Barry Cousins in Oak Park, CA

This morning I am reflecting as I write this, watching the waves crash on the shore and slowly sipping my coffee (thanks to my husband). This moment is a much needed pause. We have so much to be thankful for! The last nine months have been filled with emotion, love and craziness….and so much wonderful family time.

As we gather with the Barry side of our family today, we will be enjoying a first. Today will be the very first time that all of the grandkids on Chris’ side of the family are all together at one time. Ever! This pile of kids up there in that photo…well it is almost complete. Today will be the first time that all 9 cousins are together.

This week these kids are making memories. With cousins visiting from New York, games and fun…and lots of good food…this is the making of some very sweet memories for all of these kids. Memories that will last a lifetime, and hopefully plenty of photos as reminders.

In a season of challenges, I am so thankful for the memories we are making with loved ones. Honestly, 2017 has been difficult. Chris lost his mom and his brother, there has been some really trying moments with RV issues and recently a car accident….YET…we have found so many sweet moments of love and connection.

Sibling love at Steven & Ashley’s Wedding in Santa Paula

Last month my cousin had a beautiful wedding which brought so much of our family together. In between the funeral and wedding we have:

…spent cherished moments with family from all over the country

Time with the New York cousins at Grammie’s Memorial Service
Chris & his sisters with Uncle Derrell & Aunt Patty

…gotten down and dirty emptying moms house until it sold

Sorting Christmas ornaments with my Sisters-in-love, Lana & Lysa
The victory selfie when mom’s house was finally empty

…crammed a whole lot of family into one jacuzzi


…shared some hot craziness in the pumpkin patch with the smaller cousins

Berglund cousins at Underwood Farms

…trick-or-treated with family

Halloween Trick-or-treating

… BBQ’ed at the beach


…visited the great-grandparents

Visiting with Mamaw & Grandpa Bob
Dancing with Grandpa & my cousins

…enjoyed time with my niece and provided her very first sleepover

Eisley’s 1st Sleepover at Auntie Jenn’s

So as I reflect on this season of life…how can I not be grateful?! God has blessed us beyond belief with all of these sweet family moments in a season of life that has been…well, challenging.

So as we prepare the traditional Thanksgiving Feast and focus on all of the blessings that this life is serving up, my heart is beyond blessed by all of these sweet memories that this season of life has brought.

Happy Thanksgiving friends. No matter where you are this holiday, may your home be filled with love, laughter…and sweet memories of the seasons and blessings of the times gone by.

4 thoughts on “Thankful

  1. Jenn and Chris: A Rabbi just told me that suffering is good! He said that until you’ve suffered pain and loss you can’t truly experience empathy and compassion. He’s got something there….think of how much we’re all evolving.
    Wishing you all the joys of the season and wishing we could see you all again, Aunt Patty


  2. Oh, I didn’t realize Chris lost a brother as well as his mother. What a challenging time for all of you, but wonderful that you appreciate the love and good times that are still there along with the pain. Love and peace to you all ❤️


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