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  • Guest Author: Sharnessa Sanden

Sharnessa's Daily Graces

Today I bring you a treat! In early 2016, our oldest daughter, Sharnessa, posted a series of what she called "Daily Graces" on Facebook. Several of these posts were simple and sweet, like flowers that her hubby, Sam, had arranged to have a friend take to her when he was thousands of miles away in Africa on a mission trip.

Yeah ~ this handsome Swedish-American guy here... (who you'll be hearing more about herein!)

The Sanden family with Mothers Day blessing / Sharnessa's Daily Graces /

(Sam created this poster-picture for her.)

Some of her other "Daily Grace" posts were her own sweet musings about life, and others were about some not-so-pretty, kinda-hard stuff that I'm sure we can all relate to.

Sharnessa has a way of seeing all of life in a way that inspires and gives hope and joy.

You'll be getting samplings of "all the above" herein!

So, remember, from here to the end it is now Sharnessa talking; not me ~ other than a few comments that I have colored purple.




Sharnessa's shabby and beloved couches / Sharnessa's Daily Graces /

We bought these buddies brand-spanking-new at City Liquidators in Portland, Oregon shortly after moving here from the UK fourteenish years ago, and they have some serious "war wounds" on every single arm rest and every side of every cushion.

Trust me, we've flipped those suckers every way possible to keep them looking decent, but they're so very far beyond that point, now!

They have everything from stains, to holes, to simply worn-down and literally shredded surfaces.

And while I'm about ready for some new ones and am fine with the idea of my living room no longer looking like we had a psychotic cat on the loose in here, I do try to take in the beauty of what these worn-down old couches actually represent.

Every one of the threads on these couches that has been worn away means it has been USED, and LIFE has taken place here!

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I think about all the lives in our home over the years that these almost-comical marks and tears represent ~ all the times they've been sat or slept on during bachelorette parties, sleeping by the tree on Christmas Eve, birthday parties, restless nights with littles, Sunday naps, home groups, counseling sessions, cell group meetings with our youth, reading books, bazillions of cuddles, dreaming and visioneering sessions, planning sessions, homeschool reading time, tea and coffee dates, hard talks with many tears shed, quiet moments with many tears shed, tons of laughter, sleepovers, amazing announcements, bridal showers, baby showers, staff meetings, studio events, recital prep, heartaches shared, adventures and passions and dreams shared, precious and priceless moments, new babies held for the first time, deep talks, visits with fam and friends ~ new and old and near and far ~ holidays, quiet times with Jesus. I could literally go on and on but I think you get the idea.

I do still get on Craigslist sometimes to look for "the" next couches for us before a small child goes missing in one of those holes. (Feel free to zoom in to see just how fantastic and legit they are!) But at the same time...

I remember how crazy-blessed I am to even have couches, as well as a house to put them in!

And here are Sharn's fun hashtags that say a little more: (which I have split into separate words so you can understand them more easily ~ or at least so we oldsters can!)

#not kidding about the holes

#the big in the little

#holey couches batman

#its all grace

#dont be jealous

#my couches have more

character than your couches

#furniture with character

P.S. I'm happy to announce

that, since the writing of the

above, the Sandens have

gotten new couches!




Butter with crumbs in it / Sharnessa's Daily Graces /

I had a super hard time deciding what my grateful-post was going to be today as, honestly, there's a whole lotta goodness out there that I want to give props to today. But... I'm going with the first thing that popped in my brain this morning, which was... bread crumbs in the butter dish.

And I was the guilty crumb-bestower this time.

As I buttered my toast and committed the crime, my initial response was to take the knife and clean the crumbs out, when I stopped myself, chuckled, and decided to leave them for the moment and see the things to be grateful for in this silly little moment knocking on my hearts' door. 😊

Crumbs in the butter dish mean...

A) I have bread to eat.

B) I have a bread machine, which means that I get FRESH bread to eat when I want it.

C) I can afford bread and butter to go on said bread.

D) I don't have wheat or milk allergies, which means I can enjoy both.

E) I have a family to make toast and sandwiches for, and a family who can also make these things for themselves, which sometimes means said bread crumbs end up in the butter.🐄🍞💕 ‪


#‎the big in the little‬






(after he had tea,

toast, & Jesus-time)

Tea rings on table / Sharnessa's Daily Graces /

My tendency is to see something like this left on a table ~ which is one of the two places where he likes to hang out with God ~ and initially get irritated. But I am trying to catch said stupid irritation and nip it in the bud, and instead see it for what it is, and see the total beauty in it. Which is...

...that I have an amazing husband who continually prioritizes time with Jesus. What a blessing the fruit of that time is to not only him, but to me as his wife, to our sons, our family and friends, our church and our community, and all who he pours his life into.

So THAT is what I want to ~ and am trying to ~ see right off the bat in tea rings and toast crumbs.

#love my hubbys

heart for Jesus

#thanks for Your grace

for my lameness Jesus

#his first Love

#grateful for amazing grace






Sharnessa with her beloved Brooke, yellow daisies, Chase / Sharnessa's Daily Graces /

I, "Mom" (Barb) want to introduce this last multi-daily-grace by explaining that these next few stories came in the midst of an extremely busy and heavy-laden time for Sharnessa.

Her hubby Sam ~ who's the associate pastor at our church and, as such, is in charge of missions and outreaches ~ was in the middle of a two-week mission trip to Uganda, followed by another week in his homeland of Sweden, since he was that far around the globe anyway.

On top of that, the recital of their Fresh Attitude Dance Studio was coming up within just a couple of weeks, and Sharnessa was having to get teachers and classes prepared for that ~ in the midst of a toilet breaking at the studio (which my hubby ~ her dad ~ took care of) and many other things happening.

Sharnessa is one of the strongest, most gracious and capable women I know, so, without this intro, it might appear that she is kind of a needy wimp. But anyone who knows her ~ even just a little bit ~ knows that that is FAR from the truth!!!!


Fresh flowers and a latte - two of my fave things - plus hot cocoa for my lads, all of which were surprise-delivered by one of my favorite peeps in the whole wide world ~ Brooke! Sigh... I'm super grateful for this amazing girl and her precious heart to brighten my day!! Not only did my heart well up, so did my eyeballs! 😂💗 I love this beautiful girl to the moon and back!

😙💕💞💕💞 🍕💕 Sheesh. Feeling crazy-blessed right now. I love God's extravagant love for us ~ not just to kinda-sorta bless us when our faint hearts need it, but like ~ above and beyond!

And about a week later, Sharnessa wrote...

The night before last was a bit of a toughy. I was just overwhelmed with various odds 'n' ends and not in the greatest place mentally or emotionally while working on the recital finale with some of my teachers. I just felt stuck in my yuck.

But after my co-choreographers sweetly helped encourage through said tough time, my little sis, Carlianne, invited herself over afterward for some sister hang-out time and brought sundaes to boot.🍧💕

(We didn't get a pic of the sundae scene, but here's one of Carlianne and me doing a "drama pose" a few weeks before ~ with our look-alike hair.)

Carlianne & Sharnessa cool-posing / Sharnessa's Daily Graces /

And then the following morning, my heart-sister, Vola, showed up with a Red Leaf latte in hand "just because." ☕️💕 That's me with the latte ~ aka "sanity and delight" ~ from sweet Vola.

That dark blur beneath my hand is my blur-of-a-son, my Classic Weston!! That kid is already a mover and a shaker!!

Sharnessa holding a coffee someone brought her / Sharnessa's Daily Graces /

Not too long after that, another heart-sis, Mel, texted and offered to come over with pizza and to chill together. Which we did over housework and some Little House on the Prairie, of course!!

Kids playing in their family room, watching Little House / Sharnessa's Daily Graces /

Thank you, girls (and others who have been a sweet blessing to me and my boys with Hubby away!) for being "Jesus with skin on." 💕 It matters!! 😊

Remember even the most seemingly simple, normal, daily-life acts of kindness can be ~ and methinks usually are ~ partnering with God to alter the course of someone's day. Don't underestimate it!! ‪

‪#‎my heart is full

#‎full heart full life‬

‪#‎sunshine in a mason jar‬ ‪

#‎heart family‬

#‎pay it forward‬

#‎so grateful for my village

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