monday gratitude.

practicing gratitude truly turns what we have into enough. lately i have been grateful for…

twinkle lightstwinkly lights at every turn…

breakfastslow mornings with pancakes & bacon (and brooklyn nine-nine)…

christmas 2014 giftshomemade christmas-gift-making…

sk gingerbread biscottismitten kitchen’s gingerbread biscotti dunked in decadent hot chocolate

hsg 2014 encouragementpeople that know & love us, not only share life’s journey but jump right onto the path to be with us, & overwhelm us with encouragement & truth…

and for ellen. 40 seconds of hilarity ensues as dancer (the 12 days reindeer mascot) busts out some sweet moves. at 2:45 i was crying i was laughing so hard.

happy monday!


gratitude, day 5.

gratitude_xsgratitude is a miraculous, wonderful thing. it really does turn what we have into enough. sometimes – often, even – it reminds us that what we have is even more than we need. although it’s kind of a “thing” for people to list something they are grateful for each day in november, this isn’t really that. it’s sort of my mash-up of a daily writing exercise i see people do every day in october paired with practicing gratitude. it won’t be the same every day. sometimes it will be a short, quick post, and other times it will be a reflection or recipe. but most importantly, every day there will be gratitude.

today, i am grateful for…BLACKJACK!


oh my…this little guy. i distinctly remember the day i picked him up. as i got to the breeder’s backyard, the first dog i saw was the most roly-poly pug i’ve ever seen. he was fawn-colored and so big that he had to jut one of his front paws out wide like a kickstand to keep him propped up. thankfully it didn’t take long to get distracted in the rush of cuteness that was the tiny, squirrelly little puppies playing in a nearby pen. my heart instantly melted. there were a mix of black and fawn puppies, only one of them male. i remember hoping, when i learned that he was the only boy in the litter, that being the only boy among all the girls would work to our advantage & would help us avoid him getting as big as his dad. thankfully, it seems to have worked! our little rascal is solid for sure, but pretty svelte ;o)

blackjack has been with me through virtually everything for more than 11 years! you’d think he would have shaken off the puppy stage years (& years?) ago, but no way. although he’s a champion napper, he’s as playful & silly as ever, and he has recently taken to running home at the end of his highly walks with dustin. over more than 11 years, blackjack has offered limitless snuggles, barked at infinite leaves & blades of grass, been highly entertaining, driven me nuts regularly, and loved on anyone and everyone. he’s been right by my side (more likely curled up in my lap) through pretty awful things and just as loyally through the best of times. he wasted no time at all in falling in love with dustin, and the two are pretty adorable together. i don’t know what i’d do without them.

gratitude, day 1.
gratitude, day 2.
gratitude, day 3.
gratitude, day 4.

10 things: 11.2013.


  1. eli learned our names: “header,” “doshtin,” and even “BACKGACK!” (always yelled), too.
  2. we’re pretty much addicted to this kettle corn.
  3. i displayed the depth of my ridiculousness when dustin was at drill this month. thanks to pinterest & my sister-in-law, i took our oven door apart & cleaned every surface possible. it was a pain (although not as bad as i had imagined it could be), but it was finally truly clean. and that made it worth it.
  4. ohmygoodness – this boy & his pup. so sweet! you have to see the sweet pictures in this blog; i can’t even handle the cuteness overload!
  5. if this isn’t a marking moment, i don’t know what is: dustin has truly been initiated as a minnesotan after having tater tot hot dish!
  6. we have been introduced to the deliciousness of hot toddies, and we are smitten. they’re extra delicious with lemons from our lemon tree & local honey.
  7. we got to have a weekend with eli, and “backgack” came, too. it was something i’ll remember for a long, long time.
  8. i am so glad our first real holiday together since we got married was thanksgiving. it was a simple, special day, and we really did spend it focused on how much we have to be thankful for.
  9. we got our first crawford family christmas tree!
  10. i’m loving what i think i can now call, since we’ve done it two years in a row, our first true family tradition: decorating our christmas tree while watching christmas movies (national lampoon’s christmas vacation, elf, the santa clause). we watched  SO FUN! more so this year, since at the end of the night, we got to go up to bed together versus in separate houses :o)