Once upon a time, when I felt like my life was crashing down around me, I would fall apart. I didn't know how to handle the little things in life much less the big things. It took me quite some time (years) to get to the point where I didn't crack at every roadblock. But getting there and staying there are two vastly different things.
Most recently, when I was getting a bit stressed, someone reminded me to take the time to be grateful every day. I used to do that, and it did help. So a month ago, I started writing three things I was thankful for that day. And, once again, it's been a blessing.
Sometimes, if it was a particularly trying day, I might write that I was thankful for the comfort of my home where I could shut out the world if I needed to. Or that someone had paid me a compliment. And, one day, when I was struggling to get anything accomplished, my end of the day list included that I had gotten my new modem set up. And it made a difference. On a day where I felt like nothing was getting done, I proved that something had gotten done. No matter how small.
Being grateful for the little things makes me more appreciative of everything in my life. As crazy as it may sound, I can even be thankful I didn't break a bone when I fell. So it's a different way of looking at the times in my life that aren't the best. And I'm thankful that I was reminded to resume this habit.
Day 30—Comfortable Shoes
With all the Christmas shopping and visiting I'll be doing over the next month, today, I am so grateful for comfortable shoes!
I have had four surgeries on one foot, and it took quite a while for me to find a pair that did not bother the scars. Once I did, I stuck to that brand. Your feet take a lot of abuse so it's important to treat them well. If only I'd learned that sooner...
Today is the last day of my 30 days of gratitude. I hope you've enjoyed this past month! Stay tuned for another thirty days around the corner!
Today, I'm grateful for pets, well, one. My cat, Temperance. I call her Tempee, and yes, she is named after the main character Dr. Temperance Brennan from the television show Bones.
Years ago, after my last cat died, I swore I would never have another animal, but in 2013, something drew me to the animal shelter. I went in to just look at the cats, but when the volunteer took Tempee out of her cage, and her little head flopped on my shoulder, I knew I was a goner. She came home with me that day. I haven't regretted one day since adopting her.
She loves to sleep next to me, comes when I call her, and bumps her head against my hand when she wants to be scratched. She kisses me goodnight by licking my cheek, meows at me when she wants my attention, and stands on her back paws to attempt to turn a door knob when she's locked out of a room. Overall, she makes my life better.
Day 28—Small Businesses
Today is Small Business Saturday, a day when local business try to draw shoppers into their smaller stores for Christmas purchases. And because I'm grateful for each small business that struggles to keep its head afloat in the face of the retail giants, I always make it a point to go shopping on Small Business Saturday. Those businesses count on customers like me to prevent them from being overtaken by vast commercialism. It might not be much, but I will always do my part to help those trying to support themselves!
Outside my window, I can hear slamming car doors and excited people returning from a marathon shopping spree. They're carrying their purchases into the house while I sit here reading a book. And while I'm sure my neighbors got some good deals, I know that I spent a relaxing day falling in love with my favorite book here again. I didn't fight traffic or stand in long lines to make a purchase because we still have over a month until Christmas. There's plenty of time to shop, and I know retailers will come up with even more deals to entice shoppers. So, today, I took the chance to do nothing, and I'm grateful.
Today, I'm grateful for Thanksgiving and not just because of the food or the time I get to spend with family and friends. I'm grateful for the chance to consider everything I'm thankful for. We don't dwell on our blessings enough, and Thanksgiving gives me that one day that's all about gratitude. So all throughout the day, I'm reminded that I have so many reasons to be glad for my life and those in it.
Notice I didn't say I'm grateful that I get to cook? That would be dishonest. I don't like cooking. In fact, I will avoid it at any costs, but I am grateful that I learned how to cook. Much of the time, it's cheaper to cook than it is to eat out. So I did a lot of cooking during my college days. With Thanksgiving tomorrow, I'll be cooking this evening as well, and I'm glad that I can bring something to our gathering, even though my family knows they only receive a cooked dish from me twice a year. (Thanksgiving and Christmas) Still, it's a skill I'm glad I learned, and who knows? There may even come a day when I enjoy it! But I'm not holding my breath!
Day 24—Long Conversations
Last night, a long distance friend and I spent close to three hours on the phone, talking about anything and everything. I cleaned house while we talked, and she cooked and baked, our conversation a natural accompaniment. We live almost four hours away from one another, and our conversations are always epic in length, but this was one of our longest. What was one of the greatest things about it is we never ran out of things to talk about. There were no long pauses because we were too busy sharing bits and pieces of our lives that the other one wasn't present for.
Today, I'm grateful for long conversations because they allow me to reconnect with people I don't get to see every day. They allow me to maintain one foot in the lives of those who are far away.
Day 23—Life Lessons
A friend of mine says there's nothing like a lesson you buy and pay for yourself. It's her way of saying you learn more from lessons that cost you, and I couldn't agree more. As much as I adore the teachers in my life, there have been times when they could not have taught me what a choice I made did.
You know, like when you go on a shopping spree simply because you feel like shopping and the next morning, your car won't start and suddenly you're having to scramble for the money to get it fixed? I call that a life lesson. Or when I don't bother to put my reading glasses on because I'm sure that the recipe called for a tablespoon of cayenne pepper and not a teaspoon. Yep. Life lesson. And I won't make that mistake again. That's why I'm grateful for life lessons today.
I often wish I could go back in time, to see
how people lived in the 1800 and 1900s.
I'd love to ride in a horse-drawn carriage
through the dusty streets on my way to
a one-room church. And don't even get
me started on the 1920s! I love that era.
All of this said, I would only want to visit
not stay because I know I'd miss the
wonders of this world too much.
Technology has changed our world, and though it might not all be for the best, there is more than enough good to make up for the bad, in my opinion. People that lived centuries ago lived hard lives with the realities of their time period. Today, I get to read the research sites on my laptop while listening to music and waiting for a call on my cell phone. I don't have to wait for information as it's at my fingertips. I can store thousands of books on my Kindle and take just as many photos on my phone. And that's why, today, I'm grateful for technology!
My thoughts, experiences, challenges, and goals. Right here. At least once a week or so. Oh, and opinions, too. Those will definitely come in. Join me!