|Well, I think there are several things I should say:
1. Ryan... you are cute. Sneaky little devil. But still, so cute. Thank you for making my big day special in a million little ways. I turned 3-0 in style!
2. Blog friends... shame on all you blurkers comin' outta the woodworks like that to wish me a Happy Birthday. What will I do on subsequent blogs when you disappear again?!? I learned early on with this blog-shennanigan that if you really want comments you gotta have a birthday, a tragedy, or talk bad about people's pets. Don't poke fun at somebodies insane love affair with their cat; they will open up a can of crazy on you. And then they will come out of blurkerdom. And then you will get blog comments. And then you will wonder why you ever wanted comments in the first place... because they will be mean!
In all seriousness, I don't suppose I've ever felt as loved as I did yesterday. I cannot begin to thank all of my amazing friends, family, extended blog family, and AROAD fans for all the love that you showered on me yesterday. You filled me up with so much joy, I could hardly take it all in. And if I were to have a cupcake for every person who wished me lots of fabulous cupcakes yesterday... I could feed an entire Army and perhaps finally bring this war to an end (duh, everybody knows cupcakes solve wars).
3. Dad and Mom... thanks a lot for being in ca-hoots with Ryan and exposing the world to my pre-braces pictures. I looked like a scary carnivorous animal with bad bangs.
Truly, I think we all owe you a huge thank-you for investing years of your paychecks and vacation money into Dr. Caldwell, my orthodontist. If ever teeth needed a cure... whew... those little rabbit-beaver-mountain man-teeth desperately needed one. So, yet again, I am reminded of one of the many reasons I owe you the proceeds from my first platinum album. (But don't hold your breath...)
To all of you who join me on the journey...
"Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend." Albert Camus
thank you for walking beside me.
thank you for offering me your friendship.
Speaking of walking alongside others...
Today is the big day! Every day we have a choice to make; we have a chance to walk alongside the hurting and the broken among us. But so often we drag our feet. We don't know where to begin or what to do- yet God continues to pursue us with a still small voice that whispers deep into our souls, "Feed my sheep." "Love well." "What you do to the least of these, you have done unto me."
If you feel trapped in the middle of wanting to care for the broken, but not quite knowing how to take the first step... join me today as we learn about homeless shelters and missions across the nation and how we can walk alongside of the poor among us.
HopetoTheHungry is going on now! Please visit the live and interactive site today to hear stories of how men, women, and children all across the United States are finding hope at their local homeless shelter. You will also hear from artists, both live and recorded. You can catch me at 7:13 & 11:13 a.m. or 2:13 and 5:13 p.m. (pacific) talking about experiences with my homeless friend, Dexter, and how a simple prayer asking God to show me "the broken" changed my life. Most importantly, you can donate money all day long to homeless shelters across the county. Please join me...
Spread the link. Spread the love.
Finally, I am at a dear friends wedding! Congrats to Becca and Sean... have there ever been two people more perfect for one another? I think not!
Since I completely forgot about this being a Friday afternoon wedding, I am postponing the first ever Cupcakes. Sprinkles, and Other Happy Things giveaway to Monday. That's the bad news. The good news is: my wonderful record label, INO, is sending me double sets of all the amazing Christmas music... including Phil Wickam's new Christmas album, Mercy Me, Sara Grooves, and a few others. So, now there will be two winners! One chosen by random, and another chosen by me :) I can't wait to send out coffee, candles, and Christmas music. My favorite things ever! If you haven't already entered, you can enter by leaving a comment on the blog about Magical Kingdoms! If you have entered, you should know, I have very much loved, loved, loved reading about the beautiful places and memories that you have in your homes.
Here's to finishing the week strong! Happy! And gracious!