and we thoroughly enjoyed it.
So much that I think I blogged just a few times in the past few months.
So for a little catch-up post I wanted to share some blessings from a list that I recently began.
I was inspired by Ann and her book to begin simply writing down all of the gifts that God gave me each day. From the everyday mundane, to the hard tough stuff, to the wonderfully exciting stuff. A list that begins and ends with gratitude to the One who loves to give. A list that comes from a heart full of joy- not based on circumstances, but on truth. And a list that I pray the Lord will use to keep my eyes fixed on Jesus every single day. To find my contentment in Him alone.
And it's only just begun. Here is a small peek into the gratitude list I began when I was feeling sorry for myself that summer was ending. I knew that there had been so many wonderful gifts God had given us during summer, but it wasn't until I started writing them down that I realized how each day I was failing to live in the moment. I am constantly either looking back or looking forward and I am ready stop wishing for what I don't have and start being TRULY grateful for what I do have. Like:
- God's word that is living and active
- a break from school
- summer day trips
- God's perfect timing
- bbq's with new and old friends
- weekend trip to pismo
- a family cabin to stay in at the beach
- family bike ride on the beautiful bob jones trail
- dreaming together about experiencing all the firsts with n and m
- tears of joy while watching my husband baptize our two sons- a day I'll never forget
- boys and their baseball cards
- seeing elliana's excitement as we sang happy birthday to her
- cousins who never tire of being together
- wednesdays at the water park with friends
- salad for dinner
- time to clean out closets and drawers
- coffee dates with friends and staying up waaaay past our bedtimes
- our new church feeling a little more like family
- watching children join their forever families & no longer be orphans
- boys who play restaraunt, dress-up, and build forts- all for their little sister
- a little mommy who must carry 3 babies with her- complete w/sound effects
- friday swim days at grandma's house
- friends and family who forgive me when I blow it
- elliana's sweet voice when she talks about her "sissy and brother"
- celebrating Randy's birthday together
- chatting with other adoptive moms who really "get" how much I love & miss my 2 kids
- a husband who loves me even when I go crazy
- God's amazing, scandulous grace. I deserve absolutely none of it.
- talking with God on a morning walk at the beach
- annual august beach trip
- new children being added to the family every year :)
- having to wear a sweatshirt in the middle of summer
- watching the kids build a sand city for days
- lauren and makenna who are so helpful with elliana
- bonfire & smores on the beach
- the way elliana manages to make every person she passes by smile
- the older boys on their new boogie boards
- 5 days without a computer = time to read books
- relaxing outside on the deck
- waching elliana squeal with delight to feed goats at the farm
- ollalaberry jam
- stopping to marvel at His creation
- knowing that God will be with me every moment of every day
- school stuff arriving
- poring over all the new books for the year
- homeschool tracker to keep me organized
- watching elliana get excited about her books too
- pencils that smell like peppermint
- a husband who takes the kids out for hours at a time so I can plan for school
- and brings me home a coffee frappucino :)
- receiving a scripture from the Lord to focus our homeschool on this year
- encouraging words and prayers from friends and family as we begin our 9th year of schooling
- grace for each moment
***Will you join me on this journey of giving thanks and gratitude to the Lord each and every day? It's not easy and I kind of stink at it right now, but I am asking the Lord to work in me and help me to begin with one moment at a time and to allow that to grow into a life of joy and contentment that only He can give.
It's good to be back!