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DEC/JAN 2017 Editor’s Note from Jen Theisen

As 2016 draws to a close, I have so much to be grateful for. As the New Year approaches, many of us will plot goals and make plans for the year. Ladies, I’m just trying to get through the week here. Plans for 2017 have not yet begun. Even still, amidst the hurry and the haste, I have experienced grace and focused on gratitude.


Sadly, we received some horrific news this fall. My dear cousin and her husband were killed after being struck by a driver in a head-on collision. I am filled with overwhelming grief, but so grateful for my sustaining faith. It is not for me to understand why. It is enabling grace allowing me to have peace, knowing they are in the best place possible now. Sue and Drew and Aunt Sandra came to visit last May. We went out to dinner and spent the day at our house just visiting and relaxing. Our day was filled with stories, laughter, and was a truly fun family time. Anyone who knows me understands my pace. I pack a lot into one week, probably more than I should. But that day, I didn’t try to pack it all in. I was just present. I was just there enjoying family. I am so grateful for this recent visit and for the amazing grace that let me to slow down. I am grateful for this memory and for this sacred time. Sue was an amazing woman of faith. She exuded gratitude and made it a lifestyle. She touched many with her life, unceasingly sharing her faith. My prayers are with their wonderful children, who are also rooted in faith, but beyond devastated by the loss of their parents. This jolted me into reality, causing me to revere life and our time as precious.

I am so thankful for my family and friends. I am a very lucky gal. In the past, I have shared with my readers just how blessed I am by the posse of ladies I call friends. These women are strong, faithful, and courageous. These gals make things happen. If one of us goes down, the rest rally ‘round and lift them up. Time with my ladies brings the joyful moments that mean the most.

Fall has been exciting with the celebration of the wedding of a friend’s daughter, cross-country, and lots of football. On a beautiful day, we all piled in the football stands and cheered on our boys. This will be the State championship to remember! It was such a delight to look down the bleachers and see all my wonderful friends sharing in the excitement. I have so many good people in my life. My heart is full.

As we look forward to 2017, let’s take some time to slow down and appreciate all we have. I, for one, will be taking time to look at areas that may need change or focused attention. We are not guaranteed a certain amount of days; let’s make them count. It has been my honor to share in this journey of faith, family, friends, fitness, and finance with all of you. I hope this Grace and Gratitude issue inspires you toward a grace and gratitude driven life. The Journey Continues.

Jen Theisen
Publisher & Editor-in-Chief

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