Monday, February 28, 2011

why I write down gifts

This article by Ann Voskamp explains better than I ever could why I'm writing down daily gifts...why I'm looking for them...why I'm choosing to give thanks in all things.  It is a beautiful, beautiful article.  And her book, One Thousand Gifts, is more than worth each penny it costs.

pain, sleep, fog, food, laughter...

...these are just a few of the words that jump out at me as I look over my list of gifts from the past week or two. God faithfulness and blessings astound me--even when life feels anything but good!  He is good all the time and all the time He is good. Period.

64. freedom to vote
65. phone chat with my triple sister
66. strength to endure all the pain
67. forty-five degree temperatures!
69. soaking in hot tub/pool
71. safety driving through thick fog
74. bank statement and checkbook balance that match :)
75. sleeping in until 11:30 :P :)
77. yummy breadsticks
79. laughter with friends
82. beautiful violin performance by sister
84. french silk pie!!!
87. sibling hangout time in my bedroom
88. chocolate zucchini bread
89. beautiful snow
90. snow day at home
91. old journal entries
92. strong, snow shoveling bros (for five plus hours...oh how I admire their hard earned muscles!)
93. laughter at dinner table

In other news, I attended the Christian Life Conference in Monroe, WI with my family this past weekend.  So, so challenging and encouraging.  I'm sure a blog post with thoughts/notes from that will be written in the near future.  In the mean time, go to the website and listen to some of the messages...especially the ones by Norm Wakefield and Paul Washer.  It might just change your life.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

daily gifts...the 33-63 addition

And I've become a slacker blogger already...can't believe almost a whole week has gone by again!  Here are some more of the daily gifts I've been writing down:

33. another stick of butter hiding in the fridge at work
35. mint oreos during (ahem) that time of month
36. long phone chat with friend
37. homemade pizza
39. unexpected gift in mail (!!!)
40. crispy, stringy grilled cheese
41. burning candles while I read the Psalms
42. chocolate drizzled glazers donut (!!)
45. an evening home alone to work
48. q-tips :)
51. grace during hard, overwhelming times
52. worshiping God this morning
53. figuring out that I figured wrong and had $100 more than I thought (for once I was glad I'm bad at math! ha)
54. the movie, "Like Dandelion Dust"
55. God's grace (could write this one down daily!)
56. lil sis giving me foot massage (I heart her times a million!)
57. four alarms on my phone :P
58. a clean car
59. spring-like temps!!
60. lively Bible study discussion about  being in the world but not of it :)
61. delicious strawberries with sugar
62. clean, folded laundry
63. completed college assignments

Yes, if you happened to notice, I do love food--everything about it, in fact (except the weight on the hips).  I'm sure I will write lots more about food in the future!

And speaking of food, it's 5:00 o'clock....happy dinner everyone!!

P.S. I crossed the one hundred mark in my daily gift journey...woot! :)  And it's an earth-shattering one...yup, I tell ya, it's huge and super spiritual.

P.S.S.  I'm often sarcastic.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


The world of Wisconsin is covered in a thick fog this morning. It's beautiful actually...but a nightmare to drive through.  I prayed a lot on the way to work. :)  After I made it here safely, I got to thinking...and realized that my life is like a big fog right now.  I can see just far enough ahead to not "go off the road" (and I'm thankful for that!) but any distance farther is foggy and unclear.  But it's where God wants me to be and a place where I'm learning more what it means to live by faith daily (sometimes hourly!).  It is rather scary...just like the drive this morning. :)  When in a fog, it feels safest and is easiest to just stay in one spot instead of "driving" on into the unknown fogginess.  But I know that I won't get anywhere in life by standing still complacently.  I will keep driving on...trusting Him each "mile" of the way...He's so incredibly faithful.  And ya know, even with all the uncertainties, unknowns, and trials, life is still beautiful...just like the fog this morning!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

a few of the 61 things... :)

After reading so many bloggers' lists of "one thousand gifts", I'm so excited to share some of mine publicly...I know how fun and encouraging it is to read about the gifts God is giving to other sisters in Christ.  Here is a handful (or two!) from my list so far....

1.  hardworking dad & bros that keep our wood supply full
3. fireplace
5. the mercy maternity house (
7. fantastically fun time playing games with friends
8. hair mousse :)
10. making donuts with siblings on a lazy saturday
11. green & yellow sprinkles :)
13. big bro being home for weekend
14. warm shower
16. small group discussion w/pastor & others after worship service
17. packers winning super bowl :)
20. skype chat w/friend
21. toast on a crummy day
24. getting in bed by 10pm :)
25. 1 Corinthians 5:9-11
27. sweet letter in the mailbox from a sweet friend
28. the book "one thousand gifts" arriving in the mailbox
30. cuddlduds when it's -23 windchill
32. prayers & comments from facebook friends

to be continued.... :) God is good!!

njoying life

Well, this is my first blog post ever. :)  Not sure if this will just be a blog for me to look at or if others will follow it...either way, my goal is to have a place where I can record the good things in life...the goodness of God. (I'm sure there will be pictures, crazy posts, honest not-feeling-so-thankful posts, etc....I'm random,  spontaneous, and transparent so there's no doubt in my mind this blog will be the same!)

The beginning of this month I began recording daily "gifts"....and will keep documenting them until I have reached one thousand! (  I have a feeling I will continue way beyond a thousand though. :)  Life can get so rough and crazy...this is a small, practical way to look for and thank God for the daily miracles and gifts.  When I'm looking, I can find them even on the hardest days!  I'm already up to to sixty-one and it's been less than two weeks (two hard weeks, for the record).  I'm so excited about this journey of focusing on the positive things in life when there is so much negativity.  I don't want to just survive...I want to enjoy this brief life I've been given.  Here goes!! :)