There have been more days in my life that I have lived in poverty.  I learned at a young age from my mother how to thrive when you just don’t have two pennies to rub together.  She would take whatever was given to her and make something beautiful.  No one knew we were the poorest family in the neighborhood. But that’s because we weren’t poor with momma. Our homes were wonderful, because she would find the joy and beauty in everything!  With 4 children, mom would split one coke, one ice cream, or one bag of M&M’s and make us feel like we were the most special kids in the world. We walked everywhere because we didn’t always have a car. So she bought a wagon and we would take turns riding in it to the park miles away.  Mom made it an adventure, and we couldn’t wait!  Most days we would eat beans and rice, toast, corn bread, or fish that someone caught.  She could take any food and make it delectable.  It was her attitude.  She came from wealth and entered into poverty unexpectedly and refused to take on a poverty mentality.

When I live the values I love, I thrive.  It’s in the simple things too.  I love starting my day in prayer.  I love a big healthy breakfast, and some-times I add olives and cheese. I love nighttime hot baths, and nonfiction that I buy at half-price book stores.  I love movies on Netflix and I love 5 mile nature walks.  I love a clean and tidy home.  I love serving my family and preparing a wonderful meal. I love spending time with my husband and having adventures, and I love spending time with each of my children. When I get to see my mom, we thrive together!  I love time with close friends over coffee.  I love my work, contributing to my family, and giving to those in need.

Are you thriving? Or are you too focused on what you don’t have? I encourage you to write down a list of what you love and what you can do on a daily basis and what you can dream and plan for.

To thrive is to have an awesome attitude!


AshliDawn Bradshaw