“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.” -Luke 11:9-10
November always nudges me and reminds me to be thankful. Maybe it’s because we are 3 months into school and I look back wondering how that time passed so quickly. Maybe it’s because the leaves changed colors and it’s a little crisper out (actually expecting snow later this afternoon). Maybe it’s because a small vacation from work is within reach. Whatever it is, I am trying to wake up with a “gratitude attitude” this month. A few weeks ago as I was watching the Ellen Degeneres show while on the treadmill at the gym, I heard something that has been popping into my mind every morning. Ellen was interviewing Steve Harvey. He explained how he was not always in the position he is now. He also explained how being thankful is the key to his success. He wakes up every morning and for at least the first 5 minutes, he thanks God. “Thanks for waking me up today and giving me another day of life. Thanks for 7 hours of sleep last night. Thanks for coffee that will get me through my morning.” Whatever it is, he thanks God. I am trying to take part in this practice. It can be hard (especially on Monday mornings), but it really does put into perspective how blessed I am. God gives abundantly and deserves some thanks. Speaking of that, here are some of the blessings and happenings since the last time I wrote….
- Nick and I attended a San Fran 49ers vs. St. Louis Rams football games a few Mondays back. It was a late night for a Monday but still cool to see the players we watch every Sunday on TV, play right in front of us.
- Our close friends out here, Ellie and Kurt, tied the night in late October. We went to the Blumenhof winery before the wedding and then headed to Kurt’s family’s property for the wedding. It was gorgeous! The reception nearby was a blast. Congrats guys!
- Then mama Spach flew to St. Louis and we made the 5 hour drive together to St. Charles, Illinois to spend the weekend with Aaron and Jess. We did some shopping and eating and then celebrated baby Spach to be at Jess’ shower Sunday morning. Can’t wait for my niece’s arrival sometime in December/January!!
- Next it was Halloween time, Nick’s favorite! We didn’t actually dress up at all this year but we did go to Fright Fest at the nearby 6 Flags. The 4 haunted houses were freaky. Then we went to a mystery theatre dinner with Nick’s old roommate. It was so much fun and Nick was the bailiff in the show.
- In the kitchen, I’ve been trying to keep things interesting and easy. A recent go-to is this super easy chicken fajita bake. Thaw 2-3 chicken breasts and put in a 9×13 baking dish. Cover with a packet of taco seasoning and then cut up peppers and onions and layer on top. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with shredded cheese. Bake for 45 min at 350 degrees and voila!! Delicious fajita makings made easy.
- I also branched out and made lasagna soup in the crockpot. A different spin to one of my favorite dishes. This was tasty and warm for a chilly week.
I am especially grateful for all 5 senses during the upcoming holiday seasons–the sights, smells, sounds, tastes and touches of this season are special. I attended a 3 day conference this week for work about working with children with visual impairment. It was so interesting to put on visual simulator glasses and try to read braille and just think about what the world is like for those who don’t have total use of all their senses. Lots to be thankful for…7 days of work left until Thanksgiving break but who’s counting? Until then, trying to keep my gratitude attitude afloat.