My Favorite Things in 2011

For Julie Andrews (as Maria Von Trapp), it was raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, among other things. But neither of those made the list of my 100 favorite things of 2011 (all of which should be prefaced with “By God’s grace"). After the first few, they're only very generally in any order of priority or preference. So don't get all worked up about the order; they're all my favorites, okay?
1. The birth of our fourth grandchild, Ryder McCane
2. The lovely Robin accepting a new job
3. Re-establishing and again enjoying a writing ministry
4. Making enough money to live, after resigning a generous salary at the end of last year
5. Feeling my faith grow and deepen
6. Taking a wonderful vacation with the kids and grandkids on Old Mission Peninsula
7. Climbing the climbing dune at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
8. Having all our kids and grandkids for Christmas dinner
9. Watching my kids with their kids
10. Creating and enjoying more margin in my life
11. Seeing my son become a worship leader
12. Lunches with Aaron
13. Lunches with Calleigh and Aubrey
14. Coffee at Starbucks with Aaron
15. Easter Sunday at Cobblestone Community Church
16. Signing the Quit Going to Church book contract
17. Signing the Take Time to Be Holy book contract
18. Signing the How to Fall in Love with God book contract
19. Writing The Quest
20. Writing Quit Going to Church
21. Writing Take Time to Be Holy
22. Writing twelve sermons for publication
23. Publishing Jordan River Anthology as an ebook
24. Preaching 24 messages
25. Praying with a first-time attender to church to receive salvation
26. Performing two weddings
27. Exercising regularly at Bever Fitness Center
28. Giving away 12% of our income
29. Visiting the Cincinnati Zoo with the kids and grandkids
30. A lovely anniversary stay at The Inn & Spa at Cedar Falls
31. Introducing our grandkids to s’mores
32. Tuesdays with Calleigh
33. Mia’s second birthday party
34. Miles’s fourth birthday party
35. Calleigh’s second birthday party
36. Taking the grandkids to see the Christmas lights
37. Taking the grandkids to the Krohn Conservatory Christmas show
38. Two Gentlemen of Verona at Cincinnati Shakespeare Theater
39. The Life and Death of King John at Cincinnati Shakespeare Theater
40. Seeing The Compleat Wrks of Wm Shakspr at the Shakespeare Tavern in Atlanta
41. Visiting with Rick and Glenn in Atlanta
42. Sweet prayer times in my prayer chair
43. Posting more than a prayer a day on my prayer blog
44. Having time to mow the lawn myself and accomplish some things around the house
45. Aubrey’s thirtieth birthday party at Jessica’s house
46. Updating (and re-releasing) Don’t Check Your Brains at the Door
47. The June Great Strides walk
48. Our family gathering in Wisconsin for Vince & Amanda’s wedding
49. The Friends of the Lane Library annual book sale in May
50. A MidSummer Night’s Dream at Seasongood Pavilion in Eden Park
51. Leading J__ B_______ in a prayer of salvation in my study
52. The visit of Norah and the boys in August
53. The visit of Don and Arvilla in September
54. Taking the grandkids to the Chick-Fil-A playland
55. Taking the grandkids to McDonald’s playland
56. Lunch with Don and Christie in December
57. Playing at Hanover Township Park with Calleigh
58. Dinner at The Grand Finale with the lovely Robin
59. Staying at the Davenport Hotel in Spokane
60. Dinners at Walt’s Barbecue
61. Julius Caesar at Cincinnati Shakespeare Theater
62. Dinners at Paesano’s
63. Having my kids and grandkids living 15 minutes away
64. Having my kids and grandkids living across the street from each other
65. Swimming in the pool with the grandkids
66. Jane Eyre with Robin at the Mariemont Theater
67. Visiting the Bakers in Denver
68. Reuniting with Dorothy, Vernon, Warren, and Bill Maclean in April
69. Enjoying fires in the fireplace with the lovely Robin
70. Lunches at Ryan’s Tavern with Tim
71. Getting books from Lane Library
72. Getting new iPhones for me and Robin
73. Getting ebooks and audiobooks on Overdrive
74. Having more time to spend with the people I love most
75. Reading One Thousand Gifts (Voskamp)
76. My fifty-third birthday dinner with Robin, the kids, and the grandkids
77. Reading Thirteen Moons (Frazier)
78. Watching Royal Pains and Castle with the lovely Robin
79. Reading Hannah Coulter (Berry)
80. Saving hundreds (thousands?) of dollars in groceries
81. Reading Love Is an Orientation (Marin)
82. Reading Quiet LOUD to the grandkids
83. Reading The Swiss Family Robinson (Wyss)
84. Reading Hellhound on His Trail (Sides)
85. Anniversary drive with Robin through Ross Co., and walk through Chillicothe Corps
86. Reading No Ordinary Time (Goodwin)
87. Reading A Walk in the Woods (Bryson)
88. Reading Ben Hur (Wallace)
89. Reading I Am a Follower (Sweet)
90. Reading The Personal Memoirs of U.S. Grant (Grant)
91. Re-reading the books of Samuel Logan Brengle
92. Hiking in the Hocking Hills
93. Selling hundreds of dollars worth of stuff on Amazon
94. Watching Sherlock Holmes: The Game of Shadows with Robin
95. Watching White Christmas with Robin
96. The privilege of voting
97. Publishing articles in Priority!, Seek, The War Cry, The Lookout, Direction, Christian Standard, etc.
98. Praying at the General Session of the Ohio Statehouse
99. Preaching at The Salvation Army Center Hill Corps
100. Reading Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln’s Killer (Swanson)

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