November is an odd month. For some, they’re writing feverishly trying to complete NaNoWriMo. Yeah, that’s a link. Go ahead and click it if you don’t know what I’m talking

For others, it’s a time of reflection. Many people I know dedicate the month to expressing their gratitude for the many blessings in their lives by posting a daily list of thankfuls on facebook for their friends and family to read.


For me, it’s a time when I struggle to find balance. The daylight hours dwindle to nothing and my energy and enthusiasm goes with it. At the same time, I can feel the excitement for the holidays growing. It’s like a charge in the air. Maybe that’s because I live in a house filled with children.


In the spirit of the season, I decided to share my list of thankfuls today.

  • If you’ve read my books, you’ll see that they always start with a dedication to Tara (with one exception when my mom died). Every good thing in my life can be traced back to her. I’m so very grateful to have found a woman willing to put up with all my crap and love me nonetheless.
  • My mom raised me as a single parent in the seventies and eighties in rural Idaho. At the time, it didn’t strike me as extraordinary. It was simply life. Now, looking back on my childhood, I’m overwhelmed by the enormity of the sacrifices she made for me and my brothers and sister. She was an impressive, strong woman who stood and faced the challenges of life with bravery and integrity. I owe who I am to her.
  • As mentioned above, I’ve been blessed with an abundance of children. Each and every one of them has taught me something important about who I am and who I want to be. They’ve taught me about the infinite depth of a parent’s love for her children and helped me to understand my own mother better.
  • I’m thankful for the fabulous career I enjoy as a writer. It’s an amazing thing to write a book. It’s even more amazing to know that someone on the other side of the planet has read it and enjoyed it. Occasionally, I’ll get a message from a reader and that is the best payday ever. Thank you to all who have purchased my books, read my work, and taken a moment to let me know it touched your life in a positive way.
  • I grew up poor, but I’ve never known real hunger. My cupboard is full, as is my freezer (all three of them). When someone in my house says “There’s nothing to eat” what that person is really saying is “I’m not hungry enough to eat what we have and I’m craving something else.” Or “I’m too lazy right now to cook a meal. Why can’t the magical food fairies come and bring Thai takeout with them?”

The list could go on and on and on, really. There are little things each and every day that make me feel blessed, that make my heart fill with gratitude. If I wrote all those things here, y’all would give up and stop reading really quick. Suffice it to say that the details of my life are pretty damn awesome and I’m lucky enough to recognize it most of the time.

What about y’all? What are you thankful for?



  1. Mmmm interesting question…. My partner Jo for much the same reasons 😄 she puts up with my crap and my strange choices and loves me nonetheless… My opportunities in life which give me the freedom to live the way I choose…. My few close friends who are there for me whatever time of day I may be having a crisis…. My education which allows me the enormous pleasure of reading books written by people on the other side of the world and to write and express myself even if I’m not published (yet)… I grew up poor and it has given me the strength to know I can survive most things and not be permanently knocked down…. And my ability to communicate complex information in a clear way which gives me great professional satisfaction…. I think we should all take time out to give thanks… So Jove thanks for the reminder to contemplate what I am thankful for!!! And the brilliant stories….


  2. I am grateful for friends like Jove Belle, who is so present in spirit when you are with you it is as if you are the only person on the planet. That she is also a terrific writer is a bonus. That she lives in the same state you do is a gift.


  3. Thankful to have met you this summer Jove & for my wonderful life partner Shelley Thrasher who makes everyday special and for our pets–even my special girl who left us last week but will always be Forever in our hearts.


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