All I Want For Christmas

December 14th marks the one year anniversary of the Sandy Hook tragedy. One year ago twenty babies were taken from this earth in the second deadliest mass shooting by a single person in American history.

Yesterday I came across this video on Facebook.

Emilie Parker was one of those babies taken from us. And yet, as her mother reflects on the unimaginable tragedy, she shares with the world that “Evil did not win”.

Also on Facebook, one of the first members of the DEN, RJ Stangherlin, shared one of the best posts I’ve ever seen:

“At HUP yesterday for a post-stem cell transplant MRI check. The result: lymphoma free. That makes me an official cancer survivor. God bless all of you for traveling with me on this journey.”

It’s easy to get caught up in all the holiday hype. The newest toys, shiniest electronics, and hottest new trends. As much as I love watching my boys light up as they open a new gift, I can’t help but think of those who would give anything to have what I’ve been blessed enough to have: a healthy, happy family.

So this Christmas, as I make my wish list, I promise to cherish every moment with my family and never take for granted the joy they bring to my life.

All I want for Christmas:

  1. For my 3 sons (Michael, Owen and Kellan) to know how very much I love them. How proud and humbled I am to be their mommy. How much I love every hug, every kiss, every laugh and every cry.
  2. For my husband Brian to know there is no one in this world I would rather share this journey with.
  3. For my parents- the infamous Frank and Fran- to know how blessed I am to be their daughter.
  4. For my siblings- Mary and Mike- to know how awesome it is to be their sister.
  5. For my Grandma Pierce- to know how much I treasure our texts, Facetime chats, emails and get-togethers. And how much I appreciate the example you have set for me.
  6. For my in-laws- MB, John, Amy, Dan and Mike- to know how grateful I am to have married into such a loving family, and how thankful I am that you welcomed me with open arms when I moved to Atlanta all those years ago. You made me feel at home.
  7. For my extended family- Oppold/Washburne/Pierce/Burns- to know how lucky I feel to be surrounded by the world’s most amazing family. All of the cherished family traditions- stockings from Aunt T, videos from Uncle Mark, Thanksgiving with the Washburne’s, 40th birthday bashes, grab bags and Lake of the Ozarks. The memories I’ve made with you are truly cherished.
  8. For my friends- near and far- to know how freaking awesome they are and how much I enjoy every hangout, phone call, email, text, and FB post we share.
  9. For my work family- to know how honored I feel to be part of a team that works tirelessly to transform teaching and learning, and has fun doing it.
  10. For me (yes Ginny, I’m talking to you) to know that I am proud of all that you have accomplished, and to never let your fears get in the way of your dreams. The world needs you.

What’s on your Christmas wish list?


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