Monday, December 2, 2013

beyond the thankful month + thanksgiving 2013 snapshots.

yeah, yeah. i know it's officially december.

and that all thankful posts should have been posted a couple of days ago; however, two things: 1) i was busy spending time with my husband and his family and the leftover pumpkin pie and tub of cool whip 2) i have been thinking a lot about gratefulness before and beyond the month of november.

gonna have a raw, honest moment here, people. we are talking thoughts straight from the journal of ilene butler. and this is not something i do often or lightly, so here we go:

being thankful has felt like a year long challenge, not just a month long one or even a one day holiday. the particular life situation we have been going through has definitely made my heart grumble or complain more than i care to admit. 

however, what i am learning is that thankfulness itself is not affected by the situation you are in. God didn't say "if you have to deal with _______________ or with _______________ that it's okay to gripe and complain. you deserve to whine for all that you have gone through. go and have a pity-party." 

NO. as followers of Jesus, we are called to be more than that.
no complaining, no grumbling. 
only thankfulness. period. 
give thanks. period. 

so today instead of complaining, grumbling or even asking for anything at all, it's a day to give total thanks 'cause we truly have so much to be thankful for. 

i wrote that on thanksgiving morning during my quiet time and i have actually looked back at that entry several times over the weekend. and Ryan and i go back and forth reminding each other of all the good things that God has blessed us with - and it's interesting to see one's hardened, grumbling heart transform into a grateful one when you open your eyes and realize how much good things you posses to be grateful for.

and speaking of things to be grateful for, thanksgiving weekend with Ryan is one of them...
it was our first married one together so it was def special. we enjoyed a thanksgiving feast (pumpkin pies courtesy of yours truly!) with his wonderful family and even made a mad dash to some of the Black Thursday Friday happenings.

to be honest, there was a piece of my heart that missed my family and our own thanksgiving traditions but i think that is something i will always feel when i am apart from my parents and sisters, no matter what holiday. thank goodness for technology 'cause all of us can stay connected that way!

and of course, the random, disheveled Santa at Walmart when we went to pick up pictures from the photo center. however, he was the nicest guy ever and so was his assistant, so we couldn't say no when they asked if we would be the first to test out their camera as they prepared for their day of Christmas pictures. this picture still cracks me up. it's so random - and Santa, your beard and unbutton jacket. too much. hashtag crying laughing.

and last but not least, THIS is on the top of my list of things i am thankful for. leftover pumpkin pie. best thing ever. and yes, as i have been informed on IG, i do not have enough whip cream on this pie - this, i know. i ran out so that was all that was left in the tub. either way, whip cream or not, this pie made me one happy stuffed turkey.

peace out, peeps as i go eat the leftover crumbs from the last slice of pumpkin pie.

much love.
{happy tuesday, friend.}

p.s. are you GB Liem 'cause you just won the suh-weet Queeni Kathleeni giveaway! shoot me an email at muchloveilly at gmail dot com to claim your prize. congrats to GB and thank you, Katie for one rocking giveaway! 


  1. Aw, I love this entire journal post…..and I'm thankful for pumpkin pie leftovers too!!!


  2. You're totally right, thankfulness IS a year long challenge. It's not easy, and not always fun, but it's all the hard work that you put into life that makes it that much most awesome! Once you "zoom out" of the little things (cuz really, they are little things) that you're complaining about, you can see just how much we are given. It's really wonderful! *^______^*

  3. Ha, I love how your tiger shirt keeps popping up in your pics. It is definitely one of your faves.


  4. Aww...I am so happy that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, lovely. Plus, I am totally craving pumpkin pie now...YUM! Kisses, love.

  5. I'm happy for you, but I'm sad you're having a tough time. Makes me want to run over with some chipotle to have a long chat.

  6. oh, I love the REAL thankfulness. so good to remember that and be mindful all year long.

    and I love your newly-chopped bangs. too beautiful, dear.

  7. I love all these pictures! And thanks for sharing your words with us. I am thankful for you!

  8. Thanks for a great reminder! Learning to be thankful all the time is something I need to practice more.

  9. Any indiscretion involving pumpkin pie is automatically forgiven :) No, but really - this is such a meaningful post and I agree wholeheartedly. Also, today's Giving Tuesday which after a week of being thankful and buying stuff, is a great opportunity to find a way to give back! :)

  10. the pictures are great but i'm fixated on your hair, it looks awesome!

  11. Leftover pie is THE best. Such a great treat to have (and I also have to agree with you on the whipped cream, the more, the merrier I am!). :)

    Oh, and your thoughts on thankfulness? Spot on. It's a daily struggle for me to find the moments, the little things that I'm thankful for but doing so is so key to my joy and happiness in the long run (and short term, too). :)

  12. That pie looks delicious!

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