Happy Birthday to ME! On #scarfweek and being 31

Yesterday was my birthday. (Saturday was my party but yesterday was my birthday).

I feel like 30 was a big year for me. I got a tattoo. One that had come to me sort of slowly, and I think I love it now even more than I did at first. I blogged about some seriously personal things and I think I like it that way. I got a major speaking gig. I dropped an ebook. I made a fancy video with an intro song and everything (That last part was mostly thanks to two awesome friends, but I stood in front of the camera and ran my mouth.) I found out I am really good at helping other people sort out their dreams a little bit. I like that last thing a whole lot. I embraced my love of the rally.

But mostly, I finally gave myself permission to love the things I love, to want the things I want. I stopped believing the lie that had snuck in about how my desires are inherently selfish, how it is stupid to want to speak in front of people, or write books, or like bold lipstick. I just like bright colors. I just like the way it makes me feel. I just want to use my words to make people think about how much they are loved, and the lies that we believe and what that might mean for the world. I started finally to believe that God made me loud and bold and bleeding heart on purpose.

My friend Jamie calls it practicing your you-ish-ness. Before a retreat this summer, we were asked, what did each of us need. Jamie’s heart is so beautiful, and what she told us we all needed, was for us to be fully and wholly ourselves. For each of us to fully practice our you-ish-ness.

I started playing with that term. You-ish-ness. What if we all were practicing yous? What if we didn’t have to get it right all the time. Being authentically you is hard, you know? What if we were just practicing? Trying to get it right? Trying it out? What if we became you-ish?

If I have learned anything this year, it is that God made me, me completely on purpose. That I am wholly and deeply loved because of who I am, not in spite of it. And that is true for you too.

So, in the spirit of Birthday week, and unashamedly loving what we love, I give you the second annual scarf week! Where we wear a scarf every day because we want to! Because there is nothing cozier, and sometimes bright, and we just plain like it. Snap a picture, use the hashtag #scarfweek. Tag me on Facebook, and Twitter (@accidentaldevo), and Instagram (@accidentaldevotional).

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Sunday and Monday #scarfweek

As an added super awesome Birthday Bonus I am giving away a scarf Grace Wear Collection contacted me about being an affiliate*. I took a look and love their stuff! (Sometimes christian accessories can be less than stylish, you know?) They sent me this scarf and this necklace. I had to get used to the necklace, because it was a little outside my comfort zone, but my students convinced me that it was totally hip, and now I throw it on and feel very put together in my solid t-shirt and jeans headed to the post office. But, unsurprisingly my heart belongs to the turquoise and purple scarf. I love it, and it loves me. It just make me feel….you-ish, you know?

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Grace Wear Collection has offered to let me give away a scarf in the colors of your choice! So in the comments, tell me about you. Tell me something you love, tell me something you dream of, tell me something that makes you just exactly you. And go to Grace Wear Collection and dream of the color combination you love most.

*I am an affiliate, so that means when you click the link, if you buy something I get a percentage.

24 thoughts on “Happy Birthday to ME! On #scarfweek and being 31

  1. I love this post Abby. Mostly because I’m learning my me ish ness and what that means. Not just on the outside but inner as well.
    I’m still dreaming of publishing a book of poetry. It’s coming around. I want to know and believe that my words matter.

  2. Hey… Thanks for sharing with us. I’m a wife and mom. Course I’m an adopted mom to my 130 plus students. The one thing I think they’d tell you about me is that I practice my you-ish-ness when I teach. I’m kind of quirky in my presentation and have no problem with letting the mom in me take the lead when necessary. Still, I have yet to accept for myself… That my you-ish-ness is a good thing. I’m highly critical of myself and am thankful that I have folks around me to let me know me being me is OK!

  3. I love that purple and turquoise scarf. I would love to join you this week but I think I only have one scarf that would actually work. I have a couple from long ago that are very short so you can’t do much with them. A dream I have is to make my home a place for people to come and relax and just be themselves. Something I love is spending time with friends and making new ones. What makes me exactly me? Hmm Well, God created only one “me” so that makes me unique.

  4. I’m a wife and mama and graduate student, and it’s a lot of work being those things. I’m very excited about scarf week (every week is scarf week in my life) because I’m not a fan of paying all my money to the gas company, and it’s quite chilly in my house.

  5. I love encouraging other mamas to laugh at the end of the day. Each day is hard with the wee beasts and I think you can choose whether to let that day’s misadventures make you cry or laugh. Let’s laugh! And wear fun scarves!

  6. I’m excited for 70+ degree temps today which has delayed my solidarity in #scarfweek (#scarfidarity?). I love hot weather, I dream of getting the last of my loose ends trimmed away, and I’m most me when I’m dressed in bright colors, laughing, and talking to recent strangers that are now getting to know me. I love that I am a connector of ideas and people and never want that to stop.

    Also, #scarfidarity is real now.

  7. I love reading your posts, and I feel like I relate to you on so many levels! My students may never “get” you-ish-ness, but when I talk to them about being vulnerable and not feeling ashamed, something changes inside them. It makes my job more than a job; it makes me who I am, and my greatest desire is that my students will know that they are enough! Thank you for your encouragement and for being YOU! You are enough… : ) Keep stretching your wings, and always know that you are hip because your students love and respect you! You could wear a bird on your shoulder, and they wouldn’t flinch. They may just talk about you when they are teaching 10 years later and say, “I once had a teacher that taught me how to be “you-ish”, and that is why I’m teaching you this lesson. Keep throwing rocks… the ripples will continue to touch lives. Mine being the first…

  8. hey! thanks for tweeting back. Just discovered your blog. I’m a children’s librarian/learning to be a beauty consultant/which means owning my own business while working f/t. I love the pink and orange scarf. I have a scarf given to me by a friend and when I wear it, I feel like she is with me. Love your blog.

  9. If being you-ish means becoming the person God indents me to be so that he can use me more completely, then I think it sounds very exciting.

  10. The youishness makes me think of Dr. Seuss, and I love that.
    So happy for the second annual #scarfweek!
    I’ll tell you that I often dress to remind me of a meal (like a taco salad) or a leaf.
    I love red shoes and high heels (sometimes together).
    I will always talk until I can’t anymore with people I love.

  11. I was thinking about this the other day, trying to determine what makes me “me.” Because I think it’s far more than my chaotic hair, loudly inappropriate laughter, and my tight hip flexors. Or is it? Is my “you-ish-ness” just what people identify me as from my appearance and their interactions with me? Or is it fundamentally deeper? Do I even get to determine my “you-ish-ness?” Or is it simply what others perceive? So. Many. Questions.

  12. I love fresh cut flowers on my table. I dream of being a homeowner with space for hospitality. I love to laugh and get other people to laugh, especially my kids. Hooray for beautiful scarves!

  13. My hubby and I are working toward our dream. We are hoping and planning to move our family out west to start a small scale diversified farm. Our dream is to have our farm be our sole income someday!

  14. What’s me-ish? Being excited about learning new things. Like, wearing scarves. As a child, I hated anything on my neck, including turtlenecks and especially scarves. Then one day as an adult, tried something new, and I can’t stop wearing them! #scarfidarity, indeed.

  15. Abby, I love that your enjoying scarf week. I’d join you but I have out grown all my scarfs, at least the silk ones. Besides if your Mom’s not around I can’t coordinate my pants and shirt with my socks and I only own black or white socks. Have a great week. I already bought your kindle book and can’t wait to see the Ted Talk. I got a chrome caster so we can watch it on the TV. Have a great rest of the week.

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