1. Always first and foremost... I'm thankful for my personal relationship with Christ. To be able to just talk to and confide in Him is such a comforting feeling.
2. My husband, Jake Turner. What an amazing man. He gets me in a way that nobody else does. I was even thinking about that this morning. You know how you've dated some people and they were alright, but it just seemed like you were on different wavelengths and as great as they may have been, they just seemed a little off? I'm so glad God put Jake Turner in my life, we mesh so well.
3. My little Rae Rae! My Rae of sunshine. My RaeBug, Raeleigh Elizabeth Turner. WOW! Did I ever get lucky getting her as a daughter. I wanted a daughter so badly, and I don't think that was a secret. And God sure blessed us with an incredible one. She is so silly and we have SO much fun together. She is so beautiful and sweet and I love to take her out and show her off. She's amazing. Fun fact: I had Raeleigh's name picked out since I was about 18 years old. Rae is my Mom's middle name, Leigh is my middle name(also the first half of my Mom's maiden name) Elizabeth is my Dad's Mom's name and my Mom's Mom's middle name. Put it all together and it's a great tribute to my family, but also a very beautiful name (if I do say so myself... and I do;)).
4. My Mom. Jake may get me in a way no one else does. But whatever he doesn't get, my Mom does. We have the kind of relationship that we don't even have to finish our sentences and yet we still know what each other was going to say. She knows that in my moments of quiet, nothing is wrong I just need to be quiet (I love that about her and am very thankful for that). I love her for the way she raised me, and I love her for the amazing friendship we have.
5. My Dad. He's instilled so many great things in me. My work ethic, for sure. And although he always worked hard and late while I was growing up, he still made every effort to be at all of my events. And all parents reading this... please know how much that means to a child! I also get my OCD from him. And I'm actually thankful for that! I love having a clean and organized house. =)
6. Ryan, my brother. It was nice having a sibling to grow up with (though I'm still not sure if I'm giving Raeleigh one). I love the way we both appreciate the family we have in the same way. (does that make sense?) He may have been really mean to me when we were growing up, but when we became adults, we became great friends. I care for him in a pretty special way. He means a lot to me. And the fact that he and Jake are such great friends almost means even more!
7. Bethany! My sis-in-law. As long as I'm talking about Ryan I'm of course going to mention his awesome wife! Before there was Bethany, you could look at Ryan and just see something was missing... even when he was dating, something still seemed off. But then Bethany came along and has totally completed him. You can look at his smile now and there is so much more behind it. She makes him so happy and I am so thankful for that. She gives him the life, he's always deserved. And I'm also thankful that she's awesome, and treats him well, and loves design! I love having that in common with her.
8. My in laws! There are toooo many of them to list individually. But I am SO thankful for them. Jake came from a great family. And even though his parents are divorced, they both remarried and created new and awesome family's of their own. I love that I have an in town family, because sometimes it can be really hard with my parents living far away (yes I consider 3 1/2 hrs far away!) so it's nice to have family I can go hang out with for an afternoon and enjoy their company.
9. My grandparents. I lost my Papa when I was young (and actually was talking about him this morning and teared up, I hate that he's not here). But I still have 3 other amazing grandparents! I'm so blessed to have such loving, caring grandparents. I think of and am thankful for them every day.
10. My home. I know it's just an "earthly possession" but God undoubtedly blessed us with it and really am thankful for that every day. I kid you not when I say that at least once a day, usually more, I will be in my house and stop in my tracks and just look around and smile. It is definitely a "home" and it's our forever home and I can't wait to create so many memories there.
11. My job. When I lost my job in 2008 it was...... A BLESSING! I was over worked and under appreciated. So I started looking for a new job, I was even offered one and turned it down. I cried about turning it down but I just knew I was supposed to. (Again... thanking God for being Someone I can talk to and confide in... He had a better plan for me and I knew it.) And after just a couple months of being out of a job, I saw a posting on craigslist, and long story short... I have an awesome job! Where I am extremely appreciated.
12. Techology. I'm thankfully that Raeleigh and I can get on webcam with my Mom for a quick chat. And I'm thankful that facebook exists so that I can constantly be sharing pictures with my family.
13. Roxie!!My pup. I got her as soon as I got out of college and she's been by my side through a lot... different boyfriends... different jobs... different houses(6 since she's been around). And she was always my constant. I appreciate her for being so sweet and snuggly. And although she has a temper sometimes, the good times outweigh the bad and I love that little peke-a-poo!
14. Friends. Good friends are hard to find. Especially when you are an adult. So when you find them, you are that much more appreciative. Jake and I have a lot of great friends and we are thankful for all of you. But I can't help but have Sarah and Jeremy Wells come to mind. We don't hang out often but when we do I love it. We mesh so perfectly. Jake and Jeremy are both equally goofy and Sarah and I have so much in common.
15. Kari Vaughn. I can't mention friends and not mention my favorite friend in the world! We met in college and got an apartment together. We barely knew each other when we moved in together. We just knew our boyfriends were good friends. We went through a lot together. We were friends at a very emotional time in our lives and it grew our friendship so deeply. We had a weird spell where we stopped talking, which I think happens to a lot of friends, but you know your friendship is strong when you can go through that and still come back together to continue an awesome friendship. I really wish she didn't live in Alaska now because I sure would like to hang with her more than once a year!
16. Nature. God's creation. Do you ever just look around and take in the beauty of nature? I sure do. The clouds, the trees, the hills. That may sound cheesy but it is definitely something I am thankful for.
18. Church. A place I can go each week and be surrounded by a body of fellow believers. Jake and I are fortunate enough to have 2 great churches. Ours here locally, Stonebridge Church. And ours in O'Fallon, Faith Chapel. Love them!
19. Our cars. Again, just earthly possesstions. But I am thankful that we are blessed with 2 cars, both totally paid for, that can get us to and from work each day or where ever we need to go. Not everyone has this, so I don't want to take it for granted.
20. Springfield. Kind of another cheesy one. But I love my town. I loved growing up in StL with the vastness of it and all it has to offer. But I love Springfield and how it feels like such a close knit community. It has everything we need on a daily basis and anything else we'd want... there's always StL!
*bonus 21.* I can't stop at 20 because I'm also thankful for the rest of my family. My aunts, uncle and cousins! Love them all. Even if I don't talk to them often, I think of them alllll the stinkin time.
*bonus 22.* I've decided another friend deserves his own separate acknowledgment and that is Jake Wright. We've known Jake for years, but it's been just in the last year that we've spent a lot of time with him and he's become family. We love to have him over all the time to eat dinner or just hang out. I'm so thankful for the friendship he gives my husband, I'm thankful for how sweet he is with Raeleigh and I'm thankful to have him as a friend myself.
Again this is just a summary. I'm thankful for MUCH more than this. And I've probably missed something important so forgive me if I did. But there ya go, my thankful post.