Hello 32, Shall we Dance?

I had a wonderful birthday this year. Thank you so many who spoke encouraging words to me, on my facebook, my blog, called me, and around the dinner table.  

We had my birthday dinner at my parents Saturday night. And Dad and Mom asked me to share things from growing up, like lessons learned, best gift, most embarrassing moment, and advice to the others. 

Lessons Learned: Growing up as a Preacher's Kid I really thought I was like the co-pastor of whatever church my dad was at. And those of you who know me, know that's not too far of a stretch for me. I tend to take control easily of the situations I was around… youth group wasn't doing enough activities… I planned them. didn't like the visitor packets… I redesigned them… don't ask me why I cared so much? I just did. Anyway, I liked the church scene, I think I found a lot of purpose in it. Thankfully my dad was at wonderful churches and they loved me even in all my controlling self righteousness. And now, as God has me out of church leadership for the past 5 years and in dire need of the church's love and care, He's really shown me so much more of what church is really about. 

The best gift was a suitcase I think mom and dad gave me when I turned 18. It's been everywhere with me. To other nations, To NYC many times, and countless other trips. And 14 years later it's STILL in great shape. LOVE Land's End Luggage. So, all you parents of 18-25 year olds… Give them Luggage because now is the Time they get to spread their wings and see the world and expand their love for other cultures! So, it's the best gift for a young adventure seeking person. And so it was for me. 

Most Embarrassing Moment? I think looking back it was when I was drinking soda at my first Youth outing as a young 7th grader, laughed at someone and soda came shooting out my mouth and nose everywhere and on everyone! I could NOT believe that happened so I started crying and crawled underneath the table at the restaurant and stayed there (even with kids kicking me telling me to grow up) and finally one high schooler took me out and let me cry it out in the ladies room. I can't believe I just typed that out. 

Advice for my Siblings was "never talk about your family or friends to your family or friends" in other words, I can really go off about a family member ticking me off to a friend and the next week things are forgiven and back to normal with my family but my close friends might have taken offense for me and not feel love towards my family member. And Vice versa…. Family members come to bat for each other and so it only makes sense that they might not be as restorative in the friendship once it's all worked out.   The other thing was to Pursue Adoption sooner than later.  

It was a great dinner with great purposeful conversations! Love you Family!!!!!! 

Then I had lunch yesterday with my in-laws. They always have a way of making birthdays special for us kids. I love you guys and I'm blessed with how you love me.  Then they babysat for us as we went to a Dinner and a Movie.   

Saw Sherlock Holmes…. WONDERFUL Movie. But best of all I had TIME with my husband. HE really loved on me all day and served me and complimented me. It was great. It's the simple things that I am coming to Love and appreciate.   

So, Thanks everyone for loving me so well. Thanks for being in my life.  Keep it up. You display God's beauty and grace in a BIG way.   

I'm looking forward to this coming year. I think it's a year I want to live with great purpose and with big goals but yet a simple lifestyle. I want to have little expectations for everyone but great expectations for God. I want the days ahead to be ones I dance with and see the joy and beauty in the little and big things God ordains for me. 

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