Thanksgiving is really just the beginning of the holiday season, that if you choose, you may spend with more than just your immediate family.

It's come to my attention that while I love my family so much, not everyone is always as excited to see their family for holidays such as Thanksgiving. Some people even dread seeing their family and their disdain is masked by their appreciation for food.

Holidays, or any chance that I have to see my family, are occasions that I honestly have countdowns for. It makes me upset realizing that not everyone is as close to their family as I may be.

I am so blessed to say that I absolutely adore my family. My cousins absolutely adore my sisters and me, and I love them with my whole heart. There are very few things that make me as happy as my family makes me just by being around.

It surprises me that fewer people than I assumed place less of an importance of family as I do. While I am completely cognizant of the fact that families are very different just like every relationship in our lives, it just surprises me.

My sisters and I have such a close-knit relationship with each other and when I realize that some siblings barely even talk to each other, things like this never fail to surprise me.

If my great-grandparents were still alive, I'd thank them over and over again, for bringing our family here. And while my sisters and I are the first generations of our family to be born in the US, we still place the same exact importance on our family as my grandparents do.

I'm so thankful that I am able to keep a visit to my family a secret and successfully surprise them to where they are as excited to see me as I am them. While I may have scared my cousin instead of surprising my sister, he was just as happy to see me.

To be greeted every morning during a visit with hugs and kisses is a feeling unmatched. (Okay, maybe kisses from your pets is a close second.)

While my cousins here in California are all younger than my sisters and me, their energy levels may exhaust me but I love them with my entire heart.

My aunts and uncles are always so ready to welcome us with open arms that I hope that in the future, my kids and nieces and nephews have the same excitement my sisters and I have when we see our family.

And while grandmas are always the popular one at holiday get-togethers, getting to share a room with my maternal grandmother during my visits is one of my favorite things because all grandmothers love to bestow wisdom and a ton of love-- and food-- on you.

And to my extended family that I don't always get to see that much, I miss and love you so much. I look forward to the next familial occasion that I will get to see you at.

So to my family, I love you with my entire heart. Thank you so much for making our family so wonderful. Thanks Mom for allowing us to be so close to the rest of our family.