Giving Thanks: 15 Things from 2015

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Writing down what I'm thankful for is an important practice that I've been doing just about every day for over a year. It's so easy to pick out the negative things that happen throughout the day, but dwelling on negative things never helped anybody. So today I wanted to share 15 things that I'm thankful for in 2015 (in no particular order). 

1.  Having Our Parents Close – Spending time with family has always been important to us and we love having them nearby to give advice or borrow tools for house projects.

2. Music – Music speaks to the soul in a really powerful way and I’ve gained quite a few new favorite songs this year.

3. Our Home – After renting a duplex for the first two years of our marriage, Ryan and I are so grateful for a place we can call our own. It’s just a few steps away from our miniature dream home, and it’s been really sweet to see it come together.

4. Friendship – Man, Ryan and I feel like we’ve hit the friendship jackpot this year! Something I don’t talk about very often was how lonely the two of us felt our first year of marriage. We had each other and we had our families, but all of our friends were away at college. We felt out of place in the town where we had always felt at home! But in 2015 our church friendships have gotten even deeper and we’ve gotten to know some really amazing people in the wedding world.

5. Our Health – I don’t know off the top of my head how many sick days either of us has taken this year, but I know it hasn’t been very many. That’s something that’s so easy to take for granted.

6. God’s Plan for our Business – CGP has already surpassed all of my expectations and as we look ahead to the next year, it’s so exciting and comforting to know that He has it all planned out already.

7. Balance – I’ve said over and over this year how thankful I was that I was able to enjoy my brother’s graduation, a week in the Pacific Northwest, and our annual girls’ weekend trip all in the middle of my wedding season. It’s rare to have enough time between weddings to block off for trips.

8. Laughter – Nothing is as important to our family as laughter. Except maybe food.

9. Progress – I’m a planner and a dreamer, so I often set goals way too high to be accomplished. I had some pretty ‘pie in the sky’ goals for 2015, but I’m so grateful for the progress we’ve made in pursuit of those goals.

10. Big Experiences for CGP – WPPI, my first double header, a two day workshop and follow-up mentoring session, purchasing 2 big pieces of equipment, and shooting quite a few dream engagement sessions!

11. Blogs – I can’t even begin to list all the valuable things I’ve learned and encouragement I’ve received from amazing people all around the country who blog.

12. Seasons – Sometimes it can be stressful financially that weddings have a definite off-season, but it’s always a time of enrichment and education, focus and goals, updates and new systems, and of course booking for the next year!

13. Yoga – Taking time twice a week to strengthen my body (and counteract all the wear and tear it gets on the wedding day) has been one of the more beneficial parts of working from home.

14. Goal of Simplicity – About this time last year I started looking at all the things we had that we didn’t use and decided it was time to step back and simplify. It’s a slow process, but it’s so worth it. More on this to come in January.

15. Leaps of Faith – Many of the best things we did this year were last minute decisions to just go for it! Push the button. Book the trip. Make it happen. Hopefully there will be more of this in 2016.