* Michelle Thoughts

29 Things To Be Thankful For

In no particular order…

1. My husband who is just right for me, who helps me be a better person, makes me laugh, has a completely different kind of energy than I could ever imagine having myself, and who is willing and crazy enough to adventure with me
2. My parents who gave me so many opportunities (and somehow raised us in such a way that we were never compelled to “rebel!”)
3. Having known all my grandparents; living 29 full years and counting with two bright, strong, inspiring grandmothers
4. The ability to travel, from a young age, through college, and as a young adult- it has shaped who I am
5. Gonzaga University, especially the friends I met there, Amanda, Yvonne, Thirst and Search friends, for treasured memories, and the countless things I learned and experienced in college
6. An amazing group of friends in high school who accepted me for who I was, loved good clean fun, and managed to see the best in me- I couldn’t have asked for any better
7. Great teachers who impacted me- Mr. Wenz (choir director who taught us so much about life), Madame Wiltbank (the reason I loved French), Mr. Putnam (taught us Philosophy of Mind in a high school English class), Mrs. McGregor (so dedicated), Hoffmeister (for being hilarious and teaching physics at the same time), Norm Leatha (who encouraged me in entrepreneurship), and the many others…
8. In-laws who share my faith and for becoming a part of a whole new extended family
9. New Community Church in Spokane and pastor Rob Fairbanks for showing me how a church can feel like family, challenge its congregation, and serve the world in authentic ways
10. My wonderful jobs in college planning events and the supervisors who empowered me like Mary Heitkemper and Josh Armstrong; and in Residence Life after college, living in community with great student leaders
11. Somehow snagging a job at the Moreau Center that allowed me to grow, learn, work with amazing students, travel, and more- it has shaped me more than I ever thought it could
12. Getting an invitation to Peace Corps in Jamaica
13. Having house-sitting, other projects, and just enough work line up for us as we wait for Peace Corps
14. Warm weather trips to get through the winter
15. Food! Eggs, Jade’s fresh wide rice noodles with tofu, Lilikoi’s kalua big wrap, chocolate cake, funfetti cupcakes, Oreo ice cream cake, sweet potato fries, pears, papaya, Jedd’s chicken and cream sauce, ciabatta bread with triple creme cheese and Punahou mango chutney, oh the list goes on, corn with butter and Johnny’s seasoning…
16. My husband’s cooking (and dish washing)
17. The bonds we’ve made through young couple’s Lifegroups at church (and their help moving from apartment to apartment, letting us play with their babies, taking us white water rafting, picking us up from the airport, etc.)
18. Our inspiring friends at Haiti Foundation of Hope, both here and abroad
19. My “host parents” abroad: Malou, Charo and Jose, Doctora Batista (D.R.), Alexis and Xiomara (Nicaragua- the only host parents who were younger than I was!), David and Nicole (Paris)
20. My brothers’ sense of humor
21. The books I’ve learned from (see list in side bar to the right)
22. Home videos- one of my favorite things to both watch and create
23. Living in the Pacific Northwest, where city, farm, river, mountain, ocean, and desert are all close by and where there are the best summers in the world
24. Keeping life interesting ( i.e. Being in a band, learning to windsurf, etc.)
25. 29 years without cavities, major broken bones, or allergies
26. The ability to walk, jog, run (I hope it lasts into old age but you never know)
27. Getting to know a family special family from the Congo
28. Laughter
29. Knowing that: “In the end, it will all be alright. And if it’s not alright, then it’s not the end.”

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