Turkey Day Everybody!

It’s finally here!!! Thanksgiving…my absolute FAVORITE day of the entire year. Thanksgiving beats out other holidays for so many reasons. 

First, no gifts….not one single present. I love that…a holiday where no one has to worry about money, where people aren’t focused on what they get or what they give, but instead of the time. Time, being present in the moment, enjoying those around us. That is the focus of this day. 

Second, come on now, the food! I’m a total glutton…so this is my day. The greenbean casserole is in the oven. The pumpkin caramel cheesecake is in the refrigerator. Yes, you heard that right…PUMPKIN. CARAMEL. CHEESECAKE. Exciting, I know. And before we eat, we pray. A prayer of Thanksgiving, my favorite moment of the whole wonderful day.

So on this day, I hope you can look into your heart and find deep gratitude for all of your blessings. Be thankful…thankfulness is a true gift and it allows us to see life in a totally different and amazing way. Be thankful today and everyday.

Today and everyday, I’m most thankful for:

  • My relationship with God through Jesus
  • My husband…my unbelievable, sweet, loving, funny, amazing husband
  • My children, for all their joy and innocence. The light that they bring to this world 
  • My family. My mom. My dad. My sister, brother-in-law. My brother. My mother-in-law and father-in-law. My sister-in-law. My nieces and nephews. My aunts and uncles. My cousins. For the memories we’ve made. For the memories yet to come. For always being there. For being such an awesome and joyous part of my life.
  • For my friends. For the ways they make me a better person. For the laughs. For the tears. For the special place they hold in my heart.
  • For my career. For the way my employer has helped me to grow professionally. For the opportunities I’ve been given. For the way they help me provide for my family.
  • My education. For the way it has opened my mind. For the way I’ve grown and continue to grow. For the future it provides for me and my family.
  • My home. To have a place that is comfort. A place that I am always happy to come home to.
  • For my pets. For the way they are always happy to see me. For the way they’re never put off by sweatpants or morning breath. For their enthusiasm. For their love.
  • For so many things. Too many to name. For all of the blessings I’ve been given. For the pain that’s help me grow. For the moments that have made me stronger. For everything.

I wish you the happiest of Thanksgivings today. Eat. Talk. Nap. Eat again. Be thankful.

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This Election…What Now?

I watched the election with the rest of the world, knots in my stomach, anxiety in my heart and eventually ending in a state of pure shock. Let me say that I am not a Democrat. I am not a Republican. I am a human being, a mom, a Christian, an employee, a woman. This election season I felt at a loss and couldn’t vote for either party with confidence. I questioned many of Clinton’s actions. However my issues with Trump were greater and those issues resonated in my soul. Trump represented a lot of things to me: hate, bigotry, misogyny, exclusion…I could go on but the truth is that none of that matters anymore. 

Whether or not I approve of his character, Donald Trump will be our next president. What can be done now? What is there to say? 

What I want to say, and what I choose to say, is that I still believe in the goodness of humanity. There are people who have used this election as an excuse, as a pulpit, to hate. But those people are not the majority. They are not the greatest number of Americans. While Trump took home the electoral vote, Clinton won the majority. And yes, even many who voted for Trump did not do so based on his message of isolation, but rather on his financial policy. 

While this election may feel like a defeat for civil liberties, the truth is that the majority of America still stands behind ALL of its people of this great nation….our women, our people of color, for our LGBT communities, for religious freedom. We still believe that we began as a nation of immigrants and we appreciate that our future will also be shaped in a positive way by those same hardworking individuals looking for a fresh start in a land where anything is possible.

We will continue to teach our daughters that they are not defined by their bodies, but instead by their minds, hearts and souls. We will teach them that they deserve equal pay for equal work and that they are capable of whatever they dream. 

We will tell our neighbors that although our God is different than theirs, that we can live peacefully together and have respect for our differences. We celebrate the fact that our children no longer recognize skin color as something that sets them apart from their peers. We relish in the idea that marriage is an equal right to ALL loving couples, regardless of their sexual orientation. 

I’m not sure who these hateful people are that I hear on the news or read in my Facebook newsfeed. These people are not the Americans I know and love. My friends, my colleagues, my church family, my family, my husband, my children, my circle is made up of the Americans that will continue to move forward, spread positivity and love, and work towards a brighter tomorrow. 

If you’re part of a minority group today (I’m with you…woman speaking right here!) or your heart is hurting for what we stand to lose after this election, take faith in knowing you are not alone. Our America is still here, still real, still hopeful and still strong. Tomorrow is a new day and the future is promising. 

I have a lot of hesitation about posting my political opinion. There are so many opinions out there and it is, quite honestly, exhausting. I’m sure some will read this with disdain because my opinion is different than theirs. But in America, that’s okay. I’m proud to stand up for my belief that all people are equal, we all deserve the same rights and freedoms. I encourage you to have respect for our election process. But I also encourage you not to lose sight of your passions and hope for the future. It is never too late. It is by standing together with love that we show what we are truly made of. We don’t always win, things don’t always go our way, but we won’t be bitter. We will move on and continue to lift up our voice for the causes that matter most. Let your voice ring!