Word For The Year: Appreciate

I realize we’re about 2 weeks into 2013, but when you’re living out of a suitcase and catching up on emails via airports and coffee shops, this is what happens.

 New Years Eve was spent in Santa Barbara, recovering from colds, sipping soup and watching movies. I didn’t even make it till midnight. So very adult-ish and boring, huh? We have spent 3 weeks in southern California, staying with dear friends, seeing family and spending many hours on the 101, 405, 55, 57 and 134. If you’re not from the SoCal area- those are some of our freeways names.

(side note: watch this SNL video clip, The Californians. It’s hilarious and partly true.)


I got to visit some of my old favorites; Panino, the Boathouse, Butterfly Beach and the Mission lawn. And Gerber declared his Santa Barbara favorite: Blenders. We enjoyed some In-N-Out, his FIRST time. (I know, I know… he has been in CA three times and I have never introduced him to this California deliciousness. What kind of wife am I?) We visited with churches, met up with water filter project consultants and shared meals, and coffee dates with good friends.

We have been so thankfully for lazy mornings and comfortable beds and gracious hosts who have let us make a home away from home. We have had fun meals out, great conversations with friends, time to rest and explore some of California’s best cities, and lots and lots of car time to talk about baby names. Things that most people would probably envy, and we are grateful. But we’re both ready to get back….back to our home, to walking the dog and running errands and doing work we enjoy. Back to regular exercise and hanging up clothes and really, just a sense of normalcy.

I will forever and always be a list maker. I like goals and I like to write down my goals. But I have learned I need to let my lists of goals be more like prayers, with room to grow, change and shift…probably this year more than ever. Usually every January I  choose one thing I want change or start to incorporate into my life, like flossing or only using reusable bags. But this year I’m not choosing one thing, but one word.


My word for the 2013 is appreciate.


  1. To recognize the quality, significance, or magnitude of: appreciated their freedom.
  2. To be fully aware of or sensitive to; realize: I appreciate your problems.
  3.  To be thankful or show gratitude for: I really appreciate your help.
  4. To admire greatly; value.

•   •   •

When I appreciate what I have, I complain less.

When I am thankful for those around me, I don’t compare or become critical.

When I am fully aware, I appreciate my healthy body and the growing baby inside.

When I appreciate what my husband does for me and not nag him for what he didn’t do, everyone is happier.

When I am able to admire God’s endless creativity and grace, I don’t feel the need to be judgmental or change people.

When I recognize how much of my own life is a gift, I am a better version of myself.

So, will you join me in the year ahead and remind me to appreciate?


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