What Advocate readers are thankful for

Nov. 27, 2013 at 5:27 a.m.

Thomas De Los Santos Jr., Rowland Elementary School kindergartner, sits with his sister, Lydia De Los Santos; his mother, Mari De Los Santos; and his father, Thomas De Los Santos, at the school's annual Thanksgiving Feast.

Thomas De Los Santos Jr., Rowland Elementary School kindergartner, sits with his sister, Lydia De Los Santos; his mother, Mari De Los Santos; and his father, Thomas De Los Santos, at the school's annual Thanksgiving Feast.

Happy Thanksgiving, Victoria Advocate readers.

Thanksgiving is the time of year we gather with family and friends to reflect on the good things from the past year and all of the blessings in our lives. We asked our readers to tell us what they are thankful for this year. Here are their responses:

What are you thankful for?

I was diagnosed with breast cancer July 9 but have so much to be thankful for:

  1. My God, for letting us find this before it had done more damage to my body.

  2. My wonderful doctors and their staff here in Victoria and MD Anderson in Sugar Land for their kindness, caring and professional help.

  3. My husband for hanging in there with me and the countless trips to Sugar Land and my precious family for being there for me.

  4. My wonderful friends for rallying around me.

  5. Finally, for all the prayers that have been offered for me. I am truly blessed!

Eunice, Victoria

The things I'm thankful for this year are the things I'm thankful for every day. I'm thankful for my large family and the ability to pick up the phone knowing someone is going to be there when I need them. I'm thankful for my hardships, for without them, I would fail to recognize the good times. I'm thankful for the air in my lungs, the corns on my feet and the aches in my back because they show the years of hard work to provide for my family. And last but not least, the good Lord above for the sight, sound, taste and touch to know life's simple pleasures.

Rebecca, Ganado

This year, I'm thankful for having my grandparents, Mary K. Lara and John and Olivia Sanchez, here with me and my family. I'm blessed that my children get to be with them. Each one of my grandparents have had their illnesses putting them in and out of the hospital and giving us big scares of almost losing them. It's been a tough year. They are still fighting the battles but are grateful they are still here. They are our bond that keeps us together and makes us stronger. Family - together, we have it all!

Katherine, Victoria

I'm thankful for my parents and grandparents who gave me good genes and a good upbringing. I'm thankful for Victoria being such a good place to grow up as a child in the '50s and '60s when times were better. I'm thankful for all my teachers and for David Sheffield at First Victoria National Bank who gave me my first loan so I could go to college (Gig 'em, Aggies). I'm really thankful there weren't iPhones, computers and video games then so I learned to love to read.

I'm especially thankful that presidential terms are just eight years max.

Donald, Victoria

On March 7, I was chased by three pit bulls on Highway 87 and needed therapy for almost half a year.

On Sept. 1, I was bitten by a 5-foot rattlesnake and never heard it rattle. Guess I scared it.

My wife, Cherre, took me to Memorial Medical Center in Port Lavaca. I saw my life going by me, and it reminded me how short life can be.

My leg swelled to three times its size, and my foot turned black.

Thanks to the community for all the prayers and get-well wishes. This all certainly messed up my golf game, and Cherre got tired of doing my work.

Russell, Port Lavaca

Thanksgiving is a time for family and friends, also, stuffing your face and watching football all day.

One of my family's many traditions is going out and shooting the Thanksgiving turkey. I've had the opportunity to bag the turkey two years straight. Whoever shoots the turkey gets to carve it.

Thank God for family. Without family, there would not be a reason to have Thanksgiving. Just imagine having a big feast with one person to eat it all. Now that's sad. So, among all these things I'm thankful for, I am most thankful for my family and friends.

Matthew, Tivoli

We went shopping for Thanksgiving - anything; all we found were stockings, trees and ads for Black Friday. We have almost forgotten about taking time to give thanks.

After recently closing our store, we say thanks for 28 years of serving you. To say we are thankful is easy, but to really show thanks is not so easy. This Thanksgiving, give of yourself. A smile is so easy to share; a hug may be hard, but you will get a hug back. So find something to be thankful for and share.

God bless everyone, and happy Thanksgiving.

Billie and Billy, Victoria

I am thankful to live here in what is still the greatest country on God's green earth.

I am thankful that my grandparents immigrated to this country because of the repressive, dictatorial regime in their homeland.

I am thankful our founders established our constitutional republican form of government that has made this great nation.

I am thankful for the excellent medical facilities, doctors, nurses and Citizens Medical Center in Victoria, to whom I owe my life.

I am thankful for family and friends.

James, Ezzell

I am thankful for many things. But there is always one thing that comes to my mind, and it is my livestock. People have pets, and I have lambs.

Without my lambs, I would not know what to do. Every day, I always look forward to seeing my lambs after a long day. Feeding and training are the main priorities of having a good show lamb. I have high standards for all my lambs.

I am also thankful for the support of my family, and I am thankful for all the amazing opportunities that I have been given.

Analiese, Tivoli

Some people have baseball, football, basketball or even golf players as their heroes, but my heroes are my doctors and nurses! Without them, I wouldn't be here today.

I thank God that I was born in the greatest country in the world, the United States of America; the greatest state in America, the great state of Texas - the Lone Star State, the friendliest state in these United States - where we are blessed with the best medical facilities, the very best doctors and the very best nurses.

I thank God that I was born in these United States of America!

Thank you, God, for blessing me!

Gene, Port Lavaca

I'm so thankful for my husband, Charles, who in 2008 gave up his job to take care of me after I spent five months in the hospital and had to learn to walk again and was not able to be alone.

Charles did all the laundry, cooking, cleaning and all the things I couldn't do for myself - and never complained. Times were hard for us, and if not for friends and our neighbors, we wouldn't have bathroom tissue, paper towels, etc.

We have been married 47 years, and he never fails to surprise me. He's the love of my life still.

Beverly, Victoria

Last year, November 2012, my husband, Pat Dolan, was told by his oncology doctor and M.D. Anderson that he had acute leukemia and needed to plan an early Christmas because he would be gone in two or three weeks.

My husband is such an example for all. If he is weak, tired and in pain, he still manages to go to church services three times a week.

We pray that he will be with us for this Christmas, and we thank the Lord for each day he is still with us.

Darleen, wife for 56 years, Cuero

What am I thankful for? Let me count the ways.

First off, I am thankful for having grown up in a time before cellphones, computers, etc. and in a country I could be proud of.

Today, I am not so certain what direction the good old U.S.A. is headed, but I do know we need to pray for God's blessings and help - now, not tomorrow.

Imogene, Victoria

There are so many things that I am thankful for. The first one being that God loves me and will forevermore.

I'm thankful for the life I live, the blessings God gives me - good health, good friends, good attitude and a loving family, the laughter of a small child and the face that wears a smile.

I'm thankful for the little things that make my life worthwhile. The knowledge that I am strong - I can handle what comes my way. These are some of the things I am thankful for this year and each and every day!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Doris, Westhoff

I am thankful for my family and my health. Now, we need to thank our veterans, men and women, who make this great U.S.A. free.

Was on a trip to Europe this May, and everyone said to be sure and thank the American veterans for making their country what it is today - free.

Must have been some celebrations for all the people to be freed from Auschwitz, the concentration camp. If not for our veterans, they never would have been freed.

Our veterans touch our lives every day, and we need to honor them every day, not only Veterans Day. Thank God for our brave veterans everywhere.

Alice "Granny," El Campo

I am very thankful to be here to celebrate the holiday with my husband of 58 years and my children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

You see, in September 2010, I was diagnosed with lung cancer. I was devastated. After surgery and six weeks of dreaded chemo and radiation, I am now cancer-free. I've had four siblings die because of lung cancer, so you can see why I'm so thankful.

With the Lord holding my hand all the way, my family with me all the way and my surgeon, Dr. Yahagi, I'm lucky and so thankful!

Shirley, Victoria

I am thankful for my parents (deceased). With their wisdom, love and guidance, I became the person I am today.

I'm thankful that I live in a country where I have freedom of religion and speech, that I am bilingual and can interact with more people, that I have my health and all my family - two sons and two daughters and especially my nine grandchildren, who bring me joy and pride. I have my job, my co-workers and my many friends who are always there when I need them.

With so much to be thankful for, I'm thankful that I'm me.

Amely, Victoria

"Gobble Gobble!" It's that time again. Thanksgiving has arrived - the season to break out the turkey dressing and my fave, cranberry sauce.

A tradition that I'm thankful for is the feast my family has at my grandmother's house. Usually, my sister, Cierra, and I help mother make the food. Unfortunately, this year will be different because Cierra is in Vilseck, Germany, with her husband, Steven, who is in the armed forces. Thanks to technology, she will still be participating in our tradition.

I'm very grateful for the holiday Thanksgiving.

Desirea, Tivoli

When I think of Thanksgiving, I think of the Pilgrims and Native Americans. If these people never existed, neither would Thanksgiving.

I am thankful for my family because they love me, provide a bed to sleep in and put clothes on my back.

I am thankful for technology because if we didn't have technology, we wouldn't have many of the things that our society depends on.

The final thing I am thankful for is God. Without God, none of the things we have today would have been created. All things that we have today are God-given blessings, including Thanksgiving.

Eliazar, Tivoli

I am thankful for many things but mainly for the school I attend. I go to Austwell-Tivoli Junior High School. I am thankful because there are teachers who really care. I am thankful for the basketball program we have. This school has the best faculty. The teachers make sure you have everything complete. They help you even when it's not school-related.

I am thankful that my family chose this school for me to go to. I am thankful that my family provides for me even though they may struggle to get things for me.

Nathan, Tivoli

I'm thankful for the bond I've shared with my dad through driving our old Ford Bronco named "Lucy." Since that summer when Lucy came, I've learned to drive safely, drive unsafely and learned to drive in some pretty adverse situations. The Bronco is the most fun (and muddy-est) truck ever, and I am very thankful for it. When we got it, the Bronco was pretty messed up, as my dad's friend said, but that didn't stop my dad and me from fixing it up, and in that short time, my dad and I became buddies, and for that, I'm forever thankful.

Ian, Tivoli

There are many things that I am thankful for in this world. Some of them are a home, a place to rest my head at the end of the day, food on the table, a shirt on my back and, of course, my three little brothers, though they can get on my nerves from time to time.

I am thankful for the kindness, appreciation and generosity given to me most of the time by my friends and family. Last but certainly not least, I am thankful for every gift that I receive in this world.

Nathaniel, Tivoli

What am I thankful for? Well, I'm thankful for many things, like my family, food, clothing, friends, education, health, freedom, soldiers and many other things.

I'm also thankful for the very first Thanksgiving because if we didn't have Thanksgiving, what would we do? What would happen if there was no Thanksgiving?

I know some people who have asked me, "Why is Thanksgiving called 'Thanksgiving'?" Well, it is because we give thanks for the things we are thankful for. If we did not give thanks for what we are thankful for, then it wouldn't be Thanksgiving.

I am also thankful to God.

Brian, Tivoli

There are many things to be thankful for in this world.

I am thankful for the freedom we have in the United States. I am thankful that my family has the freedom to follow our own traditions.

I am thankful for education. Without education, we would not have the knowledge to get a good job or manage a healthy lifestyle.

Finally, I am the most thankful for my family. My family is always there for me, and they support me the most.

I hope everyone's Thanksgiving is as great as mine will be.

Jasmine, Tivoli

Many people are thankful for clothing, food, health, family, and their house. However, I am thankful for guns.

Guns help many people get breakfast, lunch and dinner. They can also help you survive in the wild, and they can be for safety purposes.

Guns help the armed forces protect themselves and do their job. Many people want to ban guns, but "the right to bear arms" is the Second Amendment. You probably think if we would ban guns, all the school shootings would stop, but no. It is the people who do that. Yes, I am thankful for guns.

Tony, Tivoli

Most people would say they are thankful for family, friends, food, a house and clothes. Me, I'm thankful for all of those, but they are classic. I want to be different.

I am thankful for ammo and guns because without them, I wouldn't have any fun or be able to hunt, or I wouldn't be protected by the military or the police.

I'm also thankful for fossil fuels, deer feeders and corn. I'm thankful for these things because I wouldn't be able to drive my four-wheeler or feed my deer.

Mike, Tivoli

Thanksgiving is a special time for my family. This is one of three times a year that my family is really together.

I am most thankful for the clothes on my back and the food on the table - even if it's not there long - and more than that, the importance of our friends and family.

Thanksgiving is more than a holiday; it is the thought of being together as one. The most important part of this holiday is being thankful for all the laughs, the joy, family and friends - all to enjoy.

Britten, Tivoli

Thanksgiving is for giving thanks, but my response is not to food. I have been in school going on nine years. Within these nine years, I have had an amazing principal.

There are many reasons why I am thankful for Mr. Maldonado, principal of Austwell-Tivoli Junior High, but there is one main reason. I am thankful for this person because he has never given up on me, nor has he doubted me. Mr. Maldonado has pushed me to believe that I can do something with my life. Mr. Maldonado has played a huge part in my life, and I couldn't ask for a better principal.

Dakota, Tivoli

I am thankful to God for my family and all His creation and for this great country.

May God bless us.

Nicolas, Victoria

My family and I have so many blessings. Just having a family is the best blessing I've ever received, and Thanksgiving is the time of year we really reflect on what we're thankful for.

Family and friends will gather around a dinner table to say what we're grateful for. I will say I am thankful for a loving family and great friends, an education and a place to call home. We say a heartfelt grace before digging into the beautiful meal made with love.

"Barriga llena, corazon contento," I say, which is Spanish for "full stomach, happy heart." We all enjoy the moment of absolute happiness.

Cecilia, Tivoli

I'm thankful for technology. Honestly, my phone is my best friend - from texting, to tweeting or sharing pictures with Instagram.

I think social websites are a great way to show people who you really are and to make tons of friends. I understand safety is an issue, but making your page private and allowing only those who know you to see your posts can be lots of fun!

Other useful resources such as Google can answer questions about anything!

Without my awesome parents, I wouldn't even have my phone. I'm definitely thankful for them as well!

Morgan, Tivoli



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