Wednesday, January 17, 2024

Weekly Gratitude Journal-December 2023 Edition

We are already halfway through January 2024 and I'm just now sitting down to post the last of 2023's gratitude journal posts. God is so good and so kind and so faithful-way beyond anything we could earn or deserve. There is no way I could thank Him enough for His watchful and affectionate and steadfast care for us, our family, our extended families and our church family. The discipline of writing down at least three things that I'm thankful for each day doesn't even scratch the surface of His many, many kindnesses and blessings to me, to us.

This week some old blog posts of mine popped up on my Facebook memories. When I read some of my old writings I realized I am missing taking the time to sit down and write. I think that writing is my primary way of creative expression and my primary way of processing my thoughts as well, which is why I journal. I never intended this blog to become a place where I only post my gratitude journal entries, though it's the one thing I refuse to let go of. I want to not only be faithful to thank God privately as I write my thanksgiving down in my gratitude journal, but publicly as I repost here. I want others to see that there is always something to be thankful for. As for the other stuff I used to post, writing, photography, recipes, home decor, I still love all of those things. I'm not promising, but perhaps in 2024, I'll pop in here a bit more often, God willing. 
Since 2009 I've been counting my blessings thanks to the prompting of Ann Voskamp.
 I continue to count my thanks, 
piling up gratitude day by day in my journal.
(and capturing some of my blessings via my camera or iPhone)


-It's December!
-lunch with my sister and brother-in-law
-God realigning my mind and heart in my quiet time

-my oldest brother-today is his birthday!
-a fun day of antiquing and Christmas shopping with a friend
-a long FaceTime chat with my 6 year old grandson

-a dear young mama delivered her baby boy safely and unexpectedly at home
-a powerful word from the Lord
-lunch at our favorite Mexican restaurant

-a Christmas bouquet of foraged greens (see photo above)
-a wonderful walk while listening to a favorite podcast
-writing November's gratitude post, (finally!), while my husband watches a ball game

-God hearing and answering prayer
-my middle brother-today is his birthday!
-dinner with our school parents

-a clear word from the Lord about staying in the eye of the storm in the midst of the chaos on the earth
-God answering prayer re. our yard and the county work going on
-my six year old grandson reading his book to us on facetime
-dinner with my niece-in-law and the head of our school

-our nephew-today is his birthday!
-baking bread
-holding baby P for the first time
-having a young couple from the church over for dinner

-the descriptions of Jesus in Revelation 1
-a really good night's sleep
-a nice Friday date day together

-my nephew and niece-in-law coming to my rescue when my knife magnet and all my knives fell off the wall and behind my stove! 
-a phone chat with my two California granddaughters
-a photo of my granddaughter all dressed up for her school's winter formal
-a wonderful Cozy Christmas gathering with all of the women from our church

-texts from my oldest granddaughter
-powerful worship and word
-a Sunday afternoon nap

-the county completed a retaining curb/wall between our side yard and the side walk
-a beautiful evening walk

-a yummy bowl of chili 
-my fourteen year old granddaughter's funny voicemail greeting

-finishing all of the Christmas cards for our church family
-a beautiful, blue sky day
-a lovely walk and talk with God
-going to half price movie night together

-a cozy fire in the fireplace
-tea, good conversation and prayer 
-God speaking to my heart in a powerful way on my walk

-early morning prayer together
-baking cinnamon rolls for our school's silent auction
-our church family
--facetiming with my daughter and grandkids

-driving into, through, and up out of a huge fog bank on our way to the beach
-using the last of a gift card from friend's on our lunch
-a stunningly beautiful day for a long walk by the sea

-God's help to accomplish what I needed to get done this morning
-a wonderful meal of homemade Puerto Rican food and fellowship with a dear couple from our church
-this beautiful day

-watching my grandson sing in the kid's choir at his church via lifestream
-a fun outing to Pittock Mansion in Portland all decorated for Christmas

-family and friends Christmas cards all finished!

-God's provision and blessing
-my Christmas cactus in blooming

-Chinese food and good conversation with a couple from church

-texts with our oldest grandson
-tests and photos from our daughter who is on a cruise in Europe
-God's protection from an accident on the freeway
-a phone call from my oldest brother

-a beautiful, sunny day in Kirkland/Bellevue on our little pre-Christmas getaway

-a lovely sunset dinner at Anthony's on Lake Washington

-getting to see the Christmas boats as we ate

-a safe trip home
-receiving Christmas cards in the mail
-the county is all done in our yard!
-a winter solstice evening walk-Christmas lights glowing in the fog and the smell of wood burning fireplaces

-being with my guy
-baking Cranberry Cinnamon bread

-"Christ is Born" sung to the tune of Nessun Dorma)

-a phone call with my youngest brother
-a phone call with my oldest sister
-an amazing gift in the mail from my brother-a handmade wood bowl

-a call to my guy from his best friend

-a beautiful Christmas Eve breakfast, devotions and communion with our church family
-a Christmas Eve walk
-a lovely dinner and great visit with my sister and brother-in-law

-Thank You, God, for sending Jesus! Thank You, Jesus, that You came!
-facetiming with our oldest daughter and granddaughters
-facetiming with our middle daughter and grandkids
-cinnamon cranberry bread toasted and spread with marmalade
-prime rib, roasted potatoes and caesar salad for Christmas dinner
-picking up friends from the airport

-a gift from my guy that I love
-God's care, provision and blessing
-God answering my prayer for a friend

-a nice walk before the rain began
-tea and good conversation with my friend from California
-God speaking to my heart through our conversation

-crepes for breakfast
-our cozy home
-this quiet week between Christmas and New Year's

-a relaxing Friday date day
-new running shoes
-a refreshing evening walk

-breakfast and deep heart conversation with friends
-facetime calls form our three youngest grandkids
-a heart talk with my girl
-all of the Christmas decor is put away for another year

-such a beautiful time of worship
a convicting word from the Lord
-lunch with two dear to us couples
-a really fun New Year's Eve gathering
-God's faithful care for us through 2023

still following,