I am enjoying the intentionality of people posting and tweeting their reasons to be thankful. Interesting if we were all this intentional all year round! Thankfulness is a wonderful space from which to reflect on one’s life. When you are thankful you’ve been paying attention to the things that are important to you. To the things that you don’t take for granted. Your perspective is [most of the time] on others and how you’ve been blessed. Perspective changes. It’s a good thing. Here’s a random description of a few of the things for which I am thankful…
- …that Rob Kelly took an interest in a silly young girl nearly 30 years ago. I had just arrived from Bolivia where I was born and where I had spent the majority of my first 16 years of life; experiencing life as a missionary kid. Wow did I have to learn a ton! Bolivian life is just a little bit different from American life. Thanks Rob, for walking alongside me in that time. Who knew that a few years after meeting each other we’d get married and that this many years later we’d still be walking together, discovering, laughing, enjoying, and so much more! You’re the man of my dreams and my heart, always!
- …that God blessed me with 3 beautiful daughters. What an incredible journey it is to be a mom to these amazing women! I have a hard time choosing a “season” that has been more fun; it’s all been wonderful. Infant stages, toddler stages, elementary, middle school, high school, college, dating, marriages…they all tumble together into a wonderful conglomeration of excitement, tears, joy, learning, loving, apologizing, reassuring, wondering, celebrating, cheering, and so much more. We’ve all definitely lived out loud in very distinct ways all our many personalities and quirks; and I wouldn’t change any of them!
- …that God continues to bless me in adding to our family – I now have 2 sons-in-love! I love these boys as my own now. I am thankful for the commitment they have made to my daughters and I continue to pray for the one yet to be determined that will be added in the future. My girls have made wise choices and these 2 boys have added to the joy I experience as a mom. They are quite mischievous (apparently if I’d raised boys I would have understood this comes with the territory) and I constantly have to be on my guard for the pranks they might pull – especially rearranging all my nativity sets in random places in the house during the holidays. No, boys, having a random shepherd figurine in the bathroom is a little odd and not where he belongs!
- …that I am Clara’s Grammie. Oh my goodness, if I just focus on this right now, you’d have to come back and read this blog in chapters. Words can’t describe what it’s like to be a grandma. This little girl has my heart for sure and I am so excited to pour into her life and the future lives of my other grandchildren (no pressure here, just looking to the future whenever this happens).
- …that I can now run up to 4 miles without stopping and actually enjoy it. I AM a runner. Here’s to as many years of running as I can make happen before my body decides to put an end to it. Every run is another one that I thank God for; in about 2 weeks I’ll have been on this health journey for 1 year, accomplishing my goal set last November of working out in some fashion at least 3 times a week for the next year. Time to renew and refresh my goal! 🙂 Seemed easier to make a November resolution rather than a New Year’s resolution. 🙂
- …that I have the blessing of my unique heritage. Growing up as a missionary kid in Bolivia. The experience was full of joy, risk, fear, fun, heartache, suspense, adventure, paradigm shifts, cultural differences, opportunities, excitement, confusion, observing, questioning, celebrating….but all blended together it’s been a huge contributor to who I am today – shaped by the many experiences, people, places and cultures I’ve been blessed to be a part of. That I can now be a part of return Mission Trips to Bolivia with my church is just icing on the cake – I get to periodically return home! 🙂
- …that I have a fun little dog that we adopted from some good friends. Sophie actually gives some of the best hugs around. She’s full of personality – very persnickety to some, but definitely loves me and daily almost hyperventilates with excitement when I walk through the door. 🙂
- …that I have been blessed with incredible friendships over the years. Old friends and new, each one enriching my life and bringing me support, wisdom, and lots of laughter.
- …that I’ve experienced tragedy. Without it I couldn’t really understand and be aware of things others have gone through to the depth of having experienced them myself. Loss, grief, heartache, sorrow – not fun to go through by any means; and yet each one brings new depth, perspective, gratitude, opportunity and a chance to be much more aware as time marches on. Aware of what I am blessed with and aware of making the most of each moment; aware of the need to be intentional as in a matter of moments everything can change. So, yes, I am thankful for the tragedy and loss I’ve had along the way.
- …the love of books. This gift was given to me by my parents. I never can remember a time where they weren’t each one reading a book. Modeling this to me and encouraging me to read has me now realizing I can’t remember a time where I haven’t been reading a book. Oh the adventures I have had through books…I’ve strategized, sailed far away seas, traveled through time, cheered for the good guys, hissed at the bad guys, cried buckets when characters have died or experienced tragedy. My sense of geography, history, and perspective have all been molded and shaped by the many books I’ve read. I have a love of historical fiction, but have been known to read non-fiction books on many occasion (despite what Rob says). I love a good book series. I love a big thick book that takes you through generations of characters. And, just for fun, I’m often reading 2 or 3 books at a time…stepping in and out of stories and plots as I go, but enjoying them all the same.
- …for coffee. Yep. Definitely thankful for the java. Someday I know some mean doctor (and already well-meaning friends) will tell me that I should forgo caffeine, but until then I remain happily caffeinated.
- …my faith. My personal relationship with God is what motivates me, sustains me, challenges me and frames everything I do in life.
- …the seasons. I live in the beautiful State of Colorado and it’s a great place to experience the gorgeous warm colors of fall; the winter that brings a powdered sugar sprinkling (sometimes blizzarding) of snow that makes everything look crisp, clean and pristine; the splendid hope of warmer days to come in the spring with the beauty of tulips and other happy colorful reminders bursting out of the ground in all their splendor; and the lazy long summer days that bring opportunities to enjoy the outdoors long into the evening with the seasonal magnificent thunder storms that roll into town in the afternoons cooling everything off and making sure everyone stays in awe of God’s power.
Not an exhaustive list by any means…but I am truly thankful for the many blessings in my life and also motivated to make this practice of thankful reflection one that doesn’t just happen in November. 🙂