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Celebrating International Women’s Day

Hello!!!

As you probably (definitely) know, last Tuesday was International Women’s Day!!! What an incredible thing to celebrate, eh? Being surrounded by the people in my community and having the opportunities that I’ve had, I like to believe every day is International Women’s Day. I’ve been raised supported, and I was given the tools to stay strong against any obstacle or through any hoops. So, I was inspired by this beautiful holiday to write a gratitude blog post for and about some of the incredible women in my life who helped raise me and every day help to shape me into a strong, independent woman.

Great-Grandma Amanda

Okay, this one is going to be short and sweet, because I don’t want to start out getting incredibly emotional, but I love this woman with every fiber of my being. My great-grandmother was probably the strongest woman I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing. She worked hard every single day of her life. She solely supported and raised six kids for the majority of their lives. She taught my grandmother to be strong and my mother and myself. I didn’t fully appreciate everything she went through until much more recently in my life, but every day I think of her and all of the crazy things she overcame in her near-century of life, and she teaches me to be strong and persevere just as she did.

When I was very young, my grandma taught me how to knit. I remember sitting with her in the living room, tongue sticking out in concentration while I wrapped that pea-soup-green yarn over those bamboo needles. Not only did she teach me her passion, which is now one of my favorite hobbies, but she taught me discipline. That day, she taught me that hard work can really pay off in creating beautiful things. She taught me to channel my creativity into art and that it’s wonderful to take pride in it. I took so many amazing life skills from that one, sunny Oregon day that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. I love and miss you, grandma. Thank you for everything.

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My Grandmas

These women have always provided such an inspiration for me. All of them worked incredibly hard with full-time careers while raising amazing children. And then, as grandparents, they have all been incredibly nurturing and encouraging every step of the way. I was blessed to be born into the arms of three beautiful grandmothers who hold my hands through every endeavor and crazy scheme I come up with. All of them encourage me to pursue my dreams. They came to my plays and cheered me on, hugging me in congratulations after the curtain fell. Thank you three for all of your continuous love and support! And thanks for helping to shape my mom and dad into the amazing people they are!!!

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My Aunts

Growing up with a huge, close family was like having a million moms (or big sisters, depending on age differences!). My wonderful, beautiful aunts definitely helped shape me as a young woman, providing the motherly love and affection without having to discipline me at my worst. hehe! To this day, I consider my aunts to be some of my best friends, and I know if I ever need anything, I can go to any of these strong, beautiful women for guidance. All of them are successful, hardworking individuals who have pursued their dreams. They’re happy and talented and wonderful and just a great inspiration! I love you all so so much! Thank you! (And thanks to the couple of you who aren’t pictured! Love you so much!)

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My Cousins

These young beauties have so much going for them. They’re hardworking and creative, with so much to offer the world. They inspire me to follow in their dedicated footsteps. They have so many fantastic opinions about the world, and such open and caring hearts. I can’t wait to see what other amazing things they have to offer. They are amazing, talented artists with incredible zest for life, and they are all going to change the world someday, I know it! (And also, Quinn who isn’t pictured! She’s going to do great things!)

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My Besties

Okay, here’s another one where I’m going to get super emosh. These girls, my girls, have built me so much into the woman I am today. Whether or not they realize it, I look up to them so much. I honestly don’t know what I’d do without all of their love and support. I can’t go into it, because I will be a blubbering mess, but I love you girls so, so much. You are the stars to my moon and the Fellowship to my Ring. The Lenny to my Babe, my Columbia, my Lettuce to her Bess Fran, my Aubz, the Louis to my Harry. I love you girls, never change okay? Or I’ll beat you up.

My Mom

Best for last, this woman is my rock. If I didn’t talk to my mom every single day (sometimes ten times a day), I would go insane. She talks me down from my panic attacks and also my high-horse. She keeps me grounded, but convinces me I’m invincible. She pushes me hard, but pulls me forward. She is a constant inspiration, and I’m so glad to have such an incredible, beautiful, creative, caring, nurturing, and sophisticated woman as my biggest role model in life. Thank you for growing with me and helping me as I stumble through life. You’re the very best friend a girl could ever ask for, and you’re the strongest woman in my life. I love you to the moon and back.

Well, that was incredibly emotional for me. I just can’t believe how blessed I am to have such fabulous people carrying me through life. I love you all more than anything, and thank you so much for your constant love and support.

I also want to give a huge shoutout to the other strong women in my life! All of the Blue Creek gals, Altana ladies, Franny babes, my BST and Venture family, The Youngs (including Amber and Kim!), Tammie, and the Slaugh girls!!! Thank you so much for all of your love and support!!! I love you all more than words can express!!!

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Also, some of these incredible women are pursuing amazing endeavors that I’d love for you to check out and support!

-My cousin, Crystal, has an amazing lifestyle blog with so many tips and tricks I love to live by. Go check out Creative Spiritual Women and become inspired!

-My best friend, Bobbi, runs a quirky and fun YouTube channel that speaks to my soul on so much levels! Go check out The Geeky Girl’s Guide to Living a Creative Life and have a blast with your inner-nerd!

-My best friend, Jackie, owns a wonderful baking blog full of her own, pop-culture inspired recipes! Check out Baking Encounter and be prepared to drool and chuckle over her impeccable use of GIFs!

-My mom, Deedee, writes daily “musings” to channel her daydreams! Her creative writing skills have 100% inspired me to keep up with my own fiction works! Check out her musings to be whisked away into her stories!

Who are some amazing women that inspire you? Please leave me a comment below!

Love,

Amanda Jean

2 Comments

  • Marie

    March 14, 2016 at 3:57 pm

    Oh good grief Amanda, you had me at “Hello!” But seriously, I choked up multiple times, because so many of these women have inspired and supported me too. I am so thankful. YOU, my beautiful, creative, talented niece are amazing, and I am grateful for you too! Keep doing what your doing! Love you!

    Reply
  • Joan Iverson

    March 14, 2016 at 4:09 pm

    Wow Amanda!! You write so beautifully and with such emotion…..love it. What a loving tribute to all the amazing women in your life! I miss seeing your sweet mama ….she is an inspiration and her smiling face made my days at Blue Creek so much more fun!! Keep writing….

    Reply

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