Yes, I know this is probably a cliché post, but, you know, if taking time out at least once a year to reflect on what I’m thankful for is cliché, then I’m okay with that.
1. My God. I don’t deserve His love and mercy, but they are mine anyway. My blessings are too many to count – the simple fact that I can walk and talk and see and hear should be enough, but He has showered me with so much more. I am still humbled and awed by the way God showed His great love for me by all that transpired to get me to Relevant this year.
Add to that the fact that I have an incredible family, my health, all my needs are met, along with so many of my wants and it’s overwhelming.
2. My Family. I have an incredibly supportive, giving, loving husband and three beautiful, intelligent, healthy children. My extended family is incredible. I am blessed to get together with my mom, my sister and her family, my aunt, my cousin and his family every week for dinner. I’m not sure my kids realize what a blessing this is, but I do. I love that my family is so close and that we make the time and effort to see each other regularly. I’m also incredibly thankful to have a close relationship with my dad and step-mom after going through a rough patch in that relationship for a few year.
3. My health. I have lost 64 pounds since this time last year! I can’t even begin to express how thankful I am for that fact. I feel so much better. I look so much better. My mindset is so much better. I’ve still got about 30 pounds to go, but I know I’ll get there. It amazing to me how much I’m able to do that I couldn’t do last year and how far I’ve come. I can’t wait to be at my goal weight! I can’t imagine feeling better than I do now, but I know I will and I can’t wait!
4. The freedom to homeschool. Homeschooling has changed our lives. I know that I would not be as close to my children as I am if we weren’t homeschooling. I can’t imagine how disconnected our lives would be with a husband at work, a teen in high school, a tween in middle school, my “baby” in elementary school and me – what? Probably working all day.
5. My church family. After searching for a church home for so long, I am so thankful to have found a place that we all love. I mean, we love it! We look forward to going to church on Sundays. The kids want to go to the early service so that they can do small group with their friends during second service…and, if we don’t go to early service, my older two choose to go into the worship center to hear the sermon, rather than going to small group with their friends.
Our pastor is funny and the services are entertaining, but the messages are bold. The Word is preached without reservation or excuse. There is nothing watered down about the Truth at all.
It’s exciting to see everyone making friends, too. We had a dinner this past Sunday and within ten minutes of arriving, I had no idea where, exactly, my kids were because they’d all run off with their friends. Our new church is starting to feel like home and I love that.
6. My friends. Whether it’s homeschool friends, church friends, family members who are also friends, or online friends, I am so thankful for the people God has put into my life to offer me fellowship, accountability and encouragement. I don’t know what I’d do without these people who are more important to me than they probably know.
7. The Internet. No, I guess this one’s not too deep, but I love the Internet! I can learn new things, meet new people, find old friends, let my voice be heard. I’ve been blessed to be able to try out lots of great new products with my family through blog reviews. I have met some people on line who have just been a huge blessing to me through their friendship, their support, and the Light that they shine for Jesus. The Internet definitely makes my life more full.
8. Nathan. We began sponsoring Nathan through Compassion International back in March and he is such a blessing! It’s hard to believe how quickly we’ve grown to love him. We love writing him letters and we get absolutely ecstatic when we receive one from him.
9. My van. It may be old. It may burn oil. It make release a rather embarrassing puff of smoke every time it’s started, but it’s in good shape, physically, it’s paid for, and it gets us where we need to go.
10. Toilet paper. In the words of my step-brother, “C’mon, who’s not thankful for toilet paper?”
And, with that, I’m going to commence enjoying Thanksgiving with my family. I hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving week together. Enjoy each other and don’t forget to count your blessings. I’ll be back next Monday. Until then, Happy Thanksgiving, from my family to yours!
Kris Bales is a newly-retired homeschool mom and the quirky, Christ-following, painfully honest founder (and former owner) of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers. She has a pretty serious addiction to sweet tea and Words with Friends. Kris and her husband of over 30 years are parents to three amazing homeschool grads. They share their home with three dogs, two cats, a ball python, a bearded dragon, and seven birds.