Counting Down to Thanksgiving

11.26.2014

I used to think "thanksgiving" posts were somewhat run of the mill and perfunctory, and, maybe they are if that's how you choose to look at them. However, I think taking the time to reflect, write out and actively give thanks, is like writing a love letter to God.

When I pause to take stock of my life, I just have to shake my head. My cup overflows. Each day, I have more to be thankful for than I did the day before. My husband, our dogs, our family, our health, our jobs; I have more than I could ever need and want. It is that reason I want to push myself every day, not just the fourth Thursday of November, and be purposeful in giving thanks.

Below are 14 things, in no particular order, I am super thankful for in 2014. On the surface, some of these may seem odd, and if I was asked if I was thankful about certain ones on a certain day, I may consider throwing something at you. But, without a doubt, they each serve as a reminder to me to see the blessing despite mess.
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one. A hot cup of really, really good coffee

two. Laughing until tears are streaming down my face and my belly hurts

three. Post workout aching (sometimes for days...)

four. Complaining to Andrew about his socks being left in the living room

five. Scrubbing the windows to remove the dogs "nose art"

six. The shoes that rub my toes and leave little blisters

seven. Covering my ears when Andrew decides to not regulate his volume when singing made up keys

eight. Leaves on the carpet and the repeated vacuuming it takes to get them all 

nine. Freshly laundered sheets

ten. Wrapping up in a blanket on a rainy Sunday afternoon and doing nothing

eleven. Navigating clutter in the garage and/or house

twelve. Books and music and the gift they each are

thirteen. Unloading the dishwasher to just load it again

fourteen. Being stuck in traffic on the way to/from work

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Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. It's purpose, it's traditions...the food. It's kinda hard not to love and I hope and pray each of you has a wonderful one! Enjoy the day, no matter what you're doing, who you're with, what you're eating. Choose to see the gift the day brings. 


I'd love to hear something you're thankful for this year!

Happy Thanksgiving eve!


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Five on Friday

11.21.2014

Happy Friday before Thanksgiving y'all! This week has been delightfully cold which means it feels exactly as it should this time of year. My thoughts have revolved around turkey, Christmas decorations and just the sweet joy this time of year brings with it. 

one. Taylor Swift tickets. Enough said.


two. I am not one that does the whole dress up the dogs thing, but I could not resist getting our pups these Christmas bow ties! Girls can wear bow ties, right?


three. I started volunteering in a pilot program for Big Brothers/Big Sisters, and I got to meet my awesome mentee this week! We've been exchanging emails for a little over a month, and getting to meet her in person confirmed she is one smart little girl with big dreams...as in, she wants to go to Harvard. Now, since I myself never had such ambitions, I had to pull out my Gilmore Girls knowledge and offer some of the same advice Rory recieved about the ivy leagues. And they say television isn't educational...


four. As I mentioned here, the She Reads Truth Thanksgiving devotional is amazing. My mornings have been so peaceful and purposeful, which is maybe the best way ever to start the day. 

five. I know many may think I'm crazy, but this weather just makes me so happy. I think between now and December 31 needs to be cold and somewhat overcast so you are always thinking it could possibly snow. Also, I think winter accessories may be a love language for me.




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A Coffee Date

11.18.2014

Friends, I am a firm believer one of the best things people can do is sit, talk and just be with one another. Throw in a good cup of coffee (or tea!), and it's pretty close to Heaven on Earth for me. And as much as I would love to have a coffee date with you on this frigid Tuesday morning, this will have to do for now...


If we were having coffee, I'd tell you about the She Reads Truth study, In Everything, Give Thanks, that just started and how I've been looking forward to it since I heard about it.  This time of year can get away from me (and maybe you too) if I don't make it a priority. For the past few weeks, I've started each morning with coffee and these devotionals, and I cannot begin to express what a blessing it has been

I'd also mention, no less than 17 times, how I can't believe we're into the latter half of November. Thanksgiving is next week. This is just my favorite time of year, but I always hate the accelerated pace life seems to take on between now and December 31. I would ask you if you have a way to slow it down, and in return, buy you another cup of coffee.

If we were having coffee, I'd ask you how you were. Truly. Though the season for merry and bright is right around the corner, life still happens and sometimes, life is dull and hard. I'd ask if there was anything I could do to serve you and pray for you.

If we were having coffee, chances are, I'd bring up our nephews and dogs a lot. And proceed to show you pictures you didn't ask to see...


Inevitably, Taylor Swift would get brought up. I cannot promise this would happen only once, but I would try to keep myself in check. I would make you question my sanity by telling you how close I was to losing it a few weeks ago (at work no less) when Ticketmaster thought it would be a good idea to have all the cities presales at the. same. time. It was awesome.

When our coffee date would come to an end, I would give you a big squeeze and ask for us to do this again soon!

Love you friends and I hope you have a wonderful, WARM Tuesday!
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Hello November

11.12.2014

Hello to the month that...


...started 12 days ago and is rushing by as quickly as it arrived.

...brings shorter days and colder weather.

...makes it socially acceptable to listen to Christmas music and welcomes and encourages reflective moments of thankfulness.

...makes me giddy just thinking of all the goodness it brings. 

...has me over analyzing Christmas card designs and finalizing present ideas. 

...starts the wonderful overlap of football and basketball. 

...brings back the Starbucks Red Cup!

...reminds me to embrace everything this year has brought so far and to enjoy what is to come. 

Happy November...12 days in and all!



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The One About Minnesota, Taylor Swift & Nashville

11.03.2014

Just as I suspected, the wonderful month of October came and went in the blink of an eye. It's truly not October's fault this time around time, though. Nope, this time, I only have my somewhat oppressive schedule to blame. However, despite the aforementioned schedule, I loved every minute of the past month. Well, some minutes at work I could've done without it, but such is life.

If you follow me on Instagram, then you've already been given a pretty good snapshot of how October looked for the most part.  If you don't follow me, then you've missed an abundant amount of pumpkins and coffee and the knowledge that I survived a road trip to Minnesota.

That's right. We drove from Charlotte to Hutchinson, Minnesota...by choice. Now, I will be the first to admit, when it comes to car rides, I am that obnoxious child person that starts asking "are we there yet?" at about hour three. Well, we went through seven states to get there, so that should tell you, it was slightly more than three hours.

Despite the hours and miles to get there, it was a really fun trip to and from. I advised my sweet, patient husband, that should he not want to feel the urge to leave me in the middle of some fly over state, we would have to make driving worth it.  To me, "worth it" meant Churchill Downs.


Full disclosure: tears came to my eyes when I saw this. I have always dreamed of going to the Kentucky Derby, but unless we win the lottery, not sure when that will happen, so this was an excellent alternative. It was awesome to see in person and walk the grounds where so much history has taken place.

Fast forward a couple of days later, we're in Hutchinson! It was a whirlwind visit, but it was so wonderful. The catalyst for this whole trip was Andrew's grandparents 60th wedding anniversary and what a celebration it was! I refuse to inundate this post with pictures, so as a compromise, here is one I got right before we left...


My birthday was last Wednesday, and I knew the only place I wanted to spend it was Nashville. So, we headed out of Minnesota on Monday...but not before stopping for one important item.


I'm still trying to get used to "pop" Taylor, but my need to be best friends with her hasn't changed a bit, so, keep that in mind should you meet her.

Poor (lucky?) Andrew had to listen to this CD way too many times from Minnesota to Tennessee, and I don't think the fact he had fair warning it could happen helped at all. Nevertheless, we made it to Nashville and had an awesome time. The last time we were there, I discovered The Well and I talk about it every chance I get. Amazing place with an even more amazing purpose. Go.  My pre-birthday supper was spent at Puckett's, and again, go. Such good food and an awesome atmosphere.


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I was so proud of myself the first few days of October and my blogging, but then work happened, and as the saying goes "that was all she wrote" (except, not literally in this case). While still being in shock we're in the first week of November, I am so excited for the last two months of this year.

If you made it this far, thank you for sticking with the rambling and I hope you have a wonderful Monday!

P.S. on really, really long road trips and your birthday, you can be who you want...


The one on the right says "Taylor," but I felt it was important to have my sheepish expression as a prominent aspect of this picture.


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