From Tracie: Blessed, Thankful, and Married For 12 Years

Friday, July 11, 2014

Blessed, Thankful, and Married For 12 Years

I have so many reasons to be thankful this week. Some of them are thankfuls in the midst of something hard, and some of them are just great things I'm excited to share.

1. This is the twelfth anniversary of the day Thomas and I got married (we loved it so much, we had two more weddings that year). Even though we sometimes forget which day to celebrate, I like to think we celebrate our marriage every day by loving each other. And I'm so thankful to have Thomas in my life forever. He is an amazing husband and father, and a blessing to me every day.

This is what 12 years of marriage looks like...

Thomas plays along when I say, "I need to take a picture for a blog post."
12th anniversary picture
Then another picture. And another picture. And another picture.
Until he says, "I'll try not to look angry in this next one..."
Angry Face
And then, when I say, "Just one more, and this time smile for real!" he does. Because he loves me, too, even when I am driving him crazy.
Thomas Loves Tracie

2. My grandma went into the hospital this week. I know that isn't really something to be thankful for, especially when said grandma is 90 years old, having extreme asthma issues, and doctors are throwing around words and tests about potential heart problems. But I am thankful, because each step of the way there has been so much love and support poured out on her (and me, and the whole family), and I know that the many prayers that were prayed contributed greatly to the good news that her heart is pretty much okay, and her breathing is much better, and she will probably get to go home at the beginning of next week.

3. I'm also thankful for group facebook messages that enabled the whole family (even those of us who live on the other side of the country) to stay in touch easily, and get updates as new information about Grandma became available. And that my mom, aunt, and cousins were able to stay with her at the hospital, so she didn't have to be there alone.

This is one of my favorite pictures of Grandma.

4. Since we are talking about my grandma, I have to show you the fun hairstyle Katarina gave me yesterday - Paper Towel Curls. It came out great, because Katarina is much better at doing hair than I am.
step by step paper towel curls
As Katarina worked on my hair, we talked about Grandma, and prayed for her, and celebrated her love of curls. Because something all her daughters, granddaughters, and great-granddaughters know is this: Grandma likes it when you curl your hair. It is pretty much a necessity.

5. Frozen Snickers Bars. Enough said.

6. Katarina had her end of the year teacher evaluation on Monday, and it went great. There is always that nagging voice in the back of my mind asking, "Are you doing enough; is she learning everything she needs; can you really do this teaching thing?" I don't know if other homeschool parents have that voice, but I definitely do. I really appreciated having someone else go over her work from the year, and shutting that voice down with her enthusiasm for Katarina's progress and the work she completed.

7. Talking about Katarina and school, I have a number for you: 112.
One hundred and twelve. That is number of books Katarina has read since last August. Not even a complete year has passed, so she still has the rest of this month to add to that number. And that list didn't even take into account books she had read previously and reread this year, so technically it could be even higher. I track my reading from January to December, and last year I only reached 101 books, so she has beaten my record. Normally I hate to lose, but this time I felt very, very happy to come in second place.

All this book reading is inspirational, as you can see in these two Rainbow Loom figures Katarina created this week. Original creations made without a tutorial. Harry Potter and Alice in Wonderland.
Rainbow Loom Harry Potter Alice In Wonderland

8. I slept in every day this week. While I don't want that to become a habit (well, I do, but it wouldn't be the best choice), it was definitely what was needed this week. I'm thankful for the win that is good self-care.

9. Silly text messages that make me laugh at exactly the right time.

10. The provision of God. This week was high on anxiety and stress, but I can look back at it and see how God had prepared a way for me to be able to focus on my grandma as needed, without feeling the pull of other things. That was a blessing.

11. This is technically not from this week, but I wanted to share it, and it is still making me smile, so I'm throwing it in as an extra. Two of Thomas' aunts, an uncle, and cousin came to visit Orlando, and we got to spend the afternoon with them. Even though Thomas and I have been married for 12 years, I had only met one of them, and that was way back when Katarina was a baby. There were a lot of those "first time meeting the family" butterflies, but they weren't needed at all. The visit was great, and I loved them all.

I took approximately 100 pictures, but this one is my favorite because I snapped it while everyone was laughing, before they had a chance to get their serious picture faces ready. It is a great representation of the afternoon, because we all did a lot of laughing.

Thomas' family
Aunt Jackie, Cousin Deborah, Katarina, Thomas, and Aunt Brenda

Plus, I snuck into a quick picture with Thomas and Katarina.
Nall Family

Even on a hard week, there was so much for which to be thankful.
What are you thankful for today?

Ten Things of Thankful

*Do you have a blog post speaking out about child abuse? We are currently accepting submissions for the July 2014 Edition of the Blog Against Child Abuse. You retain all rights to your work, as we do not republish it, instead we link to your original post with a short introduction. Old or new posts will be accepted.


  1. Happy anniversary! Those photos make it pretty clear that even after 12 years, you two still enjoy each other.
    My grandma is 89 and still lives on her own. I'm always afraid to get a bad news phone call from my dad about her. I'm glad your grandma is doing better. I'll pray for her continued improvement.
    That is a lot of books to read in one year!!!!! Good for both of you.

  2. Happy Anniversary!!!
    I love you got girl time to do hair & talk & pray for grandma... special!

  3. First off Happy, Happy Anniversary. We, too just celebrated our 8th Wedding Anniversary on Tuesday and even got to go out for dinner while Kevin's mom watched the girls and our puppy. Definitely a lot to celebrate here, too. And I am also saying some prayers for your grandma now and sending some much needed good thoughts your way, too. And still love the hair do, Katrina gave to you. You look beautiful! Happy Weekend :)

  4. Lots of good things to be thankful for.

  5. Wonderful, wonderful post. And happy anniversary, Girl!

  6. Wow! So much here to love. 12 years. 112 books. Modern technology bringing people together. The rainbow loom dolls. All of it.
    Much love and peace to you all!

  7. happy anniversary! wow 112 books! amazing! Hoping Grandma of the curls is improving every day. My mom is 86 and still living alone...we pray she stays well...will add your grandma to that!

  8. Happy anniversary 12 years is nothing to sneeze at neither s 112 books just saying

  9. happy anniversary - wonderful list, i am new here and wanted to stop by the thankfuls - congrats to your daughter reading is so important :)

  10. Awwwwh this is lovely - HAPPY ANNIVERSARY. What a wonderful number of years to celebrate. And numbers - OW! Katerina's doing so well with the reading. And the tiny-lastic-bandy-loomy-thing too!

    I'm glad your grandma's doing better, and I hope she continues to improve. Ill health is always such a worry! (reminds me...I should go and see my grandad again soon! Oops!)

    I hope whatever the background worries are, will soon melt away and leave you with far less stress to manage as you go about your day to day life. YAY for lie-ins, though :)

  11. Happy anniversary!

    Sounds like your daughter is doing great! Try to let go of homeschool mom worries and just enjoy the learning process. Easier said than done, right?

  12. Happy happy HAPPY Anniversary to you and Thomas! I love your paper towel curls and have never heard of that before - what a talented daughter. You're obviously rocking the home schooling and 112 books is AWESOME. I hope you have a great rest of the weekend!!!

  13. AW!!! Love those pics!!! And love your hubs for being such a great trooper for YOU!! I am so glad that God has provided opportunities for you to help your grandma and opened up some space for that. I'm also *Jealous* glad you got to sleep in... oh that is just WONDERFUL!! And the books? Are you KIDDING ME???

    Between you and your sweetie pie- I am STUNNED and convicted that I need to be reading MORE and so does my sweetie pie!! Just amazing.

  14. Happy Anniversary! (excellent work with the photos)… very cool with the extended family (meaning, extended in time forwards and back, of course)