Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.

My Gifts


Sometimes, I’m a little slow to catch on. I’m never the first to find anything. To be honest, few people are. (No matter what they tell you.)

One of the things I was slow to catch on to was Ann Voskamp.

Ann VoskampLuckily, people around me are much faster on the uptake and share happily with me. A chance conversation a few days before Christmas brought this woman to my attention.

I doubt if I’ll ever meet her, this side of heaven. She lives in Canada with her husband and six (6!) kids and she homeschools.


She does take some speaking engagements, so I might hear her one day. If I’m lucky.

Ann is one of those killer serene people whose voice is calm and calming. What she writes reads like poetry. Beautiful, God-smack-in-the-middle poetry. I have to calm my center to be able to hear what she’s saying when I read it. I adore her work!

I read her blog A Holy Experience faithfully.

aholyexperience-logoAt least, as faithfully as I read anything.

Anyway, the point of my blog. I’m reading her book, ONE THOUSAND GIFTS.

1000 gifts

I also gave a copy to one of my favorite people in the world, who is one of my top gifts. This over-achieving gift of mine is ahead of me in the book and in making her list of gifts.

And that’s okay. We each move at our own pace and learn in different ways. I think instead of trying to only learn from the book, I’m trying to absorb it. Soak it in. (Okay, I want to wallow in it.)

Can I tell you one of the things on my list of gifts from God? Today, even though it’s been a long winter, I’m thankful for snow. (Don’t smack me.)

It’s absolutely beautiful drifting down. I love the way it covers the earth’s uglies and makes it “perfect” (at least for a time) while reminding me that I’m Washed in The Blood, so I’m Whiter than Snow.

Snow isn’t first on my list. And my list isn’t in order of what I’m most grateful for. Like me, it’s a helter-skelter bunch of thankful words, sprouting from a (sometimes) thankful heart.

Yes, I said sometimes. I’m not going to lie to you. Sometimes I’m not so thankful, and sometimes I forget. Whichever it is, I’m learning.

If you haven’t read Ann, please check out her blog. I think you’ll like it.  (The pics all came from there. She’s a great photographer!) And if you’re curious about her 1000 GIFTS, read it, too.

You might just put Ann and her book on your gift list. (I did.)


Author: Susan Shay

For as long as I can remember, I've loved two things--reading and people--and that led me to become a writer. Many of my stories are set in Small Town Worlds. I'm a wife, mother, sibling and an aunt. I have a deep faith in God, and an exciting life in Christ. Maybe I shouldn't be (after all, he's God!) but I'm constantly amazed at the things He's up to. :)

4 thoughts on “My Gifts

  1. Reading is my passion, I prefer spending my money on books than on anything else. Unfortunately here in Sicily reading is not popular. I was astonished when visiting friends and not finding ONE book, magazine or newspaper in their house. This has Always been so, not only now because of the internet. In fact there are many places in Sicily where there is no internet yet, unbelievable as it may sound. Homeschooling is spreading in Italy, but it’s not so popular yet.

    • Oh, wow, Francesca. I can’t imagine living in a house that doesn’t have books in every room. I’ve always been a reader. When #3 son was born, I had a book on the delivery table with me. One of the nurses wrestled it from me right before he made his appearance. 🙂
      I didn’t homeschool my children, but one of my sisters did. She had five kiddos loved teaching them at home. I imagine it’s much easier these days with the internet.
      It’s wonderful to meet you, btw. I’m so glad you visited my Small Town World. Please, come again!

I'm so glad you dropped by my Small Town World! Hope you'll leave a comment. I really enjoy hearing from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s