fostering a grateful spirit

"If you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams, and you will always look lovely." -Roald Dahl

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young life camp at castaway {days 346-353}









I am sorry for my absence (which I, again, forgot to warn you about…oops), but I was at Young Life camp with my sweet high school friends having an amazing time and not spending time on my phone (and therefore, not updating the blog…)

A week at young life camp is chock-full of things to be grateful for, so I’ll give you some highlights.
Just some of the things I am grateful for:
getting to know a cabin of high school girls I didn’t know very well,
lots and lots and lots of laughter,
tears of joy,
sweet friends realizing how precious they are,
Jesus changing hearts and lives,
incredible sunsets,
friends being real about hard things,
beachfront & parasailing,
and being reminded of who I was created to be.

Castaway is my favorite Young Life camp and I love the way God seems to use that specific place to meet my high school friends (and me). I feel so blessed to be a part of such an amazing ministry.

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baby steps {day 266}


before I got fibro, I had become a runner (something I would have never thought possible). I wasn’t fast or great, but I ran several times a week and even finished a half marathon. when they’ll fibro symptoms started, I pretty much stopped doing anything that might make the pain worse, including running. I’ve been on one run in the past year and a half or so, and it lasted about 1 minute before the pain got terrible and I was in tears. tonight I wanted to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather, so sweet hubs and I went for a run. it wasn’t fast, but it was a run. grateful for his support, and for the feelings of accomplishing something and life getting a little closer to normal.
I am also grateful that Harlow had a good day today, and blessed and thankful for my young life girls who asked about how Harlow is doing. some of them even told me they’ve asked other people to pray for her too.
exhausted and grateful.

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enough {day 180}

this morning I was feeling very discouraged about one area if my life. I thought it was going in a direction that I was excited about, but well, it isn’t. you know that totally crappy feeling when you lose something that wasn’t actually yours yet, and you feel so frustrated and also so irritated with yourself for getting your hopes so high? not my favorite.
but then, God, with His tricky sense of humor, saw fit that I get unrelated good news in a related area of my life. He’s funny like that.
then I found out that I get to be an early reader for an author I really like, and then I get to blog about her new book! so fun!
and then I got to spend the evening with sweet young life friends. we danced

talked, sang and drank soda through someone else’s sock. yep, you read that correctly. soda. through a sock.

while at club tonight, 3-year-old Payton (who loves me occasionally but doesn’t about 80% of the time) crawled up on my lap and told me that she wants to feed giraffes this fall (something we talked about this past weekend) and then told me that sitting with me was her best part of the day and gave me a big hug. so precious.
I’m so thankful that, on the crappy days, God gives me beautiful moments to get me through. I don’t always get what I want (shocking), but He always gives me enough to get through.

complements and gratefulness {day 168}

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tonight I’m grateful for movements like this one, which encourage people (in this case high school kids) to find ways to encourage each other. I don’t know how connected you are to high school students, but I have spent hours over coffee or in one-on-ones at camp comforting crying girls (or crying with them) because of the absolutely horrific things high school kids do and say to each other. it’s like they spend 8 hours a day (at least) living in the movie Mean Girls…except it’s not funny at all. so when I see things like this, and overhear young life friends talking about compliments they posted, it fills my heart with joy and hope.

I’m also grateful today for early morning picture messages from small group girls who are already using their anthropologie initial mugs (which they got last night). so fun. also grateful for their absolute craziness, “texts” with more emoticons than words, and for my sweet friend katie who overcame a big fear in gymnastics today. 🙂 good job, lady!!


and last but not least, I’m thankful that I somehow managed to get up early this morning to make tea and lunch for the hubs, and oatmeal for myself, and for the several times hubby went out of his way to thank me and tell me he appreciated it. I feel loved.

ladies of young life {day 166}

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tonight I am grateful for the wonderful ladies that I lead alongside of in Young Life. These ladies love our high school friends, pour into them, encourage each other (and me) and try really hard to love like Jesus. I’m challenged by each of them.

grateful {day 123}

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for a successful gluten free adaptation of a gluten-y favorite. I’m also grateful for a whole month of being gluten free with no major heartbreaks (except when I realized I can’t steal the delicious leftovers out of my dad’s fridge anymore), and for the fact that it is definitely helping my poor hubby’s tummy.



for young life, laughter, Christmas spirit, and the knowledge that some of those precious friends will experience the real meaning of Christmas for the first time this year. I also stopped to watch a dancing light show on my way home that was pretty stinking amazing. I’ll try to upload a video tomorrow. 🙂