Stefanie: "Writing Is What I Love"
Stefanie with the first issue of the "Guest House Grapevine"

NOV. 18, 2013 ... “Welcome readers to your first residential newsletter made by the community for the community.” With those words, Stefanie debuted the Guest House Grapevine. Stefanie is a Residential Program client, currently living at the Guest House; and Guest House clients are the newsletter’s “community.”

“Writing is what I love,” she continued, “it is the most intimate of expressions I can contribute to my community. It has always been my dream; now I am living it.” Shortly after arriving at Guest House, Stefanie proposed her newsletter idea to her case manager, who in turn “was immediately on board.” This month, November 2013, the first Grapevine issue was printed.

Take a moment to read her “welcome statement.” It is a Thanksgiving message for everyone:

While pondering ideas for themes I thought it fitting to write, this month, about gratitude. After all it is the month we celebrate Thanksgiving.

Gratitude? Wow, what an amazing notion. When I am truly grateful I am filled with emotion that almost seems tangible. Einstein was said to repeat “thank you” multiple, sometimes hundreds, times a day. When I ask myself what I am grateful for I know this list can be endless. Losing everything certainly opened my eyes to what I have now. Essentially I lived blindly unaware of how precious the seemingly small things are. You see friends, there really aren’t any small things. Everything matters and the small things for me became the large things. For instance, the smell of my mother and father’s house, my son’s crooked grin, and my daughter’s beautiful, questioning soul. I lost sight of how profoundly special these things are. Ultimately the life changing day came when the door slammed and I found myself locked away from everything. And so those things became the things I so desperately ached for in my three and a half years.

I try to look up every morning and celebrate gratitude for waking up, for being sober, for the ladies here, for smiles, for laughter, music, silence, dreams, hopes, Gingko trees, paper, pens, football games, and even spaghetti. I am grateful too for the Guest House, this wonderful sanctuary where I lay my head each night. I give thanks that while at the crossroads of my life they were here as if to say “YOU ARE NOT THAT WHICH YOU HAVE BEEN”. They expected only my honesty, open mindedness and willingness. With these things I’ll venture correctly.

I hope we all can count the multitude of blessings that exist in our daily life. Together let us seize every day and opportunity ... a lifetime awaits.

Carpe Diem (Latin - Seize the Day)





Friends of Guest House
One East Luray Avenue
Alexandria, VA 22301-2025
{p} 703-549-8072
{f} 703-549-8073

Friends of Guest House helps female ex-offenders in Northern Virginia make the difficult transition from incarceration back into the community.

Friends of Guest House, Inc., is a 501(c)(3) public charity: Federal tax ID #51-0201327. Gifts to Guest House are tax-deductible as provided by law.

for eNews:  

      YouTube  GH

                                    blog  Razoo

CONTACT US | FOR CLIENTS | Privacy Statement

©2009-2015, Friends of Guest House. All rights reserved. Web design by Wéyo.