My First Give Away

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My First Give Away

Hi Friends. Happy New Year.

I know it’s already the sixth and I really should have things figured out by now but that is just not the case. So here it is, six days of the new year already used up and I’m still wondering what the year will hold. I’m thinking about goals and intentions, about who I want to be and what behaviors and practices will get me there. I keep reading about other people who choose a word or phrase that will speak for them of intentionality or purpose, of present over perfect, or living simply. I’m not sure what this year should be. I mean let’s be honest, I want all those things.

So I’m thinking about it and I’m giving myself plenty of space to consider since I want to be sure to set myself up for at least a chance at success. One thing I know for sure is that I want to continue to pursue my goal of living generously.

Which brings me to my give away…

(I know you’ve been thinking, just get to it already!)

Last year I bought a custom key-chain for myself. I.love.it. In fact, I had to buy another one to share with you. But first let me tell you the story behind it…it will be even more fantabulous!

Once upon a time, a million years ago, Glenn and I lived whole other lives in Southern California. I taught school in Covina Valley and Glenn taught at Azusa Pacific University. It was a super rich time in our lives. Honestly, we weren’t much older than many of his students at the time and we made some remarkable friendships. One of Glenn’s classes was Bel Canto, a women’s choir. (We always argued over where the apostrophe goes in that phrase. Still not convinced which way is right but it’s important not to call it “a large ladies choir” which some folks made the unfortunate mistake of doing.)

Fast forward about 15-20 years (ahem) and today you’ll find a number of those sweet girls living the life of thirty-something women. They are mothers and wives, teachers and writers, business women and entrepreneurs. Some have gone into full time ministry, some live overseas, some hold down two jobs to keep body and soul together. Some have found great success while others have had hard, hard times and come back stronger. And through the magic of Facebook we’ve been able to reconnect, or at least catch up, with a lot of them.

That’s the history. One of Glenn’s student leaders, in what I think might have been his first year directing the choir, was Danice. She was the chaplain. That’s a challenging position to hold as a student but she carried it well. In the years between Bel Canto and 2014 she has married and supported her husband through schooling, they have four ADORABLE children, they’ve moved across the country and back and she writes a sweet blog about their lives. She also has an Etsy store where I bought my fantabulous key-chain.

One of their boys has cochlear implants (you can read all about him here) and last summer (yes, I’ve been sitting on this little gem for six months) this is what she posted…

Okay…Cole would LOVE to be able to hear while he’s swimming, and now it’s possible!!! Our family is brainstorming ways we can raise the money needed to make this a reality for our boy…(about $16k) The boys are doing a lemonade and cookie stand in Lake Arrowhead on his birthday (July 4th) and I knew it was time to do my part as well If anyone is interested in purchasing hand-stamped jewelry for someone you know, the link is in the comments below. All proceeds will go toward new CI’s for Cole, letting him hear all the time! Even in the water…amazing!

And I thought it was the perfect excuse to buy another fantabulous key-chain for all of you. Don’t you agree?!?

Phew. That took forever to tell but I know you’ll love the key-chain even more now that you know the sweet story behind it.

Here’s the sooo cute key-chain:

photo

And here’s what you do to make it yours: Enter a comment below and share a goal, intention, resolution, plan, whatever–one thing you want to work on in 2014. It can be phrased beautifully or just crammed on the page. That’s it!

For a second entry, if you want to go a little crazy, share this post on facebook then come back here and comment again. You can simply say, “I shared on facebook.”

You can enter until midnight on Friday. We’ll select a winner at random and post on Saturday.

And if you need to buy anything adorable just for yourself, here’s the link to Danice’s Etsy store.

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32 responses »

  1. okay – so in your third sentence you’ve already accomplished a goal (of generosity), shared a great intension, and have set a goal of unconditional love for this little guy to experience something beyond words. You are such a loving person and a great testimony to the rest of us . . . you’re on you way to achieving your goals without really having to work at it because it comes from your heart ❤

  2. I have resolved to walk closer to the priorities in my heart. I’m going to have a goal of the month that either challenges a bad habit or establishes a new one in a way that reflects what I value or what I think is important.

  3. I strive to choose joy in 2014.
    Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy and keep choosing it – Henri J. M. Nouwen

  4. My goal this year as a mom is to start putting more bible verses up around my house and have my children and I memorize them.
    My oldest just turned two and he is a little sponge yearning to learn about everything. I think it is a perfect time to have him learn little verses.

  5. I came across this this morning and thought it was quite fitting. Thanks for all you do Mrs. Nancy.

    “Since you get more joy out of giving joy to others, you should put a good deal of thought into the happiness that you are able to give.” — Eleanor Roosevelt

  6. One on my “intentions” moving forward is to be generous and graceful to myself. I know this sounds so selfish, but I am my own worst critic and I’m always looking for the worst in myself and telling myself the worst about me. Simply trying to refocus on the fact that I’m one of God’s girls and it’s okay to be imperfect, and that baby steps are progress too (I’m usually an all or nothing kind of gal). Want my attitude and focus in the right place….on Him.

    • Wendy, you have to look at stuff from Emily Ley (sp?) She’s an artist and organizing guru and the one who penned the phrase, “I will hold myself to a standard of grace, not perfection.”

  7. ‘Focus’…I have chosen ‘one’ word for my goal/intention for 2014. ‘One” simple word…keeping it simple! So far I have found that this ‘one’ word has given me new strength and clarity that has freed up my mind but set my heart on fire for want is most important!

  8. Love the keychain, your intention and goals, and your style. I’m embracing ‘simplify’ in all areas of my life – helps me make decisions about purchasing “stuff” unnecessarily, paring down the clutter, and focusing on the most important people and relationships in my life.

  9. 2014 is going to be the year I chose Mercy over everything. Not in my wheel house at all but God has put it up as a challenge for me this year !

  10. Hi nancy! Long time no see 🙂 Jana told me you guys moved! Anyways, my word for 2014 is to be intentional. Intentional with my time, finances, words, and giving with my husband and two little boys and anyone I run into 🙂

    Becca hammagren (sieberts)

  11. I love what you are doing. What a special way to share a Christian approach to participating in New Years resolutions. Mine isn’t the normal self challenge. Instead, my changes in 2014 involve my prayer request. I have been praying for a stronger connection in church. You see, my youngest child had separation disorder and would never participate in the children’s church. This meant that I had to try to listen to the pastor and deal with a bored toddler. I know this is not new to mothers but it just really challenged me. Plus my husband doesn’t care to go to church very often so I really have felt a lack of support. This last Christmas changed my church attendance for sure! I was at home and talking to my children about the story of Jesus and why we celebrate the holiday. I was deeply ashamed when my youngest son said that he did not know who Jesus was. How could this happen? How could I have let this happen? Right then I prayed and asked God to bring us home! The Sunday right before Christmas, I took my little 4 year old Judah to church and for the first time he loved it! I felt so blessed and loved by The Lord. Thank you Jesus for loving us all so much and for making my New Years resolution for me. My children and I have returned to church.

  12. I too have been pondering the new year, and now it’s already the 9th! My spiritual goal is a daily quiet time/devotion. My health goal is a daily workout (sometimes big, sometimes just a walk). My work goal is the more complicated one. The quote I’ve heard that fits best is this: Small deeds done are better than big deeds planned. So my goal is to put into action at least some small deeds everyday…some days it’s easy and some days it’s easier to take the day off and that will not help achieve my goals. Thanks for the contest and making me write this down!

  13. Pingback: Putting My Money Where My Mouth Is… | A Tale of Grace

  14. grateful. . . I’ve begun to pay more attention and to look at God’s blessings which makes me aware of just how grateful I should be for all things, good and well. . . not so good.

  15. I intend to write a good book, not literally, but to fill the 365 blank pages of my year well. And maybe I’ll write a book too.

  16. Hear and listen to the voice of God… alone, with my husband and with my children!
    Be fully present, showing love and attention to those in my midst, even interruptions, and perhaps it’s only a genuine, heart-felt smile.

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