Time flies by fast, one minute school starts and the next thing I know, all the leaves have changed color and fallen. One second, summer was over and now, it’s that time of year again -- Thanksgiving. The period in our lives where we each take a moment to reflect, remember and give thanks for all of the great things that have happened all year. I for one love Thanksgiving, not just for the grand family feast that takes place every year, but for the mood that surrounds the holiday, both in nature and at home alike.

In order to help you guys get further into the holiday mood, here are a few things that I’m grateful for this Thanksgiving (in no particular order).

1. All of my loved ones

I’ve been blessed with many dear old (and new) friends and family, who’ve stuck by me through thick and thin. They’re the ones who get me through exams – by either studying with me or helping me to make time in our schedule so that I can actually study. They’re also there throughout all of the great days – they’re the ones usually making me smile or laugh, and on the occasional not-so-great-days – they’re the ones who are trying to make me smile and/or laugh.

2. All of the random opportunities

Personally, 2014 has felt like one of the busiest years of my life so far. I’m so grateful for all of the random (or not so random) opportunities that I’ve been fortunate enough to have gotten over the year, such as my first job! I call them random opportunities, but in reality they’ve all been things that I’ve worked hard to achieve and I’m grateful that so many of them we’re able to be fulfilled.

3. All of my beloved readers

I give you all a great big bear hug and a thank you, for sticking with me by reading Tiger Lilly and leaving comments. All that you guys do really means the world to me. Trust me, even if it’s just reading an article, sharing a post I’ve written or leaving a comment, it literally makes my day. I’m uber grateful to have you all around!

4. For being me

I decided awhile back that regardless of whether I wanted to or not, there’s no one else that I can be other than myself. Albeit, at the time I wasn’t that thrilled (lol), but each year I learned to love myself a bit more and I’ve finally come to a conclusion. I’ve realized that being me, especially if it’s the best one that I can be, is pretty awesome.

5. All of the opportunities to give back 

I’ve mentioned before how important I think it is to give back in whatever way that I can, whether it be by giving money or giving my time to a charity/NGO that I find worthwhile. I try to do a little bit of volunteering every year and I feel like 2013-2014 was really the year when I got to do a real medley of cool things, learn a lot and meet a lot of interesting people.

6. All of the memories

This year, I am definitely grateful for all of the fun memories I’ve had with my friends and family! I have been a lot more involved in activities within school (Rugby, school dances, and a few other leadership opportunities) and outside (Taekwondo, work, volunteering, exploring, etc.), which has definitely increased the amount of yearly highlights that I now have to look back upon.

7. All of the chances I’ve had to step outside of my comfort zone

I admit, that I’m not always the most outgoing person. At times I’m more content to be a Hobbit and stay at home curled up next to a good book, rather than actually go outside and participate like an actual human being. During the winter, those days are more common than most but this year I’ve definitely tried to get “out there” more. I admit, that at first I was sort of scared ( I had to start being a little bit louder and talk to a lot more people), but that’s normal when you begin to test the limits of your comfort zone! There are definitely a few more things that I’ve got to work on (i.e. less writing and more being outside), but at least I’ve improved (I stress a whole lot less and am more confident) and people have been welcoming and I’m very thankful for that.

What are you grateful for this Thanksgiving?