Thanks Mom!

October 21st

Phoebe

In honor of my brave mama being stronger than I can imagine 29 years ago today, (at the ripe age of 24) — a list of adventures, joys and lessons that have so far made this wild ride incredibly enjoyable:

1. My family. From my Aunt Karen in Pennsylvania to my Grandma Max in Tucson, I am one of the lucky ones who has a family I not only like to spend time with, but truly love.

2. Watching the sunrise over Machu Picchu. I’ll never forget the majesty of this mountainous climb.

3. Swimming. I often feel part-fish. Rivers, lakes, oceans — I love to be in the water.

4. My girlfriends. I’ve got some of those amazing friendships that make me shake my head with disbelief, they are just that good. The give and take of friendship can often be complicated, but thankfully I’ve got some patient, loving and gifted girls who regularly remind me they love me and encourage me to be better.

5. Dogs. Even though those silly dog rescue people didn’t show up last week, I’m getting a dog. That’s my birthday gift to myself. Before the year’s end I’m going to have a four-legged friend sharing the bed.

6. My church. I’ve finally found a place where I feel at home, but still challenged to keep learning. I simply love this congregation.

7. Pumpkins, may they be in bagels, lotions or candles — they remind me of Fall. Fall in Phoenix is sweet dessert after the brutal summer.

8. Cooks Illustrated magazine. It is my favorite thing to read each month, hands down.

9. The New York Times magazine. It is my favorite thing to read each Sunday morning, preferably over a hot cup of tea from a patio perch.

10. Writing. Novels, articles and this blog — it doesn’t matter what form, I feel creatively challenged putting pen to paper.

11. New Fall clothing.

12. Sew-alongs.

13. Amy Butler.

14. Snarkiness.

15. Riding my bike to work.

16. Mixed CDs. This is still my very favorite gift to receive, perhaps second only to a flight somewhere new.

17. Bolivia. I love the people, culture, music, food and way of life.

18. My friendship with my brother. It’s something relatively new and I am so glad as adults we are this close. I look forward to the day we live closer to each other and can raise our families together.

19. Griffin House. I feel like he writes music with me in mind. Seeing him in concert was incredible. Salty Senor has good taste.

20. Africa. The people, the simplicity of life, the wildness and the complete and total insanity of day-to-day existence. I feel my most useful and spiritual when I’m working on the dark continent.

21. Visiting the Cape of Good Hope.

22. Going to Prince concerts with my mom. She is an avid Prince fan and while this embarrassed the tar out of me during my adolescence, it just cracks me up as an adult.

23. Domesticity! Learning to sew, craft, knit, cook, garden and the true joy I receive from the craft blog world.

24. Public health. I love my field. I feel like this (and writing) are what I am meant to do and having that sense of purpose is an incredible stroke of luck.

25. Reading. My new current love is “Three Junes.” It is art on paper. I am reading it slowly to savor every word.

26. Flying through the Costa Rican jungle with Emily and John.

27. Mexico. I feel at home in this beautiful, culturally-rich country.

28. Giving gifts. This is one of the simple joys of life that makes me silly happy, including cooking for others.

29. Javier Bardem. Yum.

Life is good.

~K

Posted in
Happy Hippie, Journal
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49 Responses

  1. Happy Birthday! Hugs!

  2. Happy Birthday, Kel! So much wonderfulness at such an early age – and so much more to come. Cheers!

  3. Happy Birthday!

  4. Pink Sky October 21, 2008

    Happy Birthday!!! 🙂

  5. Happy Birthday!

  6. Tina in Duluth October 21, 2008

    Happy Birthday Dear Kelli!

  7. Happy Birthday! You have a lot to celebrate! 🙂

  8. Oh I hope you get your dog soon! How fun! And I agree about the pumpkin. It’s the only thing that feels like fall in So Cal. 🙂

  9. Happy Birthday! Is that Phoebe?

  10. Yes, you are truly blessed! Have a wonderful day 🙂

  11. Happy, happy, happy birthday Miss Kelli! Have an amazing day : )

  12. Awww – happy birthday!! You certainly are packing a lot of goodness into this here life. Wishing you many more wonderful adventures and simple pleasures in the year to come. 🙂

  13. You have much to be thankful, and I’m sure there are many, many, many things you’ve left off this sweet list.
    Happy Birthday

  14. Happy Birthday Kelli. May the next year be just as sweet!

  15. I hope you have a wonderful birthday! That’s certainly a wonderful list!

  16. oo…oo…thanks for the link (I guess), now I *need* those Born persimmon boots. Just what I’m looking for! Unfortunately, then I would need to spend money on skirts to go with them.
    also, we are getting a dog too! A german Shepherd! In december! 😀 Dogs are the best.

  17. Ohhh….I remembered on my own that it was your birthday and just sent off my wishes! I just clicked to your blog and now see that you tipped us off. 😉 Hope it’s a fabulous day my friend!

  18. Happy Birthday Kelli! I’ve shared your blog address with a friend who is interested in the PC. Love Cooks Illustrated!!! We have not made a bad recipe from that mag yet. Celebrate!

  19. Happy Birthday Kelli,

    If you were here, I’d make you a batch of pumpkin scones!

    Rachael

  20. Awww, Happy Birthday Kelli! I hope your day is truly special, just as you are.

  21. Happy Birthday my sweet friend.

    As well, I say Si! Si! to Javier as well. Guapo!

  22. I want a dog so bad. Happy birthday!

  23. Happy Birthday! Enjoy your special day!

  24. Katyrenee October 21, 2008

    Enjoy 29!

  25. Happy, happy birthday, Kelli!!

  26. Happy Birthday Kelli!

  27. Happy Birthday sweet thang!

  28. A great list. Hope you’re having a fun & joyful birthday.

  29. Happy, Happy Birthday!! Hope you have a wonderful day! You deserve it. Can’t wait to hear about your celebration. Hope you’ll share! 🙂

  30. You are going to let a dog on the bed?! 😉 This I have to see. (and I’m telling you, there’s nothing like a furry face to greet you in the morning)
    I cannot WAIT to meet this pup. I already know what I’m giving him/her on their ‘birth’day.

  31. (and also, LOVE that dog you’ve got up there. Whose is it?)

  32. Happy Birthday!!! What a wonderful list! I hope that it grows longer and richer with each passing year.

  33. Happy Birthday! I think you will love having a dog. Mine is at the top of my gratitude list. Do I see home-made dog biscuit recipes in your future?

  34. Happy Birthday! I can not wait to see pup pics all over this blog! Gonna live vicariously with the four legged friend!

  35. Funny….I bought Amy Butler’s Baby book this last weekend and today when I was flipping through it at work I glanced toward the back and there was one of my favorite blogs staring back at me….africankelli.com. I got all excited and went cubicle to cubicle showing my co-workers. That should have given me an idea that it was a special day for you. Happy Birthday Kelli! You deserve an awesome day. ENJOY!

  36. Happy Birthday!

    We are looking for a new fuzzy face too.

  37. Great list – happy birthday! I hope 29 is great for you!

  38. ¡Feliz Cumpleaños!
    While it’s your birthday and you are the one supposed to be receiving gifts, I was the one who received a gift from you today! Thanks soooooo much! I love it all!

    BTW, Prince is a musical genius!!! We took our 5 year old daughter to his concert that was “in the round” about 4 years ago–his last tour, I believe.

  39. Happy birthday to you dear Kelli. I whish we’d live closer to give you a big hug. About the list, I’m sure there will be much more to add in the years to come.

  40. Comment 42: Happy Birthday Kelli!!! Obviously I am not the only person who you continue to inspire and enrich. Thank you dear birthday girlie! (yes, get the dog . . but don’t give up on Javier Bardem !)

  41. Happy Birthday!

    Thanks for all the effort you put into this blog — I really enjoy your discussions and crafty ideas … keep it coming!

  42. Larissa Stretton October 22, 2008

    Kelli,

    Sorry to be late, but many happy returns of the day to you!! Happy 29th!!

    Larissa

  43. belated happy happy, kelli! you rock!

  44. happy belated birthday, kelli…. you wonderful, inspiring, joyful, fabulous woman!! i hope that this year brings you everything you dream of!
    xox

  45. Happy belated birthday!
    My birthday is the 22nd. We’re only 11 years, 364 days apart! (God, I’m old.)
    Hope you had a wonderful day.

  46. happy belated birthday kelly!

  47. I’m late, but HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! I love your list. I hope you had a fabulous day, I just adore you!

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