30 days of thankfulness is complete. for posterity, here was the list :)

#30- i am thankful for the past month of focusing on gratitude and now i'm ready to celebrate jesus' birth!

#29- i am thankful that my girls and i apologize to each other. they know mommy isn't perfect and when i apologize to them, i'm thankful they always say 'mommy i forgive you'

#28- i'm thankful for christmas music that helps me get in the holiday mood when its a balmy 74 degrees outside

#27- i'm thankful for my in-laws. they are wonderful loving people that enjoy the heck out of my kids (and vice versa)

#26- i'm thankful for my kids' preschool. they love their teachers, i love two mornings a week to get things accomplished!

#25- i'm thankful for my family- my parents, my sister and brother and all they entail. what a blessing it has been to be a donovan.

#24- i'm thankful for fabulous pre-made thanksgiving foods that save me from slaving in the kitchen all day when only one of the 5 of us cares much for turkey.

#23- i'm thankful to be at a point physically where i look in the mirror and see a familiar person looking back at me.

#22- i'm thankful for the simplicity and intricacy of a child's mind. explaining something complicated to a child is a difficult and wonderful thing.

#21- i'm thankful i went to baylor and met the great friends that i have been so lucky to know for the past 15 years

#20- i'm thankful for austin new church. i really can't believe how lucky we are to be a part of something inspirational that is changing lives- including mine.

#19- i am thankful for cozy beds and a good night's sleep

#18- i am thankful for music and how it transports you. especially thankful right now for the holiday variety- i can't wait for a month of nostalgic christmas tunes!

#17- i am thankful for access to healthy, fresh, affordable food. our family eats such great vegetarian variety and we consider ourselves lucky.

#16- i am thankful for our amazing teachers at mother's day out preschool. seeing amazing teachers loving your kids and your kids so excited about school days is a blessing.

#15- i am thankful for parents that made my childhood so special and now dote on their grandkids

#14- i am thankful for the look of excitement on lily's face when i told her i will be helping in her class for the thanksgiving feast

#13- i am thankful that the hardest parts of being a parent serve to only make me stronger, more aware, and more compassionate. in hindsight, of course ;)

#12- i am thankful for my husband. i know i already said this earlier in the week but i am. its worth saying twice.

#11- i am thankful for late night calls from familiar voices

#10- i am thankful for neighbors that enjoy really living life together!

#9- i am thankful for my girls' cousins. i didn't get to grow up being super close to my extended family and watching their love of their cousins grow is such a joy.

#8- i am more thankful than i can say for the partnership of my amazing husband. the way he supports me, cheers me on, and loves me changes my life on a daily basis.

#7- i am thankful for the way little minds think. they make me laugh more times a day than i can count.

#6- i am thankful for nyquil. the stuffy head, i'm so freaking tired and this cough is keeping me awake medicine.

#5- i am thankful that my kids show me the best of who i am and the worst of who i am. it is humbling and inspiring all at once.

#4- i am thankful for the childcare workers at our gym. they have known my kids for 4 years and i cherish my active time knowing my littles are well looked after.

#3- i am thankful that just when i think i know what to expect, there is a bend in the road and life changes again. it keeps me on my toes and on my knees.

#2- i am thankful for moments of quiet. the less often they happen, the more precious they become.

#1- i am thankful for the cold air in my lungs waking me up during my morning run


i'm not a sports watcher. it would be a stretch to say that i have even really watched sports in the past few years. i watched bits and pieces of a few rangers games and watched some of the NBA playoffs last year. we watch next to no professional football. if asked i probably will have no idea who is playing in the super bowl and i don't care enough about commercials to watch for their sake. i often joke that if it weren't for facebook updates, i would have no idea when games are being played.

on the other hand, i love playing sports. we were pretty serious about it when i was a kid. i played pretty much any sport i was half interested in, and some i wasn't interested in at all. (my mom loves to reenact me as a 4 year old running down the soccer field feigning a stitch in my side trying to get the coach to take me out of the game). intramurals in college are still some of my favorite memories of all time.

every once in a while i start to wonder why i don't watch more sports... then i am reminded. i sat down this past weekend to watch the baylor v ou game at my parents' house. (they are definitely sports fans. my mom still checks in the paper every saturday to see if my old high school won their friday night football game).

within an hour i was anxious, screaming at the tv, convinced the bears were going to let me down like they have 4 gazillion times in the past. at one point i yelled so loud i was worried i might have woken up all 3 girls. then it hit me- this is why i don't watch sports. i can't handle it! i get WAY too invested and i am a terrible loser. so really i'm just saving myself and my family the trouble of having to deal with the insanity that would be me as a sports fan.

i will say, that was a great game and what a treat to get to see those boys so so proud of themselves after the win. i'm sure i'll get over my sports issues by the time the girls are in high school... right?


lily and i had a conversation at bedtime that went a little something like this...
i'm writing it down because i never want to forget these moments.

me: lily do you know why we celebrate christmas?
lily: because its happy!
me: what is happy?
lily: its happy birthday to jesus!
me: that's right!! its jesus' birthday! do you know why i think jesus' birthday is so important to celebrate?
lily: because it is happy?
me: it is! it is happy. do you know why jesus is so special to me?
lily: because he is good.
me: yes, he is good. he was an amazing teacher.
lily: he taught us to be nice and not lie.
me: you're right! he sure did. he was God's son. do you know why he was born?
lily: noooooo
me: because God wants to be close to you. and sometimes we do things like lie or don't share and jesus came to help us be close to God even when we aren't good.
lily: i was good today! i shared!
me: you sure did! you did a great job of sharing today. you were very nice.
lily: sharks aren't nice.
me: you're right, sharks aren't always nice.
lily: can we never go to the beach again? what if a shark eats me?
me: i will do my best to not let a shark eat you.
lily: can we pray now? let's tell jesus happy almost birthday.
me: yes. we can pray now. i love you lily. more than you'll ever know. let's pray.


what i love about this video is two-part. first, of course my sweet annie learning a new skill is always so exciting. second, the squealing high-pitched cheers of the proudest big sisters around. in case you can't tell their voices apart it goes a little like this:

lily: yay! she's standing all by herself now!
eve: yay, annie!!!
lily: oh annie!!!
eve: can she do it again daddy?!
lily: she can walk by herself mommy!


it is all fun and games until someone starts crying...

the rest of us quite enjoyed playing in the rain today :)


eve is a wild spirit. everyone that spends time with her at some point comments on how she has her own ideas about things- i like to say she has her own drummer and follows her own beat. (a very very slow beat, but that is another story alltogether).

she reminds me of.... me. i will have to ask my mom if her quirkiness is inherited from that young an age, but dad refers to me as the 'artsy fartsy' one so it comes from somewhere!

being different is something i cherish about all my kids- the things that make them unique are the things that make them who they are. it is so amazing to see each aspect of all 3 of them grow, change, and differentiate them from their peers and sisters. at the same time, as a kid being different can feel scary. at least it did to me. i definitely didn't always embrace the things that made me different.

choosing a unique voice from the pack has felt isolating to me in the past. i am sometimes afraid to say what i think or have a dissenting opinion because it does set you apart. and when you put your value in what others say or think about you, conforming is a pretty big deal. i didn't really want to be different.

lately that is changing for me. being set apart sounds... exciting. for the first time, choosing to do something different seems to be bonding me to people that really matter in my life instead of caring what 'the pack' thinks. i am anxious and excited for the upcoming year. i feel that life is changing and for once, that doesn't seem scary to me anymore. it seems invigorating.

my value isn't in what other people think and life is too short to put much stock in mass appeal :)

I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something.
And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do.
- Edward Everett Hale


our day so far:

sometimes you need a little sweetness to get through the rest of the junk...


answered prayers can be a tricky thing. kevin and i are feeling moved, called, even pushed perhaps? ha.

we are taking the steps to head on our first mission trip in 2012. i will be doing some fundraisers on the bloom blog to raise the funds for us to go (about $4400 for the two of us).

it is all at once exciting & scary. like so many things in life, we have no idea where this might take us in the future, but we are open and answering 'yes' together.


30 days of thankfulness have started. i am going to try to add something i am thankful for to my sidebar over there -----------------> once a day during november.