnership of parenthood, watching him just be an amazing daddy—all these things make me love him so much more.
Having Graham in our lives has also made us closer to our own parents; seeing them becoming sweet grandparents and loving our son has deepened our relationship. I’m so very thankful for them! From helping us to prepare for our first baby during my pregnancy, to caring for us with food, cleaning, etc. when bringing our newborn home, to watching him for many hours when I first returned to work, they’ve given us so much support and love this year.
As we approach Thanksgiving, I have too many blessings to count, innumerable reasons to be thankful, and a whole lot of reasons to celebrate now that I’m a mama.