For every time your Mom annoys you with directions on how to make banana bread the RIGHT WAY today, be thankful. For every time your Abuelita takes too long to get out of the house, because she needs her sip of coffee and a bite of oatmeal prior to Every. Single. Outing, be thankful. For every time your brothers and sisters annoy you with calling dibs on the front seat or a bunch of arm pokes today (I’m an only child I don’t know how sibling rivalry works), be thankful. For every time you run outside screaming with the turkey in hand and yell “I CAN DO IT! I CAN BRINE! Can’t you just let me try something new and brine the damn turkey in this $40 brining garbage bag? I got the bag from Bed Bath & Beyond, WITHOUT A 20% off COUPON for Christ’s sake!” and then desperately hope that someone comes to rescue you from them, be thankful. For every time you want to go into your old room and cry for a second, because family brings out all the feels, be thankful. For every time you think you’d be having more fun if you were just with your friends, drinking and playing Cards Against Humanity today, be thankful. For every time you think, “Can't they just leave me alone for 5 seconds!?!?”, be thankful. For every moment you hear the annoying background chatter of a family behind you, be grateful. There may come a day where you’ll be following a banana bread recipe in silence, and waiting on no one behind you to get the ingredients with. A day where there’s no one at that home you grew up in, to roll their eyes at your terrible jokes. A day where you can go ham and brine your damn turkey with bourbon and Tony Chachere’s if you wanna! A day where you can just get buzzed off mulled wine with friends and play dumb games. A day where you have to ask no one to leave you alone. A day where that exasperating & maddening family chatter fades away and gets replaced with your favorite playlist on Spotify. On that day, you’ll also remember that every single, silly annoyance from those people who shared your flesh and blood, as vexatious it was in the moment, were also the people who would always end up loving you the most. You’ll remember that you would define them by sometimes rolling your eyes to friends, and calling them, “My Family”. Even on that day, you’ll also be grateful because you got 29 Thanksgiving’s with them, and some people don’t even get that. On that day you’ll remind everyone to stop and smile in the face of how truly trying they can all be, and then say to yourself “I’m thankful to have them” Enjoy your turkeys with the side of family torture, it’ll only make you cooler in the end. Sent with hugs, love and laughter.