I'm thankful for my parents. Dad, Sue, I truly can't express how much it means to me to know that you love me enough to let me follow this dream of mine. Thank you so so so much for helping me through the whole process of getting here and supporting me the entire way. Thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you. I'll probably never be able to say it enough but just know I really do appreciate everything you do for me and have done for me my whole life. Next year I'll be able to give y'all a big hug on this holiday.
I'm thankful for gorgeous days on the beach (in November, no less!).
I'm thankful for this absolutely stunning country I get to experience for a year. It constantly has surprises in store for me. I'll never get tired of all the amazing views and history and food and just all of it. These two and a half months have been beyond incredible and I can't wait to see what the rest will bring. I'm so beyond grateful to have this opportunity. This is a once in a lifetime chance, and I won't waste a second of it.
I'm thankful for my host family. I really am part of this family now, and I'm so grateful they opened their home and hearts to this crazy American exchange student.
I'm thankful for Sunday afternoons spent with my host dad, wandering around Galicia and sightseeing.
I'm thankful my host mom is funny and that we are close enough to make jokes like that.
This is a marmot:
I'm thankful for my wonderful sister. She is seriously the only reason I found my way around anywhere the first few weeks and is without a doubt my best friend here. Only for her would I post such an embarrassing photo of myself.
I'm thankful that I'm no longer a picky eater, because everything is just so delicious and I'm not afraid to try anything. Even filloas (crepes) made with tuna fish, tomato sauce, and peas for a midnight dinner with your host sister. And even a bite of tomato wasn't so bad. And rice with squid ink. And lots of other wonderful dishes. Including a whole fish, head and all.
I'm thankful for everyone I love- The Burke family (I'd name you all but... there's rather a lot of you. I seriously love my "Oh, The Places You'll Go!" book, it is great to have here. I love you Grandma!), Lynn and Annabel and Bruce (you all are forever my family), the Shoopmans, all my friends back home (I want to give individual shout outs but I'm afraid I'd leave someone out, just know you're all fabulous), my AFS family (what would I do without you here in Spain with me?), my Spanish friends who have been so great to the American these months, and everyone else I'm probably just forgetting at this moment but I know there are just tons and tons of people who have been there for me and supported me all the time, and my dog (hi Robin).
I honestly feel like I am the luckiest person on earth. I just feel so humble thinking of everything I have. I may not show it nearly often enough, but I am so grateful for everything and I don't take a second of this life for granted. I'm so lucky just to have basics like food every day, a home, health, and an education, let alone to be blessed with so many opportunities and surrounded by people who love me. I will be so happy to get home and hug my family again, but I know they're waiting for me at the end of my 10 months and I have a new Spanish family to hug in the meantime. And that is far more than enough.