7 Things I Learned In November

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At the beginning of the month, I thought November was going to be a pretty laid back month.

I seriously could not have been more wrong.

With travel almost every weekend, three weeks to pack up our entire house, and a move the day before Thanksgiving, November packed quite a punch.

But I must say, it was a WONDERFUL punch.

With goodness, busyness and abundance abounding, I was most grateful for what I learned this month.

1.  You really CAN travel almost every weekend in a month, pack up a house and a moving truck, and then move out of state before a major holiday.  But it’s gonna take A LOT out of ya.

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After almost a year of waiting {our original timetable was a year, we ended up moving one month shy of two years}, we made the multi-state move back to our beloved home in Texas.  We had approximately 3 weeks to prepare, and it was more difficult than my Polly-anna-I’ve-moved-a-gazillion-times brain first thought.  Thanks to my amazing husband, some great movers, and a few friends {helping hands were scarce this time}, we successfully moved without a hitch.  I am beyond elated that we are home and if I had pictures of the chaos of our boxes I would include them here, but I guess you’ll just have to settle for some happy ‘after’ photos after we’ve put up some Christmas decor.  More than anything, I’m just grateful for the gift of coming back home for the holidays.

 

2.  My youngest sister and I are more alike than I ever thought we’d be.

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We had a glorious weekend visiting  family in Arizona at the beginning of the month.  There were so many wonderful moments from this weekend, it feels wrong singling out just one, and that’s not my intention here.  But I have to say, I learned more fully this trip how much my youngest sister and I are alike.  Growing up, we were absolutely as different as could be; we weren’t raised in the same house or near one another and quite a few years in age difference surely didn’t help.     While we are still different people with varied personalities, I see so many similarities in her that surprise me and make me smile.  We each sleep in one of our Dad’s old sweatshirts when we miss him, we both have a borderline-crazy obsession with our puppy dogs, we both have a passion for animals and feel strongly about righting injustice; we both revere and treasure family bonds deeper than most {along with my other siblings of course}– we’ve even handled similar health issues {nothing major}.

I love every member of my family for a million different reasons, but I was thrilled to celebrate and savor my time with my youngest sis – love you Megs!

 

3. I have literally NEVER eaten a brussel sprout.  UNTIL.TODAY.  All I can say is….WHAT WAS I THINKING?!?

 

When I was a little girl, my Mom called me a rabbit because I loved salad and vegetables so much more than the average kid.  Other than celery {which, in my humble opinion, tastes like it was made by the devil}, I pretty much love every other veggie.  Oddly, I realized recently that I grew up thinking brussel sprouts were actually bean or alfalfa sprouts.  Today, I literally ate my first brussel sprout…and it was DELICIOUS!  Of course, it was also roasted and marinated with spices like curry and turmeric and tossed with olive oil and a touch of honey – how could it NOT have been scrumptious?  I am excited to roast some with balsamic vinegar, as well as try this recipe soon.

 

4. The Internet has provided me a unique and beautiful community this past year for which I am forever grateful.

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This past year was a challenge for me, in terms of having genuine community and friendship where I lived.  Being an ambivert {a unique blend of extrovert & introvert}, I both crave solitude, and thrive on interaction and communication with friends and loved ones.  In a city where I found that a challenge, the blogisphere, and the incredible community within the online world blessed me in unexpected and wonderful ways.  I connected with and met in real life one of the kindest and most lovely kindred spirits I’ve met online – my new friend Katie.  We were roomies at the Allume conference, and she and her husband graciously hosted me at their home for a weekend in November to attend Emily Freeman’s Day at the Barn event.  I feel like a few short words in this paragraph can’t come close to expressing how I feel about such an unexpected gift of friendship.  This month reminded me and reiterated to my spirit how important this community has become in my life, and the gift it has been the past two years.

 

5. Emily Freeman’s ‘Day At the Barn’ event was the second time in two months that God has given me the same important message.  {Yes, I can be a little slow on the uptake.}

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Emily Freeman, one of my favorite bloggers, and her beautiful family {among them, her sister, know as The Nester, and her Dad, Gary Morland} hosted A Day At the Barn event the weekend before Thanksgiving, and it was sweet and beautiful and profound and important and altogether lovely.  Emily introduced her husband John, who spoke words of warmth and wisdom that I very much took to heart.  Reeve, an online friend and one of my favorite musician bloggers, sang the words of her new album and filled the air with beauty.  During a time of conversation and questions with the entire group, I asked a question that has been burning in my heart for quite some time: how to get specific with abstract dreams that won’t go away.  Emily’s Dad’s–who was fielding questions with his  kind, and surprisingly intense way–spoke words that resonated deep within my soul.

“Maybe Sarah, you’re not supposed to know the answer right now.  Maybe you’re still in process.”

I felt a deep knowing in my soul and spirit after that sentence was uttered.  A knowing that reminded me how God speaks to me over and over through various people, when he knows I’m just not getting the message.

I’ll be sharing more about this event and my dreams and vision on the blog later — for now,

I’m still in process.

6. I’m thrilled and grateful to be a part of the launch team for Lisa Harper’s new Bible study on Hebrews.

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Hebrews: The Nearness of King Jesus (Trailer) from LifeWay Women on Vimeo.

I am happy and grateful to be a part of the launch team for Lisa Harper‘s new Bible study on Hebrews – releasing in January.  {I even had ‘a small world moment in the big ole internet’ when I discovered my friend Katie’s brother is overseeing the launch team!  Which, by the way, we discovered after I had already joined the group!}   I first heard Lisa speak in 2004 when I was living in NYC – to this day, she is one of my favorite Christian speakers.  I have a feeling if we lived in the same zip code, we’d be great friends.  Whenever I hear her speak or teach, I learn something about the Lord and life–and this study is no exception.  I’ll be sharing more about this study in the coming weeks.

7.  I found another fun Twitter handle to follow. {If you like beautiful pictures and nature.}

 

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I love the pics I find at @BestEarthPix . Right you now can probably find lots of wintry landscapes, but this tulip field was one of my favorites in November.  Follow them here.

What did you learn in November?  What moments were worth remembering?

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Unfortunately, I was mighty late with this post, and Emily’s linkup has closed, but I was still happy to write this post as a companion to Leigh‘s What I’m Into posts…better late than never!

{UPDATED on Tuesday, December 10th: Because this post shares moments of my life that have mattered to me, I’m linking up with Emily for Tuesdays Unwrapped.}

5 comments on “7 Things I Learned In November

  1. Love this! And #5? I remember that question and the answer – I remember how we came to the conclusion that it’s as much about the journey (process) as it is the destination (what we are to be doing). Again, I wish I had realized that was you, my friend, and we could have met face to face. I’m hoping we will still get a chance to meet sometime. I am several years older than my sister as well and as adults we have found that we have many things in common. She, by the way, lives in TX – in the Dallas area.

  2. I love that one about you and your sister! I grew up with my sister, but we always seemed so different when we were young. It’s amazing how similar (and close!) we are now. I feel very blessed to have her in my life. I just wish we lived closer together!

    1. Awww! I LOVE when you read and comment on my blog, Soul Twin! I’m SO happy to be back in the same area/zip code {well, sorta -right? :) } as my best friend! Love you!

  3. Thank you for sharing the insights you received at The Barn. The longing for clarity, the restless time spent in the not knowing, the difficult realization that I’m not supposed to know yet…oh, that resonates with me so deeply.

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