Today Alameda & Downing reaches an incredible milestone: 200 blog posts. It feels like just yesterday I was marking #AD100---and if you had asked me then what it might feel like to reach 200, I wouldn't have known what to say. Achieving the feat, I'm overcome with a sense of gratitude, knowing that without all of you---and a certain Secret Weapon---none of it would have ever been possible.
Daily I am reminded of how A&D’s very existence is proof of something Greater at work, whether through the pieces I post, the unfathomable outpouring of love and support received from you, the reader, or the jaw-dropping moments when “the big five” (as my Nana likes to call them) drop by or sound off on social media.
Indeed, everything that has transpired between posts 101-200---both on the blog and off---have broken the boundaries of anything I ever thought possible for this little carved out corner of the internet. None of it would have been possible without all of you, which is why I’ve chosen gratitude to be the focus of this 200th blog post.
First, to “the big five”:
Martha - I think I’m not alone in saying that I thank God for you, and your work, every day. Without it, this blog---and the deeply changed person who writes it---simply doesn’t exist. You’re doing exactly what you've been called to do in this life.
Kristin - You know you’re my girl. I couldn’t rampantly speculate for days at a time without your posts from set. You have always been, and continue to be, so exceedingly gracious, kind and fun.
Eric - Thank you for breaking your social silence as of late to not only give all of us a neat look behind the scenes, but to share and support the blog the way you have. I may or may not have burst into tears in humble gratitude on one of these occasions it was such a surprise...
Geoff - From interest-accruing tweets to the openness with which you allowed all of us to learn more about you, you’ve always been an all-around highlight around here. I’m still laughing over your From The Heart tweets...
Hopefully it won't be long before I get to deliver these thanks to you all in person!
To my crazy amazing squad:
I want to think I would pursue A&D regardless of whether or not I had an audience, but this journey would not have been half of what it has been without you all. The ranks increase daily in every way--- it’s the most exciting thing I’ve ever experienced.
Whether stateside or around the world, you’ve stood behind not only A&D, but behind me, too. I’ve often fancied myself a free-agent, boldly and confidently disconnected in such a way that I was free to go about my Father’s business, but when a few of you banded together to create the most amazing memory book in the history of memory books---received on Christmas Eve of all days (For Christmas, anyone?)--- you made the blog more than a digital space, you made it a home, a family. And, in the process, you restored something back to me that I didn't realize I was without---community.
Just the other day I got a letter from a POstable in the UK (My first international letter!) thanking me for the Mailbox Minute because it eases the pain of waiting several months for films to air on that side of the pond---bringing people together is what this is all about! Being at the center of that connection has, and continues to be, an honor and a privilege. Thank you all for allowing me that opportunity.
Few times in my life have I ever been engaged in a project that even on my worst days---when I'm so tired I can barely keep my eyes open, and attempting to think makes my head hurt---I still receive an immense amount of joy and satisfaction from doing. He always manages to help me deliver---and something tells me He'll continue to do so from 201-300, too!
Time to get back to work.