The 2011 edition of my Thankful List

Every Thanksgiving since my blog’s inception (um, a whole three years), I’ve made a list of 50 things I’m thankful for.

Fifty doesn’t really have any significance, (aside from being half of one hundred, I suppose) but I find that writing down 50 things really makes me go beyond the usual stuff I think of being thankful for.

Fifty makes me think hard.

I make a policy of not looking back at my old lists before I make my new one, but if you’d like to see previous editions, here they are:

2008 Thankful List

2009 Thankful List

2010 Thankful List

I like to look back at those after I make my new list. It’s always interesting to see which things show up year after year without me even realizing it!

Oh, and I also make a policy of not writing these in any particular order…I just write ’em as they come to mind.


I am thankful for:

1. The love that God has for me because of what Jesus did for me. I did nothing to earn it. I can do nothing to lose it. And that is the reason that I am inspired to do what Jesus tells me to do. It’s hard to NOT want to please someone who loves you unconditionally. :)

2. The book, The Gospel Primer, because it has helped me to truly understand the depth of God’s love for me, and has helped me to look at obedience to God in an entirely new light.

3. Mr. FG. My love for him is in the eleventy billions. Mmm-hmmm.

4. Our new schedule. I still don’t think this is exactly ideal, of course, but I am grateful for the change of pace.

5. Mr. FG’s promotion. I’m thrilled to pieces that he likes his new duties so much more than his old ones.

6. Our church. After much prayer and consideration, we decided God was calling us to a new church this year, and we’re grateful for the direction in which He led us.

7. The way our church family loves our kids. There are so many people there who seek to build relationships with all of our kids. That makes me really happy and I think it makes our kids’ lives richer.

8. Opportunities to serve at church. I’ve been given a lot of the music responsibilities (our pastor was doing all of that before, in addition to preaching!), and while it’s a new challenge for me, I’m glad to be able to use my gifts to help our church.

9. Mr. FG’s love for me. He doesn’t think I’m perfect, of course, but he does like me an awful lot, and it’s nice to be liked an awful lot, isn’t it?

10. The splash of color Zoe adds to our lives. She’s enthusiastic and hilarious, and our lives just would not be the same without this last baby of ours who was added to our family so unexpectedly.

11. The ability to see. I need heavy vision correction, but I can see, and that is such a gift.

12. The way photography opens my eyes to the beauty around me.

13. My cameras and lenses. Love, love, love.

14. Speaking of expensive possessions, my piano! Love, love, love that too. Best $5000 I ever spent.

15. The ability to earn money with my hobbies. My piano and cameras have all paid for themselves and then some (especially in the case of the piano).

16. Blogging. Not only is it fun, it gives me a way to serve and help people I’d never be able to reach otherwise.

17. My readers. I have an unusually high percentage of lovely readers. Mwah!

18. Opportunities to work with companies I love. How cool is it to be able to work with REI, Cook’s Illustrated, and Aldi?? Hello!

19. Joshua’s kind heart. I love the way he loves his sisters and is kind to small children. I think his kindness will come in quite handy when he gets married one day. ;)

20. Sunshine. I’ve never been too terribly fond of dark days, and I’m really thankful I don’t live in a place where it rains all the time!

21. Happy clouds. Though I don’t like rain clouds, I do love the ones that appear on sunny days….they’re something I’ve come to appreciate more as of late. Have you ever really taken the time to notice clouds? They’re so neat to look at!

22. The stage of life my kids are at. I feel like we’re in this happy middle phase…no babies or toddlers, but also no one who is too old or too cool or too busy to hang out with the rest of us.

23. The many, many, many babies in my life. Between nieces and nephews and my church family, there’s never a lack of babies! I love enjoying other people’s little ones. :)

24. Speaking of babies, I really, really like being able to sleep all night. None of my babies were particularly fabulous sleepers, so I don’t miss that part of motherhood!

25. I also like not having to get up with the kids right away in the morning. On weekends, Mr. FG and I can stay in bed for quite some time, and the kids don’t mind. Very different from how things used to be!

26. Kids who read. Joshua’s reading Lord of the Rings, Lisey’s reading Pippi Longstocking, Sonia’s reading Nate the Great and Boxcar Children, and Zoe is reading pretty much everything in sight (including Boxcar children books, which astounds me becaues she’s only 5!). I am so, so, SO grateful that they all read this well.

27. The encouragement of my mom and dad.

28. Our family reading time. Sharing stories with Mr. FG and the kids is awfully fun.

29. Freedom to homeschool. I often take this for granted, but not every country is so friendly to homeschoolers.

30. My own homeschool education. I feel like my education prepared me very well for my adult life.

31. Enough food. Never, even in the leanest early days of our marriage, have I gone without food.

32. Clean water. I’ve never been without access to clean water, and that’s more than a lot of the world’s population can say!

33. A safe home. I have always had a safe, not-falling-apart home to live in, even if it was just a small basement apartment.

34. A happy two-parent home for all of my childhood. This is a privilege that a lot people have not been given.

35. Beautiful local parks.

36. A reliable car. It needs repairs sometimes, of course, but most of the time, I can depend upon it to get me where I need to go.

37. Dark chocolate. Oh yes.

38. Guacamole. With tortilla chips.

39. Sonia’s small stature and large personality. She is a big person in a small package.

40. The ability to walk. Whenever I see someone who can’t, I’m freshly reminded not to take this for granted.

41. Sweet notes from my children.

42. Our fire pit. It’s such a handy place to roast marshmallows!

43. The ability to look on the bright side of things. This comes in handy alllll the time.

44. Lisey’s dependable nature. She can be counted on to do what she’s supposed to do, mostly without ever being reminded.

45. Good books. We’re all so enjoying the Chronicles of Narnia right now.

46. A relatively orderly government. It’s not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but compared to a fair number of countries, we Americans have it pretty good (not having a dictator is always nice).

47. The water that is so close by.

48. The day off Mr. FG has today. Yay!

49. The Christmas season that is coming. Love.

50. The fact that thinking of fifty things for my list isn’t all that hard. I am blessed.

Happy Thanksgiving!

If you wrote a thankful list, feel free to leave a link in the comments.


Today’s 365 post:Know what’s making them laugh?

Joshua’s 365 post: My new favorite book, and Happy Thanksgiving (Joshua made a thankful list too!)


  1. Linda says

    I totally agree! I am so abundantly blessed by God! I have a wonderful family, friends and a free country to live in. I could go on and on. I just wanted to take this opportunity to tell you, Kristen, that I am thankful for you! You have added so much to my daily life. God bless you and yours! Linda

  2. says

    This thankful post made my morning! In these tough times, it is so easy to find what we lack, instead of what we have. I appreciate your words of wisdom.

  3. Katie Griffin says

    Seldom do we take the time to be Thankful, always taking for granted, and always wanting more. Its the American Way, nowadays. Your lists are very inspiring, I wish more people would think this way. I hope you and your family have a Wonderful Thanksgiving!

  4. Pam K. says

    Love your list! We Americans have SO much to be thankful for, even if things in our country aren’t perfect!

    I couldn’t get your 365 to come up, not by clicking here nor going to the home page. Hope I get to see it later!

  5. says

    Oh I LOVE this list :) :) It’s really neat to read it and some of them really hit home for me, too :) :) Plus, I really like your photographs ;) :)

    I’d love to earn a living from my hobbies someday, too…Lord willing :) :) Have you ever written a post about that? I’d love to know what your experiences were like, especially in the beginning :) :)

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family :) Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :)

  6. says

    Happy Thanksgiving!! I love that you have such avid readers. As a former teacher, when I read about kids who love to read, my head immediately begins thinking of books to recommend. Has Josh ever read Where the Red Fern Grows?? Have you?? It is an awesome book about a boy and his hunting dogs. It also has a really good lesson about relying on God and God’s ultimate plan. As a fifth grade teacher, I read it to my kids every year and they (I mean all of them!) LOVED it!!! When your girls get a little older (like 5th grade or so) I would also recommend Walk Two Moons for them to read. The story has so many twists and turns, it really keeps you on your feet!! It is a great lesson for predictions, foreshadowing. and drawing conclusions!! I’m always willing to make book suggestions, so if your kids ever get stuck…let me know! I love recommending books!! :)

  7. Susanna says

    wow I need to come up with a list myself!

    what is the book The Gospel Primer you mentioned? I’m looking for something to study this coming year along with reading the Bible (once again a goal that I’ve never achieved) I looked up the title but there were a lot of links.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *