1000 Gifts. Chapter 11. The End.

This lovely book does come to an end here, CHAPTER 11… the most beautiful part, our list of gifts can continue forever.
“Crazy, I know, but until eucharisteo had me write the graces on paper, in my own handwriting, until it alerted my mind to see the graces in the details of my very own life, I hadn’t really known.  With every grace, He sings, “You are precious to me.  You are honored, and I love you” (Isaiah 43:4)…”  -Ann Voskamp




Gifts: accomplishments made sweeter surrounded by loved ones, old friend made new, craft gifts filled to the brim with love, laughing at inappropriate times, food that feeds your soul, learning through observation, new growth (talking about my eyebrows here 😉 ),  miscommunications that lead to a firmer foundation, remembering us 5- loving that we are now 10 strong, wedding anticipation, finishing something.
That’s our little Kevy… graduating college.  Since he informed all that this is what he was thinking as Kay went up to retrieve her diploma the previous evening, I thought it only fair that I send him similar vibes.
Our gift for Kev. The song that started it all.  I guess it doesn’t have much to do with college, but graduating from college seems to lend itself to digging up some nostalgic memories.
So:  It was Kev’s senior year of high school.  All of us were at a New Years party.  Kev took us aside to play us a song on his guitar.  Kurt and I looked at each other like, ‘okaaaaaaaay’.  He opened his mouth.  We were floored. Completely.  It was the single moment when we knew he’d see greatness.  For that reason, ‘Tick Tock’ is kinda special to us.  Now, hopefully he’ll always remember that.
What a spread.  Those Herigs sure know how to celebrate an accomplishment and feed a crowd… and Mitch, Lyn, Kurt and I sure know how to put food into pre-labeled and set up serving dishes.
Happy Mother’s Day. Happy Father’s Day. Happy Anniversary. Happy Birthday… the list will go on until the buyers remorse subsides from our dual sunglasses purchase.  But, ‘Woo Hoo’, do we feel cool!
Kurt and I sat down Friday night to watch our weekly ‘Bethenny’ and realized that it was the finale.  It took about .2 seconds for me to jump up to think of a way to make it special. Here’s a little tidbit about me: I LIVE FOR REALITY TV FINALES… well, not really.  But, I do get very excited about them and like to make them something of an event. This usually just means that special food and drink are involved.  Well,  I don’t know how that’s very different from every other night that i watch the shows… hmmmm.  Anyway, Jo had given me a bottle of Skinny Girl Margarita that I’d been saving up for something special: perfect!  So, we SG Margarita’d and watched.  Will we buy another bottle of SKM? The jury’s still out.  If we do, it will probably be based on our Jason-Bethenny love 😉 We had some good laughs- sad to see it end.
Shopping for our very own ‘skinny girl’.  Trying to get Mitch to endorse this semi-scandalous dress I want Lyn to wear for her San Diego Bachelorette.  Though he’s smiling, I did NOT get his OK.

One Thousand Gifts: Chapter 10

One more chapter to go, can you believe it?
1000 gifts:

Chapter 10

Mother’s Day 2011

Look what my sweet girls and my guy did… A Target run for a card and some treats with all decisions left up to the 3 year old… this explains the Hot Pink frame (that is, according to Ava, my favorite color) and the ‘Happy Mother’s Day, Sister’ card (“but don’t worry Mom, we crossed out ‘Sister’ and wrote ‘Mom'”).
The sweetness of my breakfast in bed came in waves:
Hearing my family sneak out for an early morning Einsteins trip
 whispers in the kitchen
seeing my 3 walk in the door- breakfast tray balancing between them
the miracle that nothing spilled
the movie Ava picked out for us to watch (Beauty and the Beast)
sharing food
crumbs in the bed
A lot of hugs, snuggles and a little jumping on the bed
My girls are precious and that guy is just perfect.  On Mother’s Day this year I looked at the Daddy of my children and was inspired to embrace the beautiful way he hands over the reigns.  The way he lets them just be.  The joy that comes when you are not trying, striving, controlling…seems somehow sweeter.  Yesterday morning I felt like a queen, felt confident that I could do anything. Even let go, at least a little 😉
Some of my 1000:  Flowers that heal.  A title that feels good.  Alone time.  Spontaneity that turns into 3 new hairdos on 2 people in 1 day.  A Rapunzel braid made out of yarn.  Snuggles. AB- RIPPER- X. Mom’s who teach and encourage and inspire.  A day to give thanks. I love you’s long overdue. Genuine smiles. Truth.
“I give happy thanks for the daily mess with a smile a mile wide, because this is again my chance to wholeheartedly serve God, to do full bodied eucharisteo with the hands and the heart and the lips.  I can count each task a gift, pure eucharisteo.  Grace!  This work- the thousand endless jobs- they each give the opportunity for one to become the gift, a thousand times over!  Because with every one of the thousand, endless jobs, I become the gift to God and to others because this work is the public God serving, the daily liturgy of thanks, the completing of the communion service with my service…Here I can become the blessing, a little life that multiplies joy, making the larger world a better place. God can enter me, even me, and use these hands, these feet, to be His love, a love that goes on and on forever, endless cycle of grace.” -Ann Voskamp

one thousand gifts: ch 9

“Let go of trying to do, let go of trying to control… let go of my own way, let go of my own fears.  Let God blow His wind, His trials, oxygen for joy’s fire.  Leave the hand open and be.  Be at peace. Bend the knee and be small and let God give what God chooses to give because He only gives love and whisper surprised thanks.  This is the fuel for joy’s flame.  Fullness of joy is discovered only in the emptying of will…I hadn’t known that joy meant dying.  But dying to self demands that I might gratefully and humbly receive the better, the only things that a good God gives.”  -Ann Voskamp
1000 Gifts Book Club:

Chapter 9


This is just a teaser for the beach blog coming soon…

Spoiler Alert!

This was taken on day 1. We DO get more tan.  Ava DOES abandon her beach tears.  Kurt and I DO realize that our hair looks surprisingly similar in this picture and strive to not have the same hairdo again.  Our hairdos DO NOT get better.  We DO figure out that in this picture Elle is happy.  We also learn that there is NOT a system for interpreting whether she is on the verge of a blissful squeal or growling cry in any given moment.

one thousand gifts: ch 8

gifts: the cross, celebrations, food, laughter, family, fun, live music, messy babies, traditions, dresses, dresses, dresses!

In case you weren’t aware of this, kids make messes.  If you want them to wear an outfit more than once for say a special occasion- they will absolutely DESTROY it!  Cheers to our 3 dress Easter!

Here’s where I found the cute, awesome, easy tutorial for making these chalkboard clipboards for the ‘big’ little ones.

In the middle of this bustling Easter weekend, we managed (thanks to both of our parents) to get out 2 times without our babes.  I feel the need to include here that this meant Ava watched ‘Tangled’ 2 nights in a row… I think both sets of grandparents have now seen the movie more than Kurt and I.

And because this is the title of the post…and because you all are so graciously holding me accountable in my book club commitment:

1000 gifts book club,

Chapter 8

1000 gifts: chapter 7

One Thousand Gifts Book Club:

Chapter 7

gifts: getting to tell friends about this book. through the conversation realizing how much it has truly impacted our lives and changed our perspective.

spring. new outfits.

spring. listening to Asper Kourt in the park. starbucks. standing girl.

spring. actually being in a picture. that it was taken by Ava. time with my girls. hats.

spring. smiles. baby strapped in.  getting to know our little one.  knowing 100% that if not buckled up, she would jump.
spring. pumpkin bread for 2. the sweetness that oozes out of Ava. knowing that it’s only a matter of time before she hops out of the stroller, takes off her shoes and dances the afternoon away.

1000 gifts: chapter 6

Over half way. Keep pushing through.  Take 10 today and watch-

Chapter 6


Gift #222:

We’re all at home.  My phone rings.  It’s Kurt calling from Noelle’s room asking for the camera. I imagine the adorable photo op that has presented itself…

This is what I find.  Yes, that’s Kurt IN the crib. I yelled.


1000 gifts:chapter 5

One Thousand Gifts: Book Club


Some GIFTS in this late night moment…remembering to post this blog. knowing that it is not important whether I do it tonight or tomorrow. a house still with sleep.  me-time on the fly. a clean kitchen. ‘Chocolate Mud Pie’ Blue Bell. allergy relief. a homemade bird nest. running laps around the living room for exercise-seriously. learning a valuable lesson from a baby who only knows how to nod ‘yes’.  Ava telling me she loves me as much as her whole sky. knowing which lines of ‘friends’ will get the loud laugh out of Kurt. writing these GIFTS, taking this TIME, accepting the JOY that is always possible.

night night friends.