Thank You. You. Yes You. Thank you for reading. (30 days to be Thankful, day 30)

Today I’m thankful for you.
Yes you. The person reading this right now.
Because if you are reading this, YOU are important to me. You’ve friended me on livejournal or on Facebook or subscribed to my WordPress blog.
I’m important enough to you that you are taking time out of your life to read the words I’ve put down here.
You’re using social media to maintain a connection to me and mine.
And I’m so thankful you decided to do that. I appreciate you.

Thank you for reading.

All month, every time I’ve turned around, there have been more people to thank, more people I am thankful for, more people I want to mention. I thought I’d be struggling here at the end, but now I feel like if I had more time I could write a letter to each and every one of you.

So Thank You. Thank you for being in my life, in the lives of my children.

So much love to you!

PS, I ordered Holiday Cards! If you’d like one mailed to you, send me your address!

Thank You friends (30 days to be Thankful, day 29)

Thank you to so many of my friends-

I’ve only got two letters left, and there are so many people left to thank.
JT- For always being my big brother.
Ali- For all your amazing sense of style
Stephen- For your awesome insight on the world
AAron- For the workouts, and the motivation.
Rosa- For your smile, and your geek love
Zak & Jennie- For making my high school freshman year awesome, and for opening my eyes.
Andrew- For opening my eyes, and for your drive to find your happiness
Star & Renee- For being there when I really needed a friend.
Kate T- For the great memories and being one of my best friends.
Tiffany S- For leading the charge at TPing houses!
Jeremy & Elizabeth- For still being good friends, despite all the distance.
Elizabeth C- For hanging out with me and my family
Tara- Making business school great!
Shawni, John Mike, Mert, and family-Monica, Stacy, Mercy, Adam and family- For being friends with our family, for the babysiting and being the adopted Uncles and Aunts! I’ve got some great memories of you all.
Sue, Matt, Jill, and family- For climbing the dang wall, playing the weirdest games, and making great time together.

I’m grateful for you all!
Thank you!!

Thank You to the Hench (30 days to be Thankful, day 28)

Dear Hench and Henchlings-

Thank you for being the most awesome group of friends a person could ever ask for. There are, including the Henchlings, about 50 us in total, which is a rather large group of friends! I love how the Hench is always willing to pull together in a crisis. How if someone ends up in the hospital or stranded on the roadside, or needs advice, or anything, a simple email will elicit help and support.

I love the fact that those of us who are around will turn up for dinner once a week, and that when those far away visit, a party is sure to ensue. The Hench provides all of us a network beyond family, a network of people who care and love and are willing to work together despite our differences. I am so grateful to have all of you in my life.

I love the conversations, the discussions, even the ones that turn loud when a difference of opinion comes up. I’m grateful for the intelligence and the willingness to research, the time spent gathering and learning. I love the geekiness of the whole group as well.

Laura- You are the heart of the Hench. Thank you for hosting.
Dirk- Your stories and sense of adventure enrich all our lives, thank you.
Mel- Your kindness and willingness to help others is something I am forever grateful for.
Liz- Your inner geek and outer fan girl never fail to make me happy. I’m grateful for the way your mind works and always impressed by your ability to understand the world around us.
Amy- Always with a kind word, you brighten every room you enter. You are willing to help us out and provide advice and expertise when asked. Your movie knowledge is legendary, and watching you get excited about something is a joy to behold. Thank you also for holding my hand and keeping me entertained while I got my tattoo. I don’t know that I would have been able to sit through it without you. You rock.
Leo- You’re new, but I love the way you make Amy smile, and I have to thank you for reaching out and making friends with my husband, I know he always enjoys his time talking to you.
Christine- Your determination and willingness to help others is something I’m forever grateful for.
Jay- You have such heart, and an open mind. Also, you seem to make Christine pretty happy! Thank you.
Courtney- You are so smart! Thank you for all the times you’ve watched the kids for us.
Alyx- You’ve really grown into this amazing adult, and it’s been a pleasure to watch. Thank you for your open mindedness and your willingness to ask and to learn.
Jessie- You’ve got such a bright personality, and it’s always a joy to spend time with you.
Becky- We miss you so! You’re intelligence and unique point of view are a valuable asset, and you’re always so much fun. I am so thankful every time we get to hang out.
Sam- You entertain a room and inspire a loyalty that I think would surprise even you. I don’t get to spend a lot of time with you, but I always enjoy our talks. You fascinate me.
Gyan- Your geekiness makes my week. Thank you also for all the time you and Bobby spend chatting. We love hanging out!
Jamie- Your conversations are fun, and gaming with you is a blast. Thank you!
Crystal- Thank you for all the conversations we’ve had about Ollie and about food allergies. Thank you for the referrals, because it’s always great to work with you. I enjoy our chats!
Eric- I’m so thankful for your expertise and willingness to share it. Also, I always enjoy skating more when you’re on the rink!
Kevin- We don’t see much of you, but when we do, you’re always smiles and hugs and caring! Thank you!
Iria- Thank you for all your advice on Ollie man. I always appreciate your expertise. Also, you rock, and I love it when we get to hang out with you.
Rich- Your hugs always brighten my day. I love how dirty your mind is, and how caring you are. The way you step in and help is something I am always grateful for, and I really enjoy our conversations. Thank you!
Matt- I love watching you play with the henchlings. You’ve got a willingness to put yourself out there and a kindness in your heart.
Jasmine- You are so witty and so much fun. I wish we had more time to spend together, because I always have blast talking to you.
Julia- Your cakes are so awesome! I love hearing about your stories and watching you with the babies. You’re awesome.
Eric- I love how you make Julia happy, and how good you’ve been for her. I don’t know you very well, but I am thankful for you.
Alena- I love your tumblr and your geekiness. Time spent talking with you is always time well spent.
Oz- I greatly appreciate that you and Bobby get along so well and have so much to talk about. You bring a different point of view to many conversations and I value your opinion.
Rachel- I always enjoy our time together. You have a way of looking at the world that I really enjoy. You are an amazing person and I’m glad to know you.
Sean- I love that your way of looking at things is so diverse compared to others, and that you are willing to share that with us. We miss you and always welcome you!
Michael- What amazing adventures you are on! I’m super thankful for all your posts on facebook where you share them with us. You have a bright smile and a happiness that you share wherever you go. We miss you!
Spencer- You are always up for some great conversation, and I love getting to game with you or spend time with you. You are insightful and do your best to be helpful when you can be. I value the way you interact with all the kids, and your geekiness knows no limits. I love it when we get to chat and spend time together.
Husband mine- You rock, and I love you, and am grateful for you for so many reasons. As it relates to the hench, I love the way you’re willing to help on projects and handiwork, and the way you liven conversations.

Henchlings- It’s an honor to watch you grow and to be part of the “Village” that you are growing in. I love you all and greatly appreciate the chance to be “Auntie” to so many of you.

Hench- You all rock. I’m so very grateful for all of you. I love the time we spend together and the High Hench Holidays. THANK YOU!!!!!!



ps.  There is a lot of us, If I missed anyone, I am so sorry, but no less thankful for you!



Thank You to the OR crew (30 days to be Thankful, day 27)

To the OR crew-

Moving to Portland was a pretty big change for Bobby and I, having grown up here in AZ. (where we eventually returned!) We didn’t really know anyone, and had to meet people and build a network from scratch. We met some really great people who deserve some thanks!

Fyr and Nick- We were pretty lonely when you guys moved, and I wasn’t sure how it was going to play out at the start. But we grew closer and had some amazing adventures. You guys helped make our lives in Portland awesome. Thank you so much for everything, the dinners, the games, the trips, the adventures. We love and miss you guys.

Mike, dude. Seriously. DUDE. I am so thankful that I met you. I always felt like you understood me in ways others never have. You were always supportive and so sweet. I miss you. I’m gonna thank your wife now too, even though we’ve never actually met. I’m thankful for Amy because she’s a totally rocking woman, and she makes you happy. I’m thankful for things that make you happy, and you really do seem to have found your groove now, for which I am also thankful.

Niki and Matt- Thank you for having us in your home and playing board games. It was so nice to have a place to go and a chance to meet new people. I really appreciate how welcoming and geeky you guys are. Also, you send the coolest Christmas cards! We miss you guys, and are always up for another round of Betrayal at the House on the Hill. I think of happy things and you guys every time we play. Also thank you to Travis for coming to the games and being such a great dude.

To the LARPers- You made life fun and interesting! Thank you for the awesome nights and the chance to escape reality.

To Kit and his friends whose names escape me- Thank you for inviting into your games. I felt so much better about the move knowing we had a place to start.

Aswad- Thank you for listening. Thank you for all your insights and amazing thoughts. Thank for your willingness to be yourself, and to not let others limit you. Your drive to be you inspires me. So much love to you.

I know I’m missing people. Love to all our friends from OR. We miss you guys. I’m thankful to have been able to spend time with you and to have gotten to know you.


Thank You to all of Ollie’s people (30 days to be Thankful, day 26)

To all the people who have helped Ollie-

I need to thank you. I need to start with the nurse at the hospital who realized he was seizing, I don’t know who you are. I lost track of you in everything that happened. I suspect, if not for you, my Ollie wouldn’t be here, and I don’t know how to thank you enough. There will never be anything I can do to thank you for what I have because of your diligence.

Thank you to all the nurses and doctors who were there back in 2009 who took care of Ollie. One of the nurses, her daughter made a sign for Ollie’s hospital room in ICU, with his name on it. It still hangs on the door to his bedroom today. You saved him. It was horrifying and scary and I’ll never be able to express my gratitude enough. Thank You.

Thank you to Dr. L for listening and always having advice. Thank you for taking the extra 15 minutes with us to answer questions.

To all the people at the DDD and to the therapists who’ve come to our home to work with Ollie, thank you. Your hard work has helped him to keep moving forward, to keep making gains, and to continue to give me hope that we can get past this, catch him up to his peers. Special thanks to Vickie, his speech therapist, who has stuck with Ollie for years now, and who has been a stable influence on him.

Thank you to Ms. Tish at PCA, who took extra time with Ollie and helped him make great gains. She potty trained him, she held his hand and sat with him and made his life a better place. Thank you to Ms. Cindy at SP, who has taken special care of Ollie and who helps make him comfortable. Thank you for finding him a Teddy Bear to hold when there was a rainstorm, for all the hugs, and for helping make drop off easy.

Thank you to Ms. E and her team at the “special” Preschool Ollie goes to. They all love him so much and spend so much time with him. He’s come a long way in the year he’s been going there, and I know a lot of that has to do with the care and attention you give him. You have made a comfortable place for him to learn, and spend the time to help him learn. Thank you.

Thank you to my close friends and family who work with Ollie and give him the extra time he needs to process. Thank you to Mel for listening and to Laura for all the amazing work she does with him. Thank you to Grandma for continuing to find ways to reach him and being willing to watch him.

Thank you to everyone who sees Ollie and doesn’t question, who gives him time to respond and doesn’t press when he actively looks away. Thank you to everyone who give him a hug or listens to him talk.

I love my Ollie man so much, but he truly takes a village. Thank you everyone who is part of his village. I know I’ve missed many important people in Ollie’s life, this is just the start of everyone who deserves thanks.

Forever thank you,

Thank You to my co-workers (30 days to be Thankful, day 25)

Dear some of my favorite co-workers-

Andy- Who knows where you are, or what your last name even is. Days spent working at the movie theater with you were the best. You always made me smile.

The entire crew at the Answering Service- You know who you are. Thank you for making an insane job more bearable, and even fun. Denise & Patty, you guys were some of the weirdest managers I’ve ever had, but you were always ready with a sarcastic comment or witty remark to make the pain a little easier. Paul and Karen- You guys had a lot to share about life, and it was a pleasure to work with you. The rest of you, you all rock. THANK YOU.

FedEx, round 1- Thank you to the person who hired me. She told me that she loved my shoes, which I think of every time I wear them. And thanks to Josh, because the competitions we had made the busy days more fun.

FedEx round 2- Thank you to Andrew, for being one of the most responsible people I know, I was so happy when you were promoted, even if it meant losing the best loader I’d ever had. Thank you to Jess, for this bit of wisdom, “Admit Nothing, Deny Everything, and Make Counter accusations.” Thank you to Tim for singing the circus song on those bad days. And thank you to Amanda, for being so kick ass.

Sitel- Thank you to Mike and Casey. You know why. And thanks to my manager, whose name I have forgotten, because you understood.

MD:ELC: Thank you for giving me a chance to shine, and for letting me work the weirdest hours so I could get my job done. I loved working for you, and wish I could have stayed.

My current company- Thank you to Justin, for hiring me. You didn’t know what you were getting into, did you? But you were always entertaining and helpful, and the entry level job you hired me for let me get my foot in the door for my career.
To my current coworkers- This group is amazing, and I love it. You make this a great place to work, and I’m thankful for all of you. My manager is inspiring and amazing, and her manager has a way with words, a way of connecting my job to the rest of the business that makes me very thankful.

Thank you!

Thank You to my extended family (30 days to be Thankful, day 24)

Dear family-

I wanted to thank my grandparents on my Mom’s side, both of whom have passed away now. Thank you for loving my family, for the little gifts and long phone calls. Thank you for the trips to see us. Thank you for always welcoming us into your home. Grandpa- Thank you for Pink Purple Poke-dots and your sunny sense of humor.

Aunt Karen and family- Aunt Karen was always sunny but determined every time I saw her, and I miss her. Thank you to her, her husband, and her children for running in corn fields, riding on tractors, and blowing up fireworks. I did not get to spend a ton of time with them, but I always appreciated the way I was welcomed when we visited. And special thanks to Fred, who keeps in contact via Facebook, your posts make me smile.

Aunt Nancy and family- I always associate Aunt Nancy with the trees, which is a weird thing, I know. Thank you Aunt Nancy for teaching me about life and about opening your heart to others. Thank you to Beka for giving me a window into unconditional love. Thank you to Danny, who was always just smart enough to keep us from serious trouble when we ran around.

Uncle Bill and Aunt Debbie, the last time I saw Uncle Bill, before he died, was when I took Landon back to visit my mom. The two of you welcomed us with open arms, and treated Landon exactly the way a grandchild should be treated. The love in your eyes for him, even though you’d only met him the once, made me so thankful for you. I know we don’t agree on political issues, but you are amazing people, and I’m thankful to have had you in my life.
Cousin Bob- Somehow you were always my favorite, the big cousin I looked up to. Thank you for all the Star Wars and geek love, and thank you for being able to come and visit us. Having you around that one summer was a bright spot in my life, and I’ll always remember it. Tim and Amanda, Thank you for always being willing to include my little brother and me in your games, even when we showed up and took up space in your house. I have great memories of us all playing together.

Aunt Beth and Aunt Paula- Thank you for keeping in contact and inviting us to visit. You make me still feel like family, even though more than just distance keeps me from visiting. Thank you for taking care of Grandma as she aged. Aunt Beth- Thank you for being the fun Aunt, and for never hiding who you were.

Uncle Scott and Aunt Joyce- Thank you for hosting family get-togethers, and for sharing your horses. Visiting you guys is always a pleasure.

To the rest of my extended family on both sides, especially the ones that exchange Holiday Cards or keep in touch, Thank you. I love that I have that connection to my roots. You all rock, and I really appreciate the efforts to stay in touch!


Thank You to some special people (30 days to be Thankful, day 23)

Dear Katie, Erin, Fyr, and Josh-

The four of you got me through some rough times. You were supportive when I needed you most, and I miss you in my life. Thank you for being my friend. I feel like I need to thank you and also apologize to you, which is how the four of you ended up in a letter together.

Katie- Thank you first of all for sitting Bobby and I down and pointing out that we had crushes on each other. I’d like to think we would have gotten together on our own, but you certainly sped that process up! Thank you for taking initiative.
You were my best friend during a very weird time in my life, but you were a steadfast friend who really helped shape me into the person I am today. I miss having you around and I miss talking to you. I know that I was a stupid teenager who handled some things poorly, pulling away when I should have been strengthening bonds. I am so sorry. You helped me become a better person, and I will always be grateful to you.
Thank you for all the long walks, all of the sharing of dreams and ideas. Thank you for exposing me to new ideas and religions, and for encouraging me to question. Thank you for being my friend.

Erin- Jr High is hell. I really wasn’t sure how I was going to make it through when I met you. You helped me embrace my geek self and survive during a scary and rough time. The fact that we managed to stay friends for so long, despite going to different high schools is pretty awesome. Even though we’re not nearly as close as we once were, only keeping in touch via Facebook and the occasional run in, you still always bring a smile to my face. You are awesome, and I need to apologize for not being able to keep you closer. Our lives are so busy and so filled with our family and friends, but I want you to know that I am grateful to have you in my life. Thank you so much for being my friend, even now.

Fyr- Thank you for being yourself. You have always been a bright spot, and hanging out with you has always been and adventure. Thank you so much for all the stories. Thank you for all the times we drove the Geo Metro out to Apache Junction so I could see my boyfriend. Thank you for the off-roading, for the crazy times on Mill, for the hair dye and the randomness. Thank you for late nights spent gaming, and hours upon hours of Monkey Ball (and other games). You and I have had our ups and downs and up and downs and ups and downs. I love you like a sister, I always will, even when we’re on the outs. I’m sorry that you and I often get frustrated with one another. I’m sorry that we can’t be as close as we used to be, because I really do miss you. You are such an amazing person, and I know my life is richer for having you in it. LAT.

Josh- My freshman year of college was rather difficult, but you made it so much easier and so much more fun. Thank you for driving me around when I needed it. Thank you so much for going to watch movies and for people watching with me. I felt like we could talk about anything. I feel like I’ve apologized for all the things that caused us to drift apart. I miss you dude. Thank you for the years where we were friends, you enriched my life.

I want all of you to know that I think of you and smile. That I miss you having you in my life in a more integral way, and that I’d love to see you and catch up sometime.

with love,

Thank You to my “online friends!” (30 days to be Thankful, day 22)

Thank you to my “online” friends

Is there a word for people you feel close to over the internet, but have never met?
(Jason’s response of “Friend” is accurate!) This letter is for my friends who I’ve never met in person, but who hold a special place in my heart.

Tiffany & Gord- Thank you for being so open about your lives, for sharing. I love reading about all of your adventures, and your blog posts often make me smile. Your kids are amazing, and getting the future picture of life with boys is also awesome.

Nicole A- Your children are adorable. I love how sweet your posts are, and I the love you feel for your kids is evident with every post you make. I love your pictures, and the pics your husband posts as well. I feel like if we could sit down and let our kids have a playdate it would be epic. Thank you for all your posts!

Jason- I love the links you share, and I love your notes about customers. I really enjoy your point of view and your general love of fandom. Thank you!!!!

Jake- I feel like I know you in person sometimes because of our mutual friends. Thank you for making my friends happy, and for being a stalwart friend to them. I’m thankful for your posts, and wish you could come for a visit someday!

Brianna- Sometimes I think that you and I, if we lived close together, would be the best friends. I love reading about your family, and your husband. I wish I could give you a hug

Nicole T- I am thankful for your staunch defense of vaccines. You and your family are a comfort to me, and I thank you.

Jen A- You have so much strength. I can’t help but admire you, thank you.

Crissy- Seeing your son always brings a smile to my face and give me hope for my future. Thank you.

Melissa H- You’ve been through a lot, and been so strong. You inspire me. HUGS

Melinda- You are such an amazing person, and a great parent. Thank you for being so open and willing to share.

Melissa J- You continue to amaze me, and your strength shows with so many of your posts.

Monika- I really enjoy your point of view and your posts! Thank you!

Kirsteen- You are the strongest person I know. You have inspired me in ways I didn’t even consider. My heart swells for you. I am so proud of you and how you’ve gotten through everything life has thrown at you. Thank you so much for sharing, you rock.

Briana- I feel like you are in the trenches with me. Knowing someone else is going through some of the same things I am brings me comfort. Thank you for sharing your struggles. HUGS

Darlena- You are so open and so real, it’s a refreshing read. Thank you for being willing to put yourself out there.

And so many more. I love you guys. I love how the internet has brought us all together and I love the peek into your lives. To know that people living all over the globe care about me, and that I care about them, it’s an amazing feeling. I’m so sorry that I don’t have time to thank each and every one of you. Thank you for every post, for every picture, for every article shared and website linked. I am grateful to you all.

And thank you to everyone still on LJ, who still posts, who comments. You all rock!

with love, from that crazy online person,

Thank You to the teachers! (30 days to be Thankful, day 21)

Dear Teachers-

I want to thank all the teachers who I’ve worked with, and all the teachers that put up with me a student over the years. Teaching is such a challenging job, and the monetary rewards just aren’t there. So thank you for doing the job anyway. So many teachers have helped me over the years, I want to make sure that everyone knows that teachers are important, and I’m grateful for you.

Ms. Hackett, who changed my life. I sometimes doubt I would have made it through the horror show that is Jr. High without her reading class. She had us write in a book journal, which she read and handed back, and I could ask her all sorts of things. The main thing she wanted us to do was enjoy reading. She is the one who had me read “The Outsiders” for the first time, and she exposed me to the Titanic. She gave me something to look forward to every day in the seventh grade. She had a way of making learning amazing and fun. She inspired me to be me. I will always be thankful for her.

Mr. Schiesser was my high school Earth Science teacher, and he was someone I could talk to. He made the class so much fun, and he has such amazing energy. I wanted to make him proud of me, which meant I worked harder and learned more there than in any other science class I have ever taken. Thank you.

Mr. Lomeli supported weird clubs and helped keep us on track. He totally rocked. Thank you for letting us hang out in your room, you made high school a better place to be.

Ms. Chomokos, who put up with having both Bobby and I in her class at the same time. She and Bobby had arguments over correct answers, and got along like a house on fire. I also appreciate the way she helped Bobby out, and how she worked with him when he became a paid tutor.

I want to thank some of my elementary school teachers too. Ms. Pethel, for the seashells. Ms. Reed, for figuring out early how to get me to focus. Ms. Blumel who made second grade fun. Ms. Boyle, who helped me learn that reading is the best thing ever.

Thank you to all the preschool, daycare, and elementary teachers who have taught my sons. Ms Tish, who potty trained and worked with Oliver, and got through to him in a way no other teacher did. Ms. Cindy, who continues to work with Ollie and helps him through his day. Ms. Eckman, his preschool teacher who works with him and supports him, who has such great faith in my Oliver.
Thank you to the teacher who sat with Landon when he was 4 and helped him learn to write. Thank you to Landon’s teacher’s for working with him and helping him learn to focus.

Thank you to everyone of my friends who are teachers as well. You guys all rock. Thank you for taking care of and educating our children.

Forever thankful,

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