I had the most wonderful Thanksgiving week surrounded by my big, crazy, lovely family.
Here’s what went down, in no particular order:
Pumpkin spice coffee, a good book and the Macy’s Day Parade. Impromptu cousin dance parties. Celebrating my Grandma’s 70th birthday party at a little Italian joint the night before Thanksgiving. The family taking turns giving toasts to this incredible lady, most of us simultaneously crying and laughing throughout this process.
Making parodies about pie. Cousin secrets. EATING ALL OF THE FOOD. Braving the Black Friday crowd to make a late night Starbucks run with the girls.
Hanging out with horses and my little sister, aka the exact replica of my six-year-old self. My aunt said she recently walked into a room, seeing Kaylee in her new glasses for the first time and her immediate reaction was “Tina?!?” She was so caught off guard by the uncanny resemblance that for a split second, she thought my little sister was a younger me. It’s pretty cool that together she and I have the superpower to transport people back to 1995.
Realizing, for the first time, that my daughter crinkles her nose when smiling really big, just like I do. My heart turning into a big goop of mushy love. Seriously y’all, there is nothing else in the world that makes my entire being explode with overwhelming joy like my own little person grinning at me.
Weekend away at the in-laws. Intense games of dominoes. Small town boutique shopping with my mom-in-law. One of said shops offering free wine to browse with. ALL OF THE FESTIVE HOLIDAY THINGS. A starless night turning plans of stargazing into moments of cloud-gazing with my dude. The mixture of a bonfire, wine, loved ones, and the outdoor view of a lit up indoor Christmas tree filling me with happy, fuzzy feelings. Boudreaux family selfies.
Having such a big family has always been something I’ve loved and have been grateful for. The past few years I’ve just become even more appreciative. A few summers back, my best friend and I were traveling together when I was telling her a story about a recent Cirotto getaway. I was a little taken aback when she admitted envying me for this family. It was the first time I really realized that not everybody has this. Not everyone has a humongous, hilarious, wonderful, wild tribe to call their own. I started to fully understand in that moment how very blessed I am. I get to be a part of a bigger something that is not only a part of me, but that has helped shape me into the person that I am today. I was born with a built-in support system, strong and unwavering and beautifully imperfect. On both sides of my family, I have the chance to share holidays and memories and life with a group of people who love and know and drive me insane in the best way possible. Who have seen me in diapers, in a wedding gown, in a cap and gown and in various states of complete hysteria, like the time I manically ran through my neighborhood, with high hopes of catching and then murdering my brother. (Who had shot me with a water gun on a good hair day.) Somehow I even got lucky enough to marry into another clan full of even more unconditional love and craziness. I couldn’t imagine my life without any of them. And I am so incredibly thankful.
(Pst. If you’re wondering what it’s like to share the holiday season with me…..)