Category Archives: Fall

Gratitude Production 101

gratitude production 101

Here are all the links to all 7 blogs in case you missed one. Trust me you do not want to miss one. All on the same subject, all so different yet so similar.

Before November gives way to December and all that seems to go with this time of year, make sure to read these. After this week of reading these I feel better prepared to enter this busy season. I will be more intentional with my thanksgiving, more satisfied with what I have, more compassionate to those who don’t have, more focused on the real reason for the season. I will be more thankful.

Take a few minutes, ready them one right after the other, like chapters in a book. it won’t take long. Choose just one or two of the suggestions to try see if it doesn’t change the way you look at celebrating the birth of our Jesus.

Day One by Traci Castaneda : Thanksgiving Blog Venture Day 1

Day Two by Terry Porter : Thanksgiving and Gratitude

Day Three by Bev Landgren : 365 Days of Grateful

Day Four by Joe Castaneda : Be Thankful. Be Thankful. Be Thankful.

Day Five by Tom Tanner : Rooted, Built, Established and Abounding in Thanksgiving

Day Six by Danny Ray : 3 Ways to Make this Thanksgiving the Best One Ever

Day Seven by Becca Forrest : Intentional Thanksgiving

I am working on a special project for this weekend. Stay tuned!

Have a blessed tomorrow.

Best Ever!

The Day before Thanksgiving – Are you ready? Turkey thawing in the frig? Pies ready? No? Me either!!

But please take a minute in this busy evening of preparation and check out the blog by Danny Ray. Day 6 of 7 of the Thankfulness blog hop.

Today’s post comes from Danny Ray. Day 6 of 7.  Stop by his blog and look around. A very talented magician proclaiming Jesus. This is close to my heart as many of you know my dad used magic to point kids to Jesus.

3 Ways to Make this Thanksgiving the Best One Ever

Rainbow after the stormCan you picture Noah’s face when he saw the first rainbow? He just spent the last year on a boat with his family. 365+ days with his family! A year with his daughter-in-laws and his soon to be cursed son, Ham! How much Bingo, Monopoly and Scrabble can one family play? Imagine spending Thanksgiving with your entire family for a year with no place to go. Some of you know your family would not survive that year. Someone would be thrown overboard, someone would be strangled to death, and someone would get locked up with the lions.

Noah survived. He weathered the greatest storm the world has ever known.

Beautiful clouds.

Brilliant sunrises.

Breathless moments of awe.

The Creator’s paintbrush touching the sky with stunning beauty, but no rainbow.

Click here to read the rest

 Don’t miss out on the others – Find them here:

The Overboard Life – Joe Castaneda

The Musing of a Life – Bev Everett Landgren

The Real Life – Terry Porter

Danny Ray – Danny Ray

Be Extraordinary – Traci Castaneda

Making Life Beautiful – Becca Forrest

Relentless Growth – Tom Tanner

365 days of grateful

gratitude production 101

Today is my day (day 3) in this project, I am honored and excited to be part of this Gratitude Project 101. I hope as the week progresses you will stop in and check out the 6 amazing bloggers I have been teamed with.


365 days of grateful


This is the time of year we stop to reflect on what we are thankful for, we post out thankfulness for the 31 days of November. Don’t get me wrong, this is a great practice, but last year my heart was softly challenged, why only once a year?  Why do I  take only 31 days out of 365 to actively practice gratitude? These thoughts continued to nag at me for several weeks. Why would I not express my thankfulness every day, all year long? I have a blessed, beautiful life.

Instead of making resolutions for the New Year I chose this one word to focus on and put into practice for 365 days– Grateful. (See this project for more details.)

For days I prayed, planned and wondered, how would that look? How exactly would I place this word in my life in practical, tangible ways. I decided on at least 3 things I would practice every day.

Continue reading 365 days of grateful

Thankfulness interrupted


I began the month of November wanting to write every day about all that I am thankful. I wanted to give more than just a quick sentence about each thing, but for some unknown reason I have been hit by a multitude of migraines over the last few weeks. This has really wiped me out. So I did not accomplish that goal of writing about each thing, but I did take the time to reflect on all that I have to be thankful for, which is much.

I have had migraines in the past, usually one every few months at the most. In the last 3 weeks I have had about 7 of them. I have been trying to figure the reasons for the sudden rash of migraines.

Some one suggested stress, at first I dismissed this. I keep thinking if it were stress then wouldn’t I have had them when Jason was in the hospital and then when he passed? Then I got to thinking, maybe I was too numb, maybe I am just now feeling the stress of it, maybe it has taken my body this long to catch up with reality.

I tend to handle tough events in this way; I go into what I will call control mode at a time of crisis. I get my list together, if only in my head, but there is a list, and then I act. I am calm and in control. I do what needs to be done, quickly and efficiently. Then when the crisis has passed, that is when I fall apart. When it is all over, I finally feel the reality of the thing.

When my mom passed, this was my first true tragedy, well besides my divorce, but when she passed, I acted. I gathered my children and moved in with my dad so he did not have to live alone. It wasn’t until six months later that I let myself feel the loss, and I fell apart, a little. I am a bit of a control freak so I don’t let myself fall apart easily, and then not for very long, especially when my kids were young.

When my dad had his last stroke, and Monica called me to the hospital. Again, I stood strong, dealt with the decisions that needed to be made. I watch my dad leave this earth for the arms of Jesus. This time though, Tim was there, making me take care of my needs also. This was very new and foreign to me, and still I did not let myself feel the impact until it was all over, and much later. It was months again, before I felt it fully. The fact that I had no earthly parents.

When my grandma passed 2 months after Jason, same story, different verse.

When my first marriage fell apart, with great determination, I gathered my children, we made a life and home. I did not fall apart, I was strong, I never let myself feel the full impact of this. Not until this wonderful man entered my life. I began to fall in love with him, and then all the hurt and pain I had not dealt with bubbled up to the surface. “Stuff”  long forgotten, so buried and that I had fooled myself into thinking I had dealt with it. 23 years later I finally began really dealing with the “stuff”. I am amazed that Tim hung around while I was sorting out the hurt. I am so grateful he did.

Then the most horrific tragedy I have ever been faced with, Jason’s passing. Again, I gathered my list, did what needed to be done. Marched through, quickly and efficiently because this is what I do. This is who I am. And maybe just now I am feeling it. The full impact. Don’t get me wrong, I have fallen apart many times, cried until I thought I might never stop. I have had my days of fog that I thought would never lift. But maybe just now, my body is feeling the stress of it. Maybe this is the way my body is dealing with the new reality. Maybe as we come up on this season of holidays where family and friends gather, I am feeling the full impact. I am not sure anyone ever deals with the loss of a child, but maybe this is a step in the process of healing. Letting go of the stress of it, maybe my body is dealing with the stress in this manner. Maybe by putting my feelings to words will help. Who knows, time will tell.

But this I know, I am thankful for this life my Heavenly Father has chosen for me. Yes, I am even thankful for all the crisis that he has given to me, for these things have made me who I am, and have lead me to this place now. This life I love. So while I have not written in detail about my thankful list, I want to say I am thankful for a Heavenly Father that sees me, and knows my name, and has carried me through it all to this place. I am thankful for the privilege of raising two amazing children to be amazing adults. I am thankful for the godly parents God gave me. I am thankful for the amazing life partner he gave me. Tim has been my rock, my steady in the storms of the last couple years.

This continues to be the cry of my heart, God is good, all the time. I am eternally grateful to him for this life of mine.

Thankfulness continuing . . .

I am behind again, so here I go catching up, thankful again for the quiet mornings that allow for reflection.

Thirteen: This may seem a little strange, I am grateful for knitting. I can’t tell you what this simple act does for my mind and soul. There were days after Jason passed that the simpleness of knit, purl, knit, purl were what kept me sane. I am so grateful God gave me an activity that calms me and is so rewarding at the same time.

Fourteen: Technology isn’t it a wonderful thing? In this day and age we can connect to people everywhere. I can keep up with my family far away, I have made many new friends that I will probably never meet on earth. It is an amazing thing.

Fifteen: Music, I am sitting here this morning worshiping with some of the most beautiful music playing in the background. I can not imagine what this world would be like with out music.

Sixteen: I’m going to be a little silly here but I am  thankful for coffee. I love the comfort of holding the warm mug while collecting my thoughts in these quiet mornings. The feeling of the warm liquid passing through my mouth and down my throat. Oh, and the smell, yum.

Seventeen: I am thankful for the rain we are having, it means flowers in the spring. We are about to get a lot of this rain, it makes for cozy afternoons sitting next to the love of my life.

Eighteen: I am really thankful for naps, it is a wonderful feeling, curling up beside Tim in the afternoon and feeling his arm around me while a drift off. I love afternoon naps.

Thankful continued

Day twelve:

I sit here sipping my coffee, peppermint mocha, thinking about all the things I could write about today. I have so much to be thankful for, so many things race through my mind.

Today, I am grateful for mornings, quiet ones that move into do nothing days. I am grateful for mornings for this but mostly because they are a fresh start. A chance to be better than the day before. I chance to be kinder, more understanding, love more.

Mornings, they are when God’s mercies are new.

Thankful continued

Day eleven:

Today I am thankful for all the men and women who have fought for our freedoms.

We have so much freedom. Freedom to disagree with our government with out being fearful of being thrown in jail or worse. Freedom to disagree with each other about this government. Whether we agree or not with our system of government, or even with how things are being run, we are free to express our feelings.

We are free to travel unrestricted, see this beautiful country.

We are free to worship, even there we don’t all agree on how, where or when. But we are free to love our God and praise our Jesus in public, without fear.

So thank you to the men and women who have fought to give us the freedoms that we often take for granted.