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Family Thoughts

10 Things

Every Friday, I will be posting 10 things I’m grateful for. Join along with me by posting your blog link in the comments of your own 10 things or simply comment with what you’re thankful for.

1. With the almond milk Jeremy has been making comes almond pulp. I love having almond pulp, because it gives me an excuse to make one of my most favorite chocolate cakes ever!

2. My new blog header. Doesn’t it look fabulous?

3. Social distance chats with friends. It feels strange, awkward, and good all at the same time.

4. Quarantine haircuts.

5. Especially when they’re done by Emma G and finished off with a leaf blower.

6. Humor. Doesn’t it just feel so good to have a good laugh?

7. Zoom video chats with our South Africa crew. Because of slow internet, we’ve always refrained from using video. Either SA internet has gotten faster (unlikely) or Zoom is just great at handling video. Either way I love being able to see faces while I talk!

8. Doggies who can’t seem to get enough of the water hose. No wonder this dog sleeps so well at night.

9. Blooming outdoor plants.

10. Sunshine and vitamin D. So great for the body and the soul.

What are you thankful for?


10 Things Today

Every Friday, I will be posting 10 things I’m grateful for. Join along with me by posting your blog link in the comments of your own 10 things or simply comment with what you’re thankful for.

1. Homemade almond milk. Even better? Homemade almond milk made by my husband. SO good. He’s not really a recipe following guy, but he makes it somewhat similar to this but uses only about 4 cups of water. We like it a little creamier since we use it in coffee.

2. Mother’s Day! I think it had been 3 years since we were all together for Mother’s Day, so it was pretty special for me this year to have everyone in the same location. I had a lovely day and felt so loved by my crew!

3. Today is the last day of school! Emma Grace has done great with online learning, but I think she’s definitely feeling weary from it all and ready for a break. It will give her time to finish her online driving course, so she’s ready to get that permit when the Dept. of Public Safety opens up!

4. Feeling extra thankful for my boy and my girl this week. How do I already have a son who’s graduated high school and a daughter who’s about to start driving?!

5. Our new car! Who buys a car during a pandemic? Well, apparently we do. After being back in the states for over a year, it was time. With no where really to go, we’ve taken scenic drives almost daily. We’re all loving our new set of wheels!

6. Apparently Emma G has decided to start daily words of wisdom. Today’s? “Why read the book when you could watch the movie?”

7. Jeremy and I met 2 incredibly nice strangers on our walk today. From a 6 foot distance, we talked about why they moved to Texas from Boston and how cute our dog is. 🙂

8. Book club and life giving conversations with our friends in South Africa. I know I say it a lot, but I sure do miss doing life with those guys.

9. So much time with the hubs. We’ve always worked together, so we’re used to being around each other a lot, but this time of quarantine has meant even more time together, and I can honestly say, I just like being around him!

10. End of school traditions that equal eating banana splits. Celebration, especially in this season of life, is always warranted.

What are you thankful for?


My 10 Things Thankful List

Every Friday, I will be posting 10 things I’m grateful for. Join along with me by posting your blog link in the comments of your own 10 things or simply comment with what you’re thankful for.

1. That Emma Grace goes to a school where a principal spends 80 hours and 12 days visiting over 600 seniors to help make their senior year during a pandemic a little more memorable. Lots of links to this news story… NY Times, Today, NBC Nightly News… Plus he was one of 4 educators recognized on the Today Show winning $10000 for Emma G’s school!

2. The way the sun is bronzing my skin and lightening my hair as a result of our daily walks. Emma Grace says it makes my skin looks dirty when I get tan. I think she’s crazy.

3. For our friends in Kenya and South Africa delivering food to those in their communities affected by COVID-19. They might not be nurses and doctors, but they are on the front lines.

4. That Taco Tuesday and Cinco de Mayo fell on the same day this year. Score!

5. Evening drives with the fam to go get ice cream. Sometimes you just gotta get out of the house.

6. Topo Chico paired with a lemon or lime. These have become a presence at Friday night pizza. They are fabulous!

7. Emma Grace’s baking. My favorite so far? These peanut butter bombs. Delish.

8. The laugh I got Wednesday when Joshua had to help Jeremy fix the toilet. The gagging sounds coming from him had me belly laughing.

9. The things my kids have said lately that seem just a little bit funnier given the current situation…

Joshua: I just spent 3 hours on Google Earth.

Me: Doing what?

Joshua: I don’t know. Looking at the planet?

10. A friend sending me a video of my kids from 5 or 6 years ago. Their little voices, oh, so cute.

What are you thankful for?

Africa Thoughts

Seizing The Opportunity

The last several weeks I’ve had lots of conversation with our team in South Africa about what it looks like to do what we can, in this moment, with what we have. Because of COVID-19, South Africa has been in lockdown to stop the spread of a virus that could have catastrophic consequences in a land where many people already suffer from respiratory illness and compromised immune systems. Compliance with the government has meant that we’ve had to close all of our programs, unsure of when we will be able to open them again.

Non-profits are usually classified as organizations. Organizations are developed by people with systems and ways of doing things in an organized way. If we have to be an org, then I would much rather be an organism, something that adapts to its current environment in order to survive and reproduce. We’ve had to adjust the doing but the being of who we are is still there. Because we embrace growth and change and serving others in a way that’s relevant, it’s been easy to adapt. Instead of running a feeding program for hundreds of kids, we’ve been able to deliver food parcels to feed the whole family. Doing what we can, in this moment, with what we have has meant doing even more than we thought possible. It has challenged me to ask myself this question in all areas of my life and to seize the opportunity that is right before me.

How about you? What does it look like to be who you are, doing what you can, in this moment, with what you have?

Community Thoughts Video

A Little Encouragement

I really don’t talk politics or even post about any former or current presidents, however, these words were such an encouragement in the midst of this COVID-19 pandemic. My favorite quote…

We cannot allow physical separation to become emotional isolation.

This time of social distancing has reminded me just how powerful a hug, a handshake, and human interaction is. It feeds the soul in unexplainable ways. I’m looking forward to the day when we can interact freely again without the worry of spreading a virus. It’s not the same, but here’s a virtual hug to all of you today!