As the new year is fresh upon us, I have found myself reflecting on “setting the table” for these upcoming months in both business and personal life. This plays out by making sure items are in place to reach goals and identifying areas that leave room for growth and all of the things that seem to be what a brand new annual start is about. However, one of the words that kept ringing in my mind and perhaps pulsing from my heart was something that can so easily be missed or forgotten…that word is gratitude. Sometimes, for myself at least, I can get so busy in the hustle of improvement, that I forget to stop and acknowledge exactly the place we are so fortunate to be or the people we are so blessed with to love.

In a recent article I read, written by Joanna Gaines, she expanded on the fact that “gratitude turns what you have into enough.” The trick, she further explained, is practicing a kind of thankfulness that isn’t based on a time or place or circumstance. It became so real to me. Gratitude should not just be something we practice. It should be a lifestyle we live. When we are focused on the present, it naturally lends itself to the future in an organic peaceful way.

We can learn so much from these beautiful souls that you will read about in this issue. For some, their gratitude was established out of a hard place. Yet they made the CHOICE to press on and carry the good. From Vietnam Veteran Doug Dinsmore to Charles and Kim Christmas, Dwight Harris and Karen Woodard, they all so graciously share their stories of the paths that led them to where they are today. In the words of Joanna Gaines, “Even in the trials of life, if we have eyes to see them, we can find good things everywhere we look.”

We are so GRATEFUL for each one of you who continue to support these advertisers listed on page 136. They are the ones who make this magazine possible for our community to read at no charge. You can always pick up your own personal copy at any of those locations thanks to their generosity.

As we slide strong into 2019, we are so thankful for the opportunity to be a part of such an incredible community and for the relationships shared. You are what makes us love what we do.

Landon & Mandi Spivey