As we approach a holiday meant, in part, to help us remember all the things we have to be thankful for in life, I thought I’d compile my own record of gratitude. While certainly not a complete list, when I sit down today and think of the things for which I am grateful, here is what comes to mind.

  1. Two miraculous children.
  2. An incredible partner/husband/best friend.
  3. A kind-hearted, ever-loving and faithful dog.
  4. The joy and comfort of sisterhood.
  5. Family and friends who see me and love me and being able to love them back.
  6. Memories of adventures past and the anticipation of those to come.
  7. The privilege of pausing in stillness and quiet.
  8. Blue skies and the memory of a warm summer sun on my face.
  9. Laughter with friends and how frequently I get to enjoy it.
  10. Good books.
  11. Vaccines.
  12. Hopes and dreams and the fact that, sometimes, they come true.
  13. Remembering my mother with laughter, joy and tears.

I could, of course, continue this list almost without end as my life is full of privilege, beauty and more good things than it seems any one person should be blessed with. And I could also make a corresponding list of the ways in which I struggle despite all that good, as that is kind of the essence of being human, I think. But for now I’ll leave this list as it is and share a few photos of some of these things that bring meaning and richness to my life, as I wish you all a fulfilling season of gratitude and joy.

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Catherine Hilcove Photography: Family Photography, Madison WI