Thanksgiving has always been special to me, but it’s probably not for the reasons you think. It’s not about getting together with family or having a big feast. For me and our family it’s special because of Anna and Karlie. November 23 was Anna’s birthday and Karlie joined our family shortly after Anna’s first birthday. She was actually Anna’s first year birthday present. What a present she was!

Last year we celebrated Thanksgiving in San Diego and were incredibly thankful that Karlie made the trip there from Indiana. We had a wonderful meal and spent time on the balcony enjoying the weather. She was happy and making a comeback from some health issues related to her GOLPP. Little did I know this was a short reprieve and in less than three months she would get her wings.

So this year is bittersweet for me as it’s the first year without Anna or Karlie. Although Anna has been gone for over three years, it’s the first year without Karlie. To me it feels like an era is over – the Anna and Karlie era. These two sweet girls were a part of our family for over 12 years, with Karlie outliving Anna another two and a half years beyond that. I have a lifetime of memories of them and our celebrations which always involved cake, ice cream, and new toys for both of them. This year I’ll be content with my memories and knowing they are watching over us and having their own celebration.

Anna and Karlie on Anna’s last birthday waiting to eat their birthday muffins.

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