Today I am 27.
The age feels good on me. Like it fits. You know when you try on a terrific new pair of jeans, and they fit just perfectly over your hips and button up so comfortably and look just totally stunning on every part of you?
That's what 27 feels like.
I liked 26. I really did. Probably the happiest year of my life. It was fun and playful and involved making lots of big decisions about our future. In a way, I suppose, 26 feels like the end of the play years. 27 feels like a time to buckle down and grow up- a time to think about retirement plans and buying a house and babies. And it fits.
I feel so incredibly blessed on this birthday. I don't say that to show you how great my life has been compared to all of your sub par lives, but because the truth is I think we are all so incredibly blessed. I feel like there are blessings beyond measure, beyond counting, beyond what we will ever have the capacity to recognize.
So for my birthday I present to you, 27 things I am grateful for today.
1. My husband and his playful attitude. He makes me laugh every single day and I adore him. I'd be so lost without him.
2. My mom who has taught me about incredible strength, faith, and the power of serving others. I learn from her every day.
3. My dad who taught me to work hard, to recognize God in my life, and the simple joy of a cherry coke.
4. My seven siblings who never stop teasing me but never stop looking out for me either.
5. My body that lets me run and play and doesn't get tired.
6. Writing and the power it gives me. The ability to rest my thoughts, to understand the world through writing, to record my life.
7. My niece, Josie, who has round, chubby cheeks and asks me to paint her toenails.
8. The belief I have in a higher power and the strength and peace that that has given me in my hardest moments.
9. Ghiradelli's milk chocolate.
10. My mind that never rests, that wants to do everything at once, that has big crazy ideas like writing on a blog every day.
11. This blog and the people who read it. The people who leave thoughtful comments and send love, and even the lurkers who read but never say a peep.
12. My students and their sassy attitudes and their crappy papers and their great big hearts.
13. My voice that is so totally awful- that couldn't carry a tune if my life depended on it- but that will perfect to me when I belt a song alone in my car.
14. Running water and clean water and hot water.
15. My time in Argentina and the people I left there. Their faith, their courage, and their constant teasing me over my American accent and my bright blonde hair.
16. Books and books and more books. To travel to another world, another time by turning pages. To understand a culture, an idea, a lifestyle. To read something that is so profound and beautiful and that you swear you have thought before, just never knew how to say it.
17. In laws who love me like their own daughter and sister, who accept me into the family, who raised a fine red head for me to marry.
18. People who stop and ask you if you're okay when you're pulled off to the side of the road.
19. Friends that are as close as sisters- that will do anything for you, that you know you can count on no matter the situation, that practically share your heart.
20. Handwritten notes.
21. Cuddles and hugs and kisses and handholds and backscratches.
22. Summer and long, hot days and campfires and vacations and chocolate that melts in the car.
23. A country that lets me wear what I want, wake up when I want, work where I want, marry who I want, worship how I want.
24. My mom's home cooking.
25. The ocean and the mountains and the trees and the sunsets and the beauty of the world we live in.
26. Skinny jeans that make you feel like a million bucks.
27. The people that surround me, that love me, that make this life worth living. That put up with my crappy moods, my crazy schemes, my fits of anger. For love and charity and peace and beauty and all those things that make life so great.
For my birthday, I would like nothing more than for you to leave a comment telling me what you are grateful for today. Mounds of happy, grateful comments will make this day complete for me.