Friday, November 16, 2012

Day 16

Sing along with me... "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas... everywhere we go."  It's true, right?  I experienced a day filled with Christmas, even though it's not Thanksgiving yet.  Let me explain.  My mom and I went on a shopping extravaganza today with my three year old son and my three year old niece.  When we walked in the mall, it was completely decorated for Christmas.  There were huge wreath chandeliers hanging from the ceiling covered with red and gold ornaments.  Stores were filled with Christmas treats ready to be shared.  Christmas has arrived.

But little did I know that on top of store decorations, Santa has arrived too!  It's true and I have a picture to prove it.  I got a text this morning that said "We put in a good word for you," followed by this picture:

You got it!  My two friends, sporting The Thankfulness Experiment t-shirts, chased down Santa to get his picture.  Who knows?  Maybe he will join the experiment! 

After a meltdown in one of the most non-kid friendly stores at the mall, we ran across Santa.  And since there was no line (when does this ever happen?!?), my mom and I decided to let the kids stop by.  When Santa asked my son if he was good, he looked Santa straight in the eye and said no.  Can you believe it?  My son was being honest because he knew he was not so good at the store we just left.  Santa walked my son through some questions to show him that he really wasn't bad (how's that for some grace in action? Without even mentioning the naughty list!).  Santa then asked my son what he wanted for Christmas.  The list was shared, surprisingly limited to three things, and off we went.

Remember how I told you that my day was filled with Christmas...  well, to wrap up the Christmas theme, my family watched The Muppet Christmas Carol tonight.  Since thankfulness is on my brain these days, one line from the movie really struck me.  Scrooge just visited with the Spirits of Christmas Past and Present, and he now faced the Future Spirit.  As Scrooge embarked on this last phase of his journey, he said "I am prepared to follow and learn with a grateful heart."   Interesting turn of events with Scrooge... the grumpy, pessimistic man from a few hours before was transforming... mostly because of the Cratchit family and their grateful hearts.  Scrooge just witnessed Bob Cratchit toasting him, of all people, before eating their meager turkey dinner.  Bob Cratchit chose to be thankful for the blessings received instead of focusing on what his family didn't have.  What a lesson we can learn from this!  Just think of how we might influence others as we overflow with thanksgiving...

Am I willing to say "I am prepared to follow and learn with a grateful heart" like Scrooge?  Are you?  This means that we have a new outlook... one that focuses on thanksgiving in spite of our circumstances.  One that recognizes blessings in the midst of trials.  Definitely something to strive for... and when we put this thankful outlook into action, it's like living out 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18:  Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.   This outlook defies reason at times, but the impact it can have is mind-boggling.  Look at Scrooge's transformation.  How exciting to be the thankful sunshine that radiates on a world that can be so dark!  We can do it... one day and one thankful thought at a time.

Today, I'm thankful for...

1.  Shopping extravaganza with my mom... and getting everything on our lists! 
2.  Chili's chips and salsa - quite possibly the best around
3.  Snuggling with my 7 year old while watching The Muppet Christmas Carol
4.  Thankful lesson coming Scrooge - who knew?
5.  Surprise Santa photo from my friends
6.  Santa showing grace to my three year old

Here's to 10,000 reasons... Only 8,081 to go...


  1. I am thankful for watching Brave with Megan.
    I am thankful for pizza.
    I am thankful for 91.5 radio station.
    I am thankful for a CD player that Maddie gave Megan.
    I am thankful for sleep.
    Amanda L.

  2. I am so thankful for-
    My healthy,beautiful,TEEN-AGE Daughter :-)
    Lazar tag
    Dairy Queen ice cream cake
    A night none of us will soon forget !
    Precious memories
    Team work
    Really good popcorn
    Fun dip
    Bouncy balls
    the flow of thankful tears
    :-) Bonnie Lawrence

  3. I am thankful:
    1. that my father in-law is okay after trip to ER.
    2. smooth production and delivery of cake order.
    3. meeting a really neat lady at Book Club.
    4. a gentle reminder to just take a compliment.
    5. chance to be creative.
    6. sleeping in this morning!
    7. snuggling with my beautiful baby girl...she's 8, but she'll always be my baby.
    8. for the memories of my Mom from my childhood. She wasn't as crazy as I thought she was.
    9. pumpkin spice coffee
    10. nutella

  4. 1. Flavored popcorn
    2. Having ideas for gifts for others
    3. My recliner (a.k.a. "bed" for the next few weeks)
    4. A husband who lovingly moves the recliner to our room without any complaint at all
    5. A healthy family
    6. Good news from the doctor for my sister's mom-in-law
    7. The movie Brave having a very "brave" message about taking responsibility and apologizing
    8. My boys getting excited about their new baby brother coming
    9. Peanut butter and apples
    10. Being able to walk at all, even if it isn't comfortable
    11. Comfy boots
    12. My parents' willingness to help out when I need it
    13. Getting the baby's room finished
    14. Cleaning products without harmful stuff in them
    15. Knowing I am loved

    Meredith B.

  5. 1. I am thankful for fresh eggs thanks Kelli
    2. I am thankful for bacon peantbutter sandwiches
    3. I am thankful for coffee and cream
    4. I am thankful for my weight loss program
    5. I am thankful God made me different

  6. (1) I am thankful for sleeping in again.
    (2) I am thankful for gum. The grandkids will do anything for gum. Even be good.
    (3) I am thankful for getting 2 people on my Christmas list finished.
    (4) I am thankful for going shopping with my daughter and grandkids.
    (5) I am thankful for 5 hours of shopping and the grandkids being good.
    (6) I am thankful for the date night with my husband.
    (7) I am thankful for trying a new restaurant and it was good.
    (8) I am thankful for getting all the funny Christmas gifts for my kids. Another finished on my list.

  7. 1. I'm thankful to spend most of this beautiful day outdoors.
    2. For a husband that can fix anything.
    3. Neighborhood friends.
    4. For turkey rueben sandwiches.
    5. The Holy Spirit.

    Debbie D.

  8. 1. For movies for all ages
    2. For Red Robin's kids cheeseburger meal
    3. For a loving family
    4. For Courtney's HUGE hugs when I gave her the coat she thought she wasn't getting
    5. For a washer and dryer


  9. Amanda L.
    I'm thankful for having coffee this morning with a friend.
    I'm thankful for sharing a friends anniversary.
    I'm thankful for bed time.
    I'm thankful for the holy spirit.
    I'm thankful for short hair.

  10. 1. For being able to serve my momma. A true blessing for me.
    2. My momma's laugh, her eyes, and her hands.
    3. For the way my momma taught me how to live.
    4. Playing games with my mom and daughters.
    5. I am thankful for the way my momma lets me know that no matter how old I get, I'm still her little girl.

  11. 1. I am thankful for technology
    2. I am thankful for pictures
    3. I am thankful for remembering a homework assignment
    4. I am thankful for having biblical thanksgiving as an MGR
    5. I am thankful to have two easy days of school before thanksgiving break

  12. 1. I am thankful for walks in the mall.

    2. I am thankful for Friday nights at home with an awesome hubby and 2 incredible kiddos!

    3. I am thankful for much needed conversation with a dear friend.

    4. I am thankful for yummy yam soup.

    5. I am thankful for sleep.

  13. 1. Espresso shots
    2. Visits from friends at work
    3. Making a summer bucket list
    4. Positivity
    5. Fun with friends in the pool on a Friday night