I got an idea from Kelly's Korner to do an Annual Review of my life and goals in 2009. I decided it was a great way to reflect, so here we go!
FIVE THINGS I'M THANKFUL FOR IN 2009
1. I'm thankful for friends. I love hanging out with my college girlfriends. We try to do it yearly and were able to over Spring Break this year. We scrapbooked and laughed and talked about things you talk about with people you've been friends with for over ten years. It was wonderful! I couldn't find a pic of all of us, but here is Amy and Julie from that trip. (Shan, do you have one of the four of us?)
Late this summer, I began to struggle with a lot of emotional upheaval. Thank you to all of you that encouraged me. You called me, dropped by unexpectedly, brought me smiles with your thoughtful gifts, wrote notes and wouldn't let me continue the slide into being 'off the map' like I was attempting to do. Most of all, you prayed for me, over me and with me. I love and appreciate each one of you! Some of these weren't taken this year and none of them depict the people doing what I'm referencing in this post, but they're still the people I'm referring too!
Jalen, I love our walks and talks (and Kolache Factory!) You make me smile everytime we're together. Love you!
You girls mean so much to me! Thank you for listening. Thank you for never giving up on me. Melody, thank you for the late night talks. All of you prayed with me and over me. Thank you for letting me cry. Amy, thank you for telling me it's okay to not be over something quickly.
Melody, Amy, Laura and AJ: Thank you for being my sisters in Christ and my sisters during this season. Love you!
Tom, thanks for understanding when I needed some time off with no responsibility. I treasured that weekend! I appreciate you listening and not asking questions I just didn't know the answer to. I know I didn't really answer your question earlier this week about my sabbatical. I'm enjoying what the Lord is doing in my life now. Thanks for asking and not letting me just hang in the balance. Thank you also for not pushing. :) I have so much respect for you and loved serving with you!
Jules! You and Heather were absolutely wonderful that weekend! I know I shocked you both when I broke down with tears and body shakes, but you responded compassionately to my weirdness! :) Thank you for stepping into the role of WC. You have done a phenomenal job and I LOVE watching the Lord use you in this way.
Meredith, I love our friendship. You help me have a perspective I wouldn't have otherwise. You teach me each time we talk and I love that about our conversations. Love you!
2. I'm thankful for my family, both immediate and extended. I love our traditions of gathering at certain places for certain holidays. I love the games we know we're going to play and the new ones we learn. I'm thankful for their advice through life's struggles. I'm thankful we all live within driving distance of each other so we CAN see each other as often as we do.
3. I'm thankful for good health. You never know how much that means until it's taken away. I struggled with health issues for awhile earlier this year and the amount of doctors, nurses, various hospitals and all the medical lingo can quickly become overwhelming. Right now, I'm doing fine and I praise God for that. (Which brings me back to the support of my friends during that time of uncertainy, too. Mark, you answered innumerable questions and helped me laugh about the 'big ass' needle. Thanks! Julie, thanks for driving and standing up to the old mean, grumpy guy! Meredith, you were a savior when you came and spent the night in case I needed to go to the ER after the first bx. Laurie, thanks for coming to sit with me when I did need to go to the ER several days later! I really appreciate all of you!)
4. I'm thankful for a new home. Moving was a little stressful since I had just come back from being out of the country, but it all worked out well and I absolutely LOVE my new place!
My bedroom after about 15 times of moving furniture!
The built-in cabinets I painted...ahem, three different colors before settling on this one!
My clocks and bicycles collection! (How many are there, Jalen?)
And my patio garden! I love having an area with greenery! A place to grow things and work outside in the creation that God gave to us. It was fun to help it go from this:
5. I'm thankful for a church family that has fun laughing and playing together. We are constantly in each other's lives. We grow together. We sharpen each other. We teach each other. We serve together. We stretch each other. We travel together. We work together. We are family.
Liz, Laura and Becca just before the rodeo! We were on our way to Josh Turner, I think.
Darrick, Dan, me, Mark and Liz at the Detroit airport. Jill was taking the pic! We're on our way to Rome!
Liz, me and Jill in Ephesus!
This is our group just before we went to the Astros game at Girls Serve Guys in May. We had so much fun serving the Paradigm men! (They did an absolutely wonderful job at Guys Serve Girls in February, but I don't have any pics.)
Me, Melody and Mark serving together at Houston Project! (More details at www.houstonsfirst.org I'm sure there's already info for HP:2010!)
I was going to do a FIVE THINGS I WANT TO IMPROVE IN 2010 and FIVE WAYS I WANT TO GIVE AND HELP OTHERS THIS YEAR, but I think this post is long enough as it is. I will save those topics for the next day or two. :)