Heart of Gratitude: Day 8

It has been shared by very wise men and women that you should carefully consider who you are marrying. Not only the singular person to whom you vow to spend the rest of your life, but their family. On the day you say ‘I do,’ you become part of that family.

Butterflies were set to flight as we drove to Garden and Steph’s place for the first time. Before we could even get out of the car, family poured from the front door. We were greeted with giant hugs, warm smiles, and even a few tears. A few months later I learned that it was on that day, that they picked me.

For the first time in my life, my family includes three beautiful sisters. It has been awesome to see the way Lic approaches motherhood, Steph’s journey of pregnancy, and Rob’s success as a nursing student. And then, there are the spouses who join me as part of the crew, by marriage. These guys are creative, hilarious, fun-loving dads and supportive husbands. Our nieces are brilliant – and it’s pure joy to watch them explore their world around them through music, science, dance, sports and art. When asked what they would wear as flower girls in our wedding, McKenna, without skipping a beat, knew her plan: “My Spiderman shirt and jeans.” When you are with them, you can’t help but smile. The latest little addition just celebrated his two month birthday. His personality is starting to shine through and each time we see him, he seems to have doubled in size.

One of my favorite memories is the night I first met Grams and Gramps. We were out on the town with some of the prospective students and returned home to find Grams and Gramps waiting up for us. They were dressed to go to bed, but wanted to make sure to get a few pictures and say hello before calling it a night.

This post wouldn’t be complete without sharing the gratitude in my heart for my husband’s parents. They have been such an encouragement to us as we begin our journey as one. In many ways, they have walked our path and have shared valuable wisdom that will surely help to sustain our marriage. My sweet “mom-in-love” is a hard working woman and she has the tenderest way about her. With his vintage car restoration projects and love for storytelling, spending time with my father-in-law is always a good time.

Less than two years ago, I didn’t even know a single one of these people. Today, they are a very special part of my life – they are my family. What a precious gift!

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Photo courtesy Brianne Janae Photography (briannejanaephotography.com)

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