47 / 52 – It’s good to be alive!

So Thanksgiving was a little different this year 🙂  This was our first major holiday away from family and we were in a country that doesn’t really celebrate it!  We are getting ready to kick off some big things for children’s ministry here at Calvary Cork, so we had a Thanksgiving/Servant Appreciation/share what’s up ahead dinner!  We are honestly so so thankful for those serving in the children’s ministry here.  The need in our church is great and growing and there’s a lot of hard work that goes into serving and teaching kids every week!

I’ve never hosted Thanksgiving before, never had the pressure of preparing the big meal.  Normally we’d be at my parents’ house or traveling to see Branden’s family in Wyoming.  Both places are always filled with good food and great company!  Food prep meant hours in the kitchen, working alongside other women, talking and laughing and just being together.  And Branden would have me add that football would be on!  This year I cheated and had everyone bring food 🙂  I think it’s actually the best course of action with a meal that size!  Of course I made candied sweet potatoes because they’re my favorite.  I also tried my hand at homemade cranberry sauce.  If you usually buy and slice from the can – STOP!  It’s so easy to make yourself and tastes a million times better!

The house was warm and full.  There’s something about eating with people.  The idea of breaking bread.  You’re sharing something – necessary and basic, but sitting and looking at and sharing conversations with people – that basic need becomes vital.  Relationships grow over good food and conversation!  And the Irish would say, also over tea 🙂

For this week’s project 52, I decided to ask my fellas what five things they are thankful for.  Here’s what they said:


  1. Our family
  2. Our church families, both in the States and the one we’re becoming part of here in Cork
  3. For God’s grace
  4. For His provision
  5. Opportunity to serve the Lord in ministry


  1. God being alive
  2. Me being alive
  3. Mom
  4. Dad
  5. Ethan


  1. God giving us a house
  2. Family
  3. Friends
  4. Having a church
  5. Being alive

And I’m really thankful for:

  1. Jesus, that He loves me and gave everything to be with me – so humbling and incredible!
  2. This family that I get to live and grow and serve with
  3. Our families back home that would, at great cost to them, support us in this calling
  4. Friends and those who have become like family in the States, praying for and supporting what the Lord is doing here in Ireland
  5. For new relationships in the Lord, for the families and kids of Calvary Cork, to be a part of the body of Christ alive today!

I love that my kids are both thankful to be alive!  I have worried about them as a mom, moving them across the world and plunging them into a new culture, a new place and people.  I have seen them grow and there have been moments of just facing reality and learning to trust the Lord together.  But they are alive, not just in the physical sense.  They too, even at this young age, had their days, this season, appointed and purposed by the Lord.  There is no greater life than one lived in faith, following Jesus!  I’m thankful to be living that life together.

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November 19, 2016

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48 / 52 - New Seasons

December 2, 2016