Eva’s First Thanksgiving

Eva’s First Thanksgiving was spent away from her Daddy but with the rest of her family in Texas. The festivities pretty much lasted a week long. The first Thanksgiving dinner we had was early in the week at my mom’s house. I didn’t take many pictures that night, but here’s one of the few I took for my mom.
In the early afternoon of actual Thanksgiving Day, we went to Daniel’s sister’s house for lunch. She happened to also have a “gender reveal” party that day. I found out that I’m having my first baby niece, who will be Eva’s first first cousin. I’m so excited!
The evening of Thanksgiving we went to Daniel’s grandmother’s house (on his Dad’s side). Eva got to meet three of Daniel’s aunts that she had never met before, including the one whose Eva’s name came from. 
Early Friday morning, my little brother D.J. and I drove Eva up to Bandera, TX for a Thanksgiving meal with my Dad’s side of the family. It was the first Thanksgiving I’ve been able to spend with my family since 2005. I’m glad that Eva was able to spend some quality time with her Uncles Ryan and D.J. and most of my cousins. Eva wore the cutest little turkey headband made by Ashley’s mom (Mrs. Byrd).
Friday Evening we went down to the Alamo for the annual lighting of the Christmas tree and the Riverwalk parade. We didn’t end up staying for the parade, but we did check out the lighting, like I remember doing every year when I was a kid. It was beautiful.
Every year throughout my childhood, my family would go ride the train at Brackenridge Park during Thanksgiving weekend. I think it started with my grandfather and is the main reason we’d make the four-hour drive up to San Antonio from the Rio Grande Valley. Being the oldest grandchild, I was the first to partake in this tradition. 25 years later, our family has grown to 12 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren, and we’re still keeping the tradition alive. We even waited for a couple of trains to pass through so we could get our spot in the back.
After the train ride we ate Cooper’s BBQ in New Braunfels (DELICIOUS!!!) and did a little shopping in Gruene. Evita seemed to love the classic country music in one of Texas’ oldest dancehalls. 
Despite missing Daniel, I had a wonderful week. I think I have more to be thankful this Thanksgiving than all the others combined. I’ve had a wonderful year with countless blessings- to include my healthy, beautiful baby girl. I was able to spend time with my family and friends and eat four delicious meals. Life is good… mahaloz to all who have made it this way.

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