I am taking a week-long online journaling "reboot" through Lori Pickert's wonderfully inspiring Project-Based Homeschooling, and the first prompt asked us to write one sentence about something for which we are feeling gratitude. The girls and I had just returned, hours before, from another camping trip, up at Maumee Bay, Ohio, and I knew immediately what I wanted to write about. It took more than one sentence.
I am feeling gratitude for the hours I spent with these amazing women, who I also happen to be closely related to! My cousins (sisters) from Wisconsin, my sister, and my cousin from the east coast all drove with their kiddos to meet us for a couple nights of camping. We ate delicious food, hiked, swam, built campfires and played kickball, but the very best part were the conversations that linked those activities together. (Ok, kickball was pretty awesome, especially this one moment where I was on deck and watched my sister running across home plate, closely followed by two cousins, all running like their lives depended on it, and let me tell you, I was doubled over laughing so hard I was trying like mad not to pee, and it was beautiful and funny but I am getting distracted...)
One of my cousins commented that it was so nice to feel that even though we might not know each other well, we feel close enough to talk thoughtfully and intimately about the things that matter in our lives. For her it was because we are family, and there is trust and acceptance that she doesn't expect from other people in her life. It is rich, that sharing and listening, the cackles and the laughter. Ah, I love it.