1. My husband.
I am so fortunate to have a partner who continues to love me unconditionally, make me laugh uncontrollably, and inspire me with his creativity and mind every day. He is a hard worker, a great dad to our furry daughter, and a wonderful friend to many people, including me. I am so grateful to have found the other half of my heart and look so forward to what this coming year holds for us as a couple.
2. My ridiculously awesome job.
There are days when I say to myself, "Wait, is this really my job?" And I am not bragging about it, I mean I am just so totally grateful for it. Also, my job is really hard and has very long hours and keeps me away from my family often so it is not perfect, but it is pretty close. I am grateful that I figured out a career that I love, and that I have landed in a place that I feel totally authentic. I have traveled all over the world for this job this year and have gained a global perspective that I have never had before. I have met children and their parents in their countries and in my office here in the States. I have heard stories that have broken my heart, made me incredibly joyful, and have made me feel so much closer to the world. Oh, and this little cutie will be joining my school next week all the way from Hong Kong!
3. A baby!
This year my brother and his wife announced that they are having the first Macellaro grandchild. She will be coming into this world right after the New Year in February and I cannot be more excited. She will be born into a family with more love than they know what to do with! I was just born to be an Aunt and cannot wait to meet this little girl!
4. The parents.
I am so thankful that my parents are doing well. That there have been no hospital stays, no health scares, nothing this year! My father, after his heart surgery and early "retirement" has jumped back into the work force part time since he was going stir crazy being home. He is not driving his big truck anymore, but he is still driving and seems happy about it. My mother and I continue to meet most Sunday mornings at the Goodwill for mother/daughter bargain hunting, a tradition I cherish. I live right down the street from my folks for the first time in my adult life and I am so grateful we are so close. I cannot wait to see them in their new role as grandparents this coming year, they are going to be incredible.
I ask myself all the time how on earth I got such a wonderful MIL. I am so lucky and cannot be thankful enough for all that Bonnie has done for me over the years. When I lived far from my own mother Bonnie made me feel like her own, always caring for me, surprising me with thoughtful gifts, and treating me like part of her own family. I did not have the chance to see Bonnie this year, but have made a promise to myself that this summer we will see each other either in her town or mine. She is a wonderful person and I am so grateful for her this year and every year.
6. My Friends.
God, I am so blessed in this area. I have friends around the country and in my own town. They are spunky, unique, hilarious, creative, talented, beautiful, and honest. I have a friend I have known most of my adult life who I still consider my bestie. I have new friends from many different places that have quickly become important to me. I have friends I have met a work that have changed me forever. I am so lucky and I love them all.
7. This old dog.
Ella has been in my life since she was 6 months old. She will be 14 this year. It is hard for me to believe that she has been in my life for so long and it is really hard to imagine my life without her. She is healthy, albeit a bit slower these days. She sleeps more, but still eats like an puppy. She can't hop up into the car without some help, but still will bolt like a sprinter if she sees a squirrel on her territory. She is a good girl and has been a wonderful soft spot in my life. I am thankful for this pup every single day.
8. Local Music
I love music. I have always loved music. And now that I am back in my home state I am so incredibly grateful for and excited about what is happening in music here. It was a great year of local shows and festivals and I anxiously await the upcoming year with open ears!
9. New family members.
With a baby on the way I have been fortunate enough to get closer to our new family members. With a marriage and a baby many things change in a life and for a person from a small family I am grateful to have more folks to call my "own". I have no doubt in my mind that my brother's baby will be loved incredibly well.
10. My health.
Well, I have made it through a year with not one major cold, injury, or ailment (knock on wood) to speak of. I even spent six hours in a very questionable emergency room with a colleague in China. This year, more exercise, more meditation, and cleaner eating are my goals to maintain this health streak!
So, as we move into 2014, I hope that you all have many things to be grateful for this year. I have some friends who had difficult years, friends who have faced incredible loss, friends who have just begun new and exciting professional journeys, and friends who have welcomed new people to their families. My sincere wish for each of the people in my life all is a year ahead of love, laughter, and light.
Happy New Year!