WIAW- Abundance

by lindsay cotter on November 23, 2011

How often do we wake up already knowing what we will have for breakfast, or at least what we want for breakfast? I’d say everyday! Heck, most of us have planned out the whole day of meals, snacks, etc. And some, yes some, are way ahead and have planned out a full week of meals (that’s impressive!).

My friends, this is such a blessing. One that I (we) so so so often take for granted. As I look back over the years, I recall a time where food was not so abundant…..in Africa. I was given the opportunity to travel with a Mission Team to Lusaka, Zambia in the summer of 2006.  While there, we hosted several camps for all the orphanages in that area. I got to love on these kids all day, every day. Actually, they loved on me!

I remember splitting my lunches with my translator, so that he could at least eat something each day. You see, I didn’t need to worry, we (the Americans) would have dinner waiting for us back at our camp grounds. I learned to be grateful, for whatever it was!

God showed me a lot during that time. He showed me how to Feed. Feed in thanksgiving, Feed in gratitude, Feed in Love, Feed in Humility, Feed in Faith, and so much more.

He taught me how to Feed my Soul.

I hope never for get that.

Day 4 and Day 5 of my Thankful Board.

africa

Thank you God for your abundance. Let us count our blessings today!

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Thank you Jen for hosting my last American WIAW.

Here’s a look at some of our last meals at home.

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The meal below? Yes, that would be GF mac and cheese with Maramite, carrots, tomatoes, and GF Chicken nuggets.

Can you tell we are cleaning out the pantry? haha.

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I was lucky to have scored the lovely Christin’s homemade PB.

She made it just for me, with marmite. Christin, I love you!

PB with marmiteo-matic

And of course, my last Kombucha fix. I will miss my GT Kombucha.

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What are you feeding on this week? If anything, Feed on Gratitude!

 

Cheers,

LC

p.s.

I plan on posting everyone’s Thankful pictures tomorrow or Friday before we leave for NZ. Keep them coming!

{ 80 comments… read them below or add one }

Shannon November 23, 2011 at 1:32 pm

I think I need to figure out how to plan out a whole day’s worth of meals… how on earth does one do such a thing?

Your meals always look sooo stinkin’ delicious! Even if it is from just “cleaning out the pantry”.

This week I’ve been eating a bunch of oatmeal sauteed with some vanilla and honey. So simple, but strangely so good.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:19 pm

haha, true. I can barely plan my mornings. I think oatmeal sauteed with vanilla/honey sounds PERFECT though. Warms my heart too!

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Stephanie November 23, 2011 at 1:34 pm

What a lovely reminder for us to be more grateful for the abundance that we get to enjoy every day. I try to take the time to really reflect on how lucky I am, especially when things feel hard. I find that I’m often very grateful for my bed. It’s comfortable, it’s warm, I get to share it with my husband and my dog (OK, the dog sleeps on the floor on his own bed, but all I have to do is drop down my hand to pat him on the head and remind myself that he’s there). I’m sometimes in awe of the fact that I sleep in a more comfortable bed than 99.9999% of the human population has ever slept in. (Errr…those numbers? Just for illustrative purposes. I don’t have the math to back it up.)

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:21 pm

I totally agree steph. I am in awe myself. So tonight when we go to bed, lets snuggle up to our loved ones and be thankful for that warmth. And the dog too of course.
;)

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Allie November 23, 2011 at 1:47 pm

Im so jealous that you went to Africa!!! I want to go soo badly!! Its been on my heart for over a year now, but it just hasnt happened yet. I want to go on an oversea mission trip SOO badly!! Thankful for your gratitude and faithfulness to the Lord’s plan and will for you and your hubby!! <3 <3

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:22 pm

Oh i am sure you would LOVE it Allie! Keep praying that request to God. I know He’d love to use you there!

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jobo November 23, 2011 at 2:02 pm

You are so right…abundance. We have it, so many do not. You always have the perfect perspective, just a slight nudge we all need in the right direction. WHAT matters. What doesn’t. Thank you for that. So much.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:24 pm

little nudges help. And you know what, it makes me happy to realize that so many people are thinking the same. <3

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Katie @ Raisins&Apples November 23, 2011 at 2:08 pm

mmm pantry meals. I’m not exactly looking forward to that part of moving!

although those blueberries look yummy.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:25 pm

fresh produce is the first to go! Gotta get all those fruits and vegetables eaten, then the boring pantry meals can come. haha. Right?

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katie November 23, 2011 at 2:09 pm

We should always be grateful and thankful every day for all we have!

You are so beautiful! Happy last American WIAW to you! What day do you guys leave, tomorrow?!

Love you!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 4:40 pm

We leave for Dallas tomorrow, then fly out of there on Friday! WOO! I want to take everyone with me. NOw that would be a great blog retreat, eh? hehe.

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Jess November 23, 2011 at 2:20 pm

Abundance. Wow. You’re right — rather than fretting over WHAT we’re eating, we should be downright thankful that we have so many food options at our fingertips and can pick and choose however we like. I LOVE your perspective!!!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:25 pm

i loved your post this morning about thanksgiving. Kinda what I was saying here….it’s the bigger picture. right? Love you!

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Tessa @ Amazing Asset November 23, 2011 at 2:28 pm

This is such a thought-provoking post Lindsay, thank you for this! I love your perspective on this, it’s so important to remember such things!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:26 pm

Yes indeed Friend. Lets enjoy the abundance tomorrow with a grateful heart. Calories can take a hike. hehe.

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Lisa ♥ Healthful Sense November 23, 2011 at 2:41 pm

This is so beautifully written from your heart. We do have such abundance here in the states…
It’s a struggle for me to see people suffering or hungry while we sit here planning out our Thanksgiving feast and everyone’s talking about what they want for Christmas.
Thank you for this reminder of the beauty of giving and feeling grateful for what we have!!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:27 pm

Yes, you almost feel useless when you see or hear about the struggles. But I think if we just give a little of what we have, it can make a world of a difference. Right?

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Alexandra November 23, 2011 at 2:43 pm

Ahh what a wonderful last American WIAW! really gets ya thinking about what we should focus on this time of year :)
Have a blessed and amazing thanksgiving girl!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:33 pm

You too sweet friend. Enjoy that time at home!

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Heather @ Better With Veggies November 23, 2011 at 2:47 pm

What a perfectly timed reminder of how blessed we are, in ways we never think about. Thanks for sharing that! Have a great flight to NZ! :)

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:34 pm

Thank you Heather! I think we all are truly blessed. Have a great Thanksgiving and enjoy the abundance!

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lauren@spicedplate November 23, 2011 at 2:49 pm

I have some of that ginger kombucha waiting for me in my fridge, and a crustless pumpkin pie going in the oven. We do have such abundance…I am so grateful to be able to afford food…not so long ago, it was a struggle for us, which I don’t say very often but your honesty in this post has prompted me to be honest. I won’t write about it on the blog because it’s almost too personal, but just having food on the table is such a blessing, every day I’m grateful. It’s such an honor to host Thanksgiving this year!
I have a hard time planning for the whole week…never mind a day! Although, I usually know what I’m eating for breakfast because I look forward to it so much!
Looking forward to staying updated on your travels…Lauren

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:35 pm

yes, and good food for that matter. Enjoy the aromas of it all this thanksgiving friend!

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Mamarunsbarefoot November 23, 2011 at 3:05 pm

Feed on gratitude.. Now that’s an amazing quote!!!!!!! I’m going to keep that one in my head for a long time. ((hugs))

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:35 pm

oh Big hug to you too Nora! Feed on Hugs tomorrow. <3

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Heather (Where's the Beach) November 23, 2011 at 3:08 pm

Thank you for that reminder about food. I definitely think we tend to take it for granted that we have our next meal coming right around the corner. No worries.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:36 pm

Yes, we sure do. it so easy to get caught up in the daily food fixes. Time to step back and really appreciate that we can get out fix, haha. Right?

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Melissa @ Live, Love, & Run November 23, 2011 at 3:44 pm

I love this post beyond words. It happens too often that we take everyday meals for granted. I almost feel like it’s the perfect example of “ignorance is bliss”. We don’t have children like them around us every day to remind us of how lucky we are, so without that reminder, we’re pretty ignorant to the suffering that is occuring continents away. I know that every time I think about those suffering, my heart breaks. I have often been brought to tears at the thought of someone praying for even the smallest bowl of food. Just something to give them energy…when I can just walk up to my refrigerator and reach for a to-go almond milk or a perfect pomegranate. These simple yet extraordinary blessings are taken for granted.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:39 pm

I shed a little tear too. Breaks my heart. Next time we sit down for a meal, lets say a little prayer for those who are hungry. xoxo

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Jamie November 23, 2011 at 4:11 pm

Your posts are always so inspiring!
I hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving and a safe trip!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 4:39 pm

Oh thank you Jamie. That means so much! Happy Thanksgiving dear friend. <3

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tea-bagginit November 23, 2011 at 4:22 pm

this post really made me realize how much i have grown to care about you & your family (even though we haven’t met in “real” life!) – i found myself getting sad that you’re moving so far away (which i realize is ridiculous since it won’t change the way i get to interact with you online!).
your posts are always so insightful and inspiring and they are constantly a source of strength for me.
i wish you all the luck in the world, a happy fulfilling thanksgiving, and very very very safe travels!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:39 pm

Woman, you just made MY day! I care about you so much and have forever grateful for your encouragement, your inspiration, your friendship! sending hugs your way.

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Katie November 23, 2011 at 4:36 pm

I think cleaning out the pantry meals are the best! I’m inadvertently eating them a lot lately. Not because I am purposefully cleaning out the pantry, but because I haven’t been shopping in far too long. I’ve been doing the short get what I need type tips for about 6 months. I need a serious stock up trip SOON.

Which is all kinds of the antithesis to this post. Yeesh, nice Katie. Real nice.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:41 pm

And that is why I love you! Thank you for making me laugh. We know your real heart, its very giving! well, unless the packers lose.

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Nichole November 23, 2011 at 4:49 pm

AWESOME picture. What an opportunity. It really makes you want to reach out. We are so, so blessed. Beautiful story.

You are just the best, you know that?

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:58 pm

NO you are the best! hehe. I love ya Nichole!

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Bonnie November 23, 2011 at 5:19 pm

What a beautiful post, friend! I am thankful for you! We most definitely live in abundance…and I appreciate that reminder! Loved seeing you smiling with those kids in Africa – what a cool opportunity to serve (and be served, as I know it always happens!). Last WIAW post on US soil…kinda makes me sentimental! But excited for the journey ahead for you and James.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:59 pm

You know I think I learned more about Gods love from those Kids than they did from me. It was amazing!

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katie @KatieDid November 23, 2011 at 5:22 pm

That must have been such an enriching experience- and wow you look very young in that picture! Was it during college for you? I am feeding off learning and growing during my travels right now, embracing spontaneity, change, culture, and independence!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 7:59 pm

Yes! So enriching! It was a year after college for me. I would go back in a heartbeat. I know you would love the culture and the people as well Katie.

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Christin@purplebirdblog November 23, 2011 at 5:35 pm

Oh Linds, I love your ultimate giving and sacrificing heart! What a wonderful reminder to those of us who have so much, that giving produces an even greater sense of gratefulness and love! And I’m so stoked you like the PB, obviously! <3

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 8:00 pm

I hope to go back one day. I really think You would love it there. I can just see it! And thank you again for my personal PB. LOVE IT!

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Kris November 23, 2011 at 5:48 pm

that is a wonderful photo of you in Africa – makes me smile!!

this kind of realization is good, and it definitely brings perspective! I am very thankful that I seem to remember perspective often (does that mean I encounter people who make me see it? uh oh…). it is inevitable, I suppose, when you are out in public! (now I am just rambling).

thank you for this! Happy Thanksgiving to you, and safe travels! love you!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 8:01 pm

You do! and thats why I love your heart. You remind us of this each day. Ahh, my spabettie. I don’t know what I’d do without you. <3

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Rachelle November 23, 2011 at 6:07 pm

Wow Lindsay this post really resonated with me. Thank you so much for the strong reminder to be grateful. I so appreciate your outlook on life and hope that I can follow your example and be more grateful. We are very very fortunate in America.

Please travel safe my friend. I better send you a grateful picture soon so you can get it up. :)

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 8:03 pm

I think you show such gratitude each day. I am thankful for that too! Lets keep each other accountable and keep it going. xoxo

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Raina November 23, 2011 at 6:31 pm

Lindsay, I love seeing the photo of you with the children. What a great and powerful trip that must have been.

The PB must have been a lovely gift :)

Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 8:04 pm

Powerful beyond words. Its a place that is very near and dear to my heart. So good to hear from you Raina. Happy Thanksgiving!

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Kristen (inspiredbydooce) November 23, 2011 at 6:49 pm

I’m sick this week- and I’m very thankful that I have a job that gives me paid sick time and that doesn’t give me a hard time for using said sick time. I’m feeling very thankful despite feeling like total crap.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 8:07 pm

Yes, that is a good thing. Now you can rest and feel secure. I hope you get well soon friend! Maybe some “turkey noodle” soup. hehe.

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Lindsay @ Lindsay's List November 23, 2011 at 7:11 pm

Ok…two things: I’m going to send you my pic here shortly. And two: what the heck is marmite? I know I should know, HEAB’s always talks about it, but I’ve never had it.

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 8:09 pm

haha, I got HEAB to try marmite. Vegemite and Marmite are yeast extracts in a paste/spread form. My husband loves it because its a New zealand/Australian thing. Marmite is big in UK too. It definitely takes a certain kind of tastebud to like. I did not like it a first, but now i love it!
http://www.kraftbrands.com/kraftvegemite/Pages/default.aspx

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Lisa November 23, 2011 at 7:19 pm

Lovely food, and lovely thoughts as usual :)
Sounds like an amazing experience you had, and feeding the soul should never be underestimated or undervalued!
For some reason, I have a lot of clients experiencing success right now—and that is so encouraging to me! At times it feels like no one is accomplishing anything, and then I get a reminder that my hard work and passion for wellness really does pay off and help people!

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 8:08 pm

Oh that is great news Lisa. You are a hard worker and a great encouragement to them. It pays off more than you know! <3

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Lou November 23, 2011 at 7:35 pm

If I have a roof over my head, and food in my belly, I am so much better off than probably a huge percentage of this earth…. to be born into a country where we are treated with respect and allowed freedom is something that I am so so thankful for. The contrast between rich and poor around the earth is quite frightening in extremity. I love these posts that you are doing – helps put things in perspective, no? Sometimes I want to shake people that are stressing over what new pair of jeans to buy, or where to hang a picture in their house – really? Really? You are getting stressed over THAT!?! Keep it real people, keep it real and be grateful that you have legs to put jeans on, or a wall to call your own that you can hang something on :)

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LCCotter November 23, 2011 at 8:06 pm

Yes!! Shake them hard. Sometimes (okay a lot of times) I need shaking too. A good reminder for us all! Keep it real, keep it simple, share the blessings. Amen!!

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Tina @ Best Body Fitness November 23, 2011 at 8:09 pm

I was actually in TEARS (like deep sobbing tears) during my devotional reading an hour or so ago. Just thinking of God and all his many blessings. I couldn’t believe that He loves me SO much to have brough me so far from my past. I am in awe of His love. I am in awe of His grace. And in awe of what He pours out. I hope so much I can help Him to pour it out on others.

Love you and have a great Thanksgiving!

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LCCotter November 24, 2011 at 12:49 am

tears of joy! those are some very grateful tears. Hugs to you friend. <3

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Vanessa @ Gourmet Runner November 23, 2011 at 8:26 pm

Such a good reminder to be thankful for the ABUNDANCE we have. I’m feeling stressed about cooking a big 15 pound turkey tomorrow on Thanksgiving – but if that’s the extent of my problems I should be ashamed! So much to be thankful for.

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LCCotter November 24, 2011 at 12:50 am

oh no, thats a lot of work. Just put your stess aside and let the oven do the cooking. I have a feeling it will be great friend. ENJOY that blessing!

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She Rocks Fitness November 23, 2011 at 9:24 pm

I love cleaning out the cupboards, because you remember to not waste a single thing and you get creative. It’s a fun challenge, because we don’t realize how much food we do waste everyday! Happy Thanksgiving darling and SAFE TRAVELS! xoxo

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LCCotter November 24, 2011 at 12:53 am

yes!! so true! We have so much, random stuff, but so much. Glad its not going to waste!
Have a great turkey day friend.

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Sabrina @ Radioactive Runner November 23, 2011 at 10:54 pm

that’s amazing that you went to Africa on a mission. It is my DREAM to get to Africa one day.

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Sabrina @ Radioactive Runner November 23, 2011 at 10:56 pm

oops, I hit enter too soon.. but what I was going to say is “AAAHHH you guys leave SO soon”!!!

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LCCotter November 24, 2011 at 12:54 am

Oh i hope your dream comes true! You would love Africa! And yes, we leave for Dallas tomorrow and NZ FRIDAY! EEEEEKKKK!!

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Bre November 24, 2011 at 2:46 am

Oh you would love what my sister is up to this month. She went to Kenya also and is in the middle of “Headshave for Humanity” to raise money for the faminine in the horn of africa through Care Canada (www.care.ca) and meals through her Headshave for Humanity group at free rice (www.freerice.com)! In a week she shaves her head in honour of the tradition of the Masaai tribe in Africa who believe that women shave their head to signify the begginning of a change etc. Seeing your pictures from Africa reminded me of her pictures.

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LCCotter November 24, 2011 at 2:55 am

oh that is too cool! yes, i love that bre! you must post pictures, k?

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Tara November 24, 2011 at 2:59 am

I’ve always wanted to go to Africa and work with people there! It must have been such an eye opening experience. I feel like everyone needs to witness that at least one time in their life!
I’m kind of jealous that you’re cleaning out the pantry. I love to get really creative and make some interesting concoctions!

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LCCotter November 24, 2011 at 12:33 pm

I always feel like if people have a heart for africa, then they will make it there! I hope you do sweet friend. Its amazing!

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Chuck November 24, 2011 at 6:19 am

Wow, what am amazing experience Lindsay! God bless you

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LCCotter November 24, 2011 at 12:35 pm

God bless you Chuck! I hope you enjoy a day of thanksgiving with loved ones…..and maybe a good run? haha.

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Ameena November 24, 2011 at 12:25 pm

You are so inspirational Lindsay…the amazing things that you do/have done! I learn something from you every time I come by to visit your blog. So thank you for that.

And Happy Thanksgiving!

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Vien @ We Dare Food November 25, 2011 at 6:11 am

What’s that with the blueberries on ‘em? They look good! :D
and thank you for reminding me how lucky we all are:)

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LCCotter November 25, 2011 at 12:14 pm

actually its a big salad with chicken, apple, and avocado. so good!!

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Kath (My Funny Little Life) November 26, 2011 at 11:38 pm

It’s crazy how easily and how many things we take for granted. Most people will never know because they always keep their usual perspective. I’m happy you made this traveling experience and looked at it from the outside!

Hope you’ve had a blissful Thanksgiving! :)

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Molly May 15, 2012 at 11:43 pm

Wonderful post. I have also been blessed with the opportunity to go to Africa and it changed my life and perspective. Thank you for renewing in me the attitude of thankfulness!

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LCCotter May 16, 2012 at 5:38 am

oh didn’t you just love it. such a humbling yet uplifting experience. I love africa!

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Molly May 16, 2012 at 9:45 am

Me too, Im obsessed :) can’t wait to go back again!

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