Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I love that there’s an entire day devoted to having a grateful heart. It’s one of those days that restores you and fills up your cup. Then you add food, football, and cooler temps and create a recipe of magic.
Each year my parent’s neighborhood hosts a mini turkey trot 5K so I always run that with my dad and even recruited Ryan last year! This year we’re combining Thanksgiving’s with Ryan’s family and we are so stinkin pumped. We know how cool it is to be able to do that so we’re excited. It will be the second time we’ve done this, but this time we’re bringing our mini circus with Waffle and Pancake so we’ll see how that goes ha!
Expressing daily gratitude is a game changer. It changes your attitude and helps with the whole “renewing of your mind.” As we go into Thanksgiving, I encourage you to make a list of your own!
Here’s my list:
1. God’s faithfulness – It’s been a year of totally depending on God through some challenging experiences. I struggled with believing that God would show up sometimes and He always did. Day after day. Even when I wasn’t faithful, God always was. It was a tough and beautiful lesson and I’m thankful for it.
2. My husband – I’ve watched Ryan challenge and stretch himself to grow in his faith, in our marriage, with his job, and his friends. It’s been a big year for him and I’m just incredibly proud. Getting the dogs and having him as a partner in that sealed the deal this year with my gratitude for him. We’ve been growing up together since we were 17 and watching him become this strong and loving man of God is the greatest gift in my life. I love you, boo.
3. Family – The older you get the more your family become your real people, you know? Like so much more than parents or siblings or grandparents – they’re your friends. We lost my grandmother this year and it was painful and tough, but I know she’d be proud of our family and the bond we have. I also got to take a solo trip with my sister – she’s married too and lives in DC so we don’t get to see each other very much so this trip was so special to us. I’m also super blessed by Ryan’s family. They are really tight-knit and have always welcomed me and this year was no different. We got to take a trip with his parents to Florida and it was so much fun. I know how blessed I am with the Taylor crew! I work for my dad and my mom is literally my best friend so my cup truly overflows with thankfulness for my family.
4. Community – We officially joined our church in January of this year and quickly got plugged in with serving and with a community group. We’re in a group with other “newly married” couples and have a leader couple. Y’all. This is the godly community that’s written about in the bible – the true definition of the people who are going to challenge you and love you and help you seek the Lord. These are our people. 100%. We’re so grateful for them and can easily say that our lives have changed because of them. I’m so so grateful for them. We’re also still close with people from high school and college who literally restore our souls. Hanging out with them and going through each big and little life moment with them is incredible. Seeing your friends get married and have kids is so beautiful. Keep having more, y’all!!
5. New pups – Omg Waffle and Pancake. Our bubbas. They occupy 95% of my mind these days. They finally don’t have parasites anymore so now they’re just healthy, goofy boys. They are true puppies in every sense of the word but we honestly love every second with them, even when we don’t – you feel me? They are pure joy. They’ve challenged us and brightened our lives in every way.
6. She’s Taylored – Ahh the blog! The platform that started it all. I launched my blog in February of this year and it’s been such a journey. I dreamed about doing this for years and was so thrilled to bring it to life. I’ve learned a lot about myself through this process and am so pumped to continue writing and learning. If you’re reading this, just know that your support means more to me than you could ever know and that I’m thankful for you.
7. Health – This one sounds a little goofy to me, but I have to mention it. One of my goals for this year was to challenge myself with my health – to actually drink water lol, to take care of myself regarding sleep and my diet, and to find a workout routine that will stick. This has been my healthiest year yet and I’m proud of myself for that. When I feel healthy physically, my mental health does a 180. I’ve also had a record amount of sno-cones this year so there’s that. Balance, right?
8. Our jobs – 2017 was the first year that we both loved our jobs. I was in a tough job situation for half of 2016 and that was really tough. 2017 was a game changer, though. I’m super thankful for that.
9. Mental health – Like a lot of people, I’ve really struggled with intense anxiety and panic attacks in the past. It reached it’s peak in college and resurfaced during our first year of marriage when my job situation was intense. 2017 has been totally different and I can honestly say it’s because of our community. God has placed girls in my life that genuinely care about my soul and well-being and take action when they see me hurting. Pray is powerful, y’all and I felt covered in it this year. That did more for my mental health than any workout class, book, or vacation. I think 2017 was a big year for mental health in general – people finally have voices and are encouraged to use them. I’m thankful for that.
10. My dreams – This one sounds weird, too, but let me explain. I never considered myself a dreamer until last year and now I know that everyone can be a dreamer. God gives all of us incredible dreams and even God-sized dreams that we can’t even imagine ourselves. He uses our God-given gifts and allows us to apply those to our passions – all to benefit the Kingdom. Isn’t that beautiful? Sometimes it takes years to realize what to do with the dreams and sometimes we’re in a place where we don’t have the drive, confidence, or discipline to help them come to life. What I do know is that if you’re doing your best to live within the will of God and you ask for a big dream – he’s gonna make it happen and it will surpass everything you imagined. Our God is creative, fun, and exciting and I’m thankful for that.
2017 has been challenging, restorative, eye-opening, and beautiful and it’s not even over. As I think on life and everything God has done and is doing I can’t help but be thankful. Thank you for reading my blog and supporting me. It’s honestly amazing and I’m thankful for YOU!
Enjoy your day tomorrow – whether you’re with family, working, or just trying to get through the day – let’s wake up and be thankful.
Love you guys!
– Cait –