Today I am thankful for my extended family.
My brother and sister who are several years older than me. They have always been there for me when I need them. They have loved me, encouraged me, and put up with me, as only a big brother and sister could (like paying me to be quiet, and telling my friends I was out of town for the month when they called and woke him up).
My Sister-in-law who is such a blessing, and encouragement to me. I am thankful that we are more like sisters than in-laws (who else would go out of their way, WAY out of their way, to attend my kids' basketball, volleyball, and flag football games, and to take care of the littlest princess while the rest of us went to teen camp).
My awesome niece, niece-in-law, and nephews. They are the some of the greatest young people in the world...and no, I am not biased at all (wink, wink). I love watching them grow up, and I love watching them grow in the Lord. I am thankful to be a part of their lives, and so thankful the they are a part of mine (Shrinky-Dinks, tents made out of quilts, and missing flights).
My aunts and uncles, and all of the things they have taught me in my life. Like how to shoot a dead limb out of a tree with a shotgun, and how to go snipe hunting (oh, the memories!).
My cousins and the memories we made growing up, and the fun we have when we get together now (riding three wheelers, and putting on dance recitals in the front yard).
My grandmother, and the strength, stamina, and spunk that she possesses (not to mention that she is great at shooting water balloons with a giant sling shot).
My sister-in-law and brother-in-law who have dedicated their lives to seeing people in the Dominican Republic come to know Christ as their Savior (and their wonderful tarantula killing dog Lou).
I am thankful for my extended family, and the way we all fit together. The things we have been through. The times we have laughed and cried together. The memories we have made. I am who I am partly because of these wonderful people that God has placed in my life, and I am blessed to call them my family.