As we sit in our homes this weekend, we truthfully, we have never been so full. Our dreams are still haunted by turkeys, mashed potatoes, and stuffing; our main meals are going to be those amazing leftover sandwiches, cranberry sauce and all, for days. Oh and the desserts, don’t get me started on desserts. Needless to say, green smoothies and salads are going to flood our meal plan next week, lots and lots of greens.
More meaningful than the food (though nothing is more important), this past week was truly is about gratitude. From laughing at the dad jokes from my step-dad, making cute thanksgiving day crafts, and playing old-school board games while waiting for the turkey to finish cooking to sitting around the table looking at the amazing support systems and loved ones during family meals and dozing off next to your significant other while Thanksgiving Day football blares through the speakers, this day is always a blessing.
Giving thanks is something that is typically forgotten throughout the year – this holiday is a great reminder of what gratitude can do to the soul. This simple action opens our minds to think about what we are thankful for in our lives; as such we already know that one of our 2019 resolutions will be to meditate and complete a gratitude journal every day. Here are seven things we are especially grateful for this year:
- Loved Ones and Forever Friends: This year, more than ever, we are thankful for the people in our lives. 2018 wasn’t a breeze, are years’ ever considered easy when you reflect on them holistically? But this year was especially tough; without this support system, we wouldn’t be where we are right here and now: finally content in our careers, living in an amazing apartment near our favorite city, exploring this amazing planet’s hidden gems and wonders. Our loved ones and forever friends are there for us when the world knocks us down and when we lose sight of who we are – we hope and pray we are part of that network for others.
Additionally, believe it or not, our seven year anniversary was this past week. Since the day we met, we have been able to keep each other smiling and laughing and making us want to be better people for each other. Though we have both had hard times, times when we wanted to give up on our career paths or personal goals, times when we disagreed and didn’t want to be near each other, times when we felt lost and hopeless for the next steps in life, we never gave up on us. Especially this year, we are thankful for the support, love, and happiness of the other person.
- Traveling/Coming Home to Boston: Traveling by car, bus, train or plane to locations near and far is something we are not taking for granted. Experiencing different cultures, meeting new people, tasting regional delicacies and having a partner to travel with make this ability even more special. This year we are especially thankful for the ability to experience new cultures and we can’t wait to share all of our amazing experiences with you in the year to come!
But through it all, nothing beats coming back to a city where you know you belong. The pride we have after arriving back in Boston after a trip never gets old – sometimes it even makes the emotional one (yes, it’s Sarah) tear up as we drive through the city on our way to our apartment. It may not be the biggest or ‘best’ city, but this city does feel like ours, and for that we are grateful.
- Professional Careers: 2018 was a tough one for us in this department. Through layoffs and eliminated positions, this year was one of growth — a reset or fresh start on an unknown career. Luckily, we both are in positions where we feel valued, challenged, and respected, which is really all we wanted. We’re excited to see where the next years take us!
- Health/Sports and Athleticism: With the chaotic fun that came with 2017, 2018 brought a new found love for exercise. From bikram yoga and horseback riding to strength training workouts and hiking, we are slowly becoming more like the active people we were in our early 20s. It feels great to break a sweat and have the good kind of muscle soreness. Since we feel stronger and fitter than last year, we’re adding health to this list. We’re still working on the eating part (pizza is harder to give up than you think), but it’s still something we’re grateful for.
- Modern Day Technology: On the flip side, we are grateful for the technology we have in this day in age. Computers, cell phones, digital cameras, cloud drives, the list goes on and on. Keeping in touch with those afar, like Sarah’s brother who is in the Navy, is easier than ever with video chatting or snapchats. Not to mention, technology allows us to share our travel experiences with all of you — it wouldn’t be nearly as easy without blogs. Though it may be a blessing and a curse, especially at this time of year, we are thankful for the positive uses of technology.
- Foodie Mentality: Since both of us come from large, diverse families, we are used to arroz con pollo or griot and lambi on holidays and family functions, and we are more than thankful! This explorative nature in the culinary world has created a love for new cultures and foods associated with these cultures. Because of this, we have a diverse palate and our love of food goes beyond the need for nutrients and hunger — we love food for the flavor and creativity, and the conversations to be had around a good meal.
- Music: Like food, music brings people together, and for that we’re grateful for its existence. Though recent times have seen attacks on festivals or some of the largest concerts of the year, the thought that tens of thousands of people can come together peacefully is straight up magical. Like the famed Billy Joel once said, “I think music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.” And it’s true, music is a unifying experience that transcends language. It makes you feel — and for that we’re grateful to be able to experience it.
What are you especially grateful for this year? How do you reflect on what you’re thankful for during this time of year? Let us know in the comments below – we would love to hear from you!