It's almost impossible not to give thanks when you realize that you're a living, breathing miracle,
when you realize you're surrounded by living breathing miracles.
With our family history, (you can read a bit about it here), the fact that my siblings and I love God,
love each other, love our families and are fairly normal and functioning members of society
is a testimony of God's grace!
The fact that we're able to shed a few tears as we talk about our shared experiences,
as well as to laugh until our stomachs ache, is a testimony of God's healing in our lives.
I'm giving thanks for all that He's done for us and in us,
for all that He continues to do,
and for all that He will do in the generations following us.
In 2012 I followed the prompts in Ann Voskamp's Joy Dare in counting my thanks.
In 2013 I'm going back to the way I did it in the beginning,
just noticing and recording the many extraordinary blessings in my ordinary life.
And so I continue to count my thanks
piling up gratitude day by day
in my little black journal.
(and capturing some of them via my camera or iPhone)
-having lunch with a long time friend and being able to talk just like old times
-making Mama's oatmeal cookies for our family reunion
-watching a favorite t.v. show with the Hubs
-staying up late reading a good book
-cool sundresses on muggy afternoons
-fresh mint in my ice water
-making Mama's oatmeal cake, the recipe written in her own handwriting
-help from a friend to trim some branches on our cedar tree
-all packed up and ready to go to the reunion in the morning
-safe travels for all of us to the reunion
-walking and playing on the beach with the kids
-a bonfire and s'mores
-a special breakfast made by my missionary brother and sister-in-law
-a walk on the beach alone having a good talk with Jesus,
followed by time doing my She Reads Truth devotional out on the patio in the sun
-everything from serious topics to side splitting belly laughs as our family visits with one another
-a bonfire, s'mores, a huge bowl of popcorn
-a safe trip for youngest daughter as she joined us at the reunion
-a safe trip for the Hubs as he went home to be at church on Sunday
-morning clouds that cleared to afternoon sun
-the kids getting to swim
(I had to bribe my grandson, who is much too old and too big,
to climb into this water toy for this silly photo)
-laughing until it hurts while playing a silly group game
-hugs goodbye and safe travels home
-taking our time on the drive home, stopping for lunch at Kyllo's
-a stranger telling us a way around a weekend traffic jam
-heart talks with youngest daughter as we drove home together
-A&W rootbeer freezes...my favorite!
-vacation plans made and airline tickets found for a good price
-good reports about how church went today