Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Counting My Blessings

I'm going to start out this post by being brutally honest, y'all: I'm struggling. If you Google a list of life stressors, we hit most of the top five in one way, shape, or form. I'm not trying to win a pity contest, I"m just feeling like I'm at the end of my rope. And of this cute little internet kitty has taught me anything, now is the time to tie a knot.

There's also an adage about lighting a candle instead of cursing the darkness, so even though I'm feeling like I should be eating lots of carrots to improve my night vision, I'm going to go ahead and make myself light a candle. I really do have a lot of things to be thankful for.

1. Last night at dinner, I think the kids could tell I was stressed. They had been arguing a picking at each other on the way home and I had turned of the radio to get some quiet. At dinner, Ben accidentally spilled his lemonade all over his plate. He immediately made a face and looked like he was about to burst into tears. Almost as immediately, Frances reached across the table with her napkin and started mopping up the spill. Henry held out his cup and said, "You can have my lemonade." (It was the last of the lemonade, so that was a sacrifice. I got up to help Ben dump his plate and get a new one and miraculously no one cried!

2. The bigs have art camp this week. The camp is downtown in a place with no parking. The directors have arranged a drop off/pick up location where I don't even have to get out of my car. Compared to some of the transportation fiascos we've had with some other camps this summer, this is a huge blessing!

3. Pokemon GO is keeping me active and connected to Ken. He sends me texts during the day about things he's caught or hatched and we've been taking lots of nightly walks and just chatting. A tiny part of me thinks maybe I should be packing or folding laundry at those times, but screw that part! I need some decompression time!

4. My job had been pretty slow this summer, but things are starting to pick back up again. I'm excited about the students coming back and getting back into the swing of things. I like my routines and I like having more people to interact with. Also, I"m part of a pilot program for a new certificate series and I'm excited about the new classes and learning opportunities.

5. Sometimes when friends are hurting, it's hard to know what to say. The truth is, there's often not a lot that you can say, but good friends know how to be there anyway. I'm blessed to have a friend like that in Julie. She gave me this necklace over the weekend that says a thousand things I need to hear in such a beautiful way. I don't know what I'd do without her!

6. It's harvest season and that reminds me to be thankful for my own garden and the gardens of friends and family who share with us. I think it's also great that the kids are so excited about the garden. Henry jumps up every morning to check on the tomatoes on the front porch. And Ben is so excited he might even try one of them one of these days!!

7. There's a woman who comes in every year to laminate things for her classroom. She teaches kindergarten in a local private school. She always has such fun drawings and pictures that she's created to make her students feel at home and enhance their learning. It's so much fun chatting with her when she comes in and she's got such a great, uplifting personality. I got to see her yesterday and she told me about a new children's book she's written. I"m excited to take a look at it and see more of her personality on the page!

8. I wore my favorite dress yesterday. It's brightly colored and stretch, so it always fits. Plus it has pockets. I'd had a bit of trouble getting it sipped up in the morning so Ken had to help me. Partway through the day, I reached over to scratch my side and I poke the sipper. The doggone thing popped right open from armpit to hip! I'm thankful for a sense of humor to be able to laugh at it and also thankful for my grandmother's box of safety pins that live in my desk for a moment such as this! Always be prepared!

9. I have vacation next week! We don't have a lot of plans, but the fair is in town, so I'm sure we'll be spending time over there. My other objective is to get more packing and cleaning done. We'd like to schedule an open house in the next few weeks and hopefully with a week to really focus on the house, I'll be ready for that!

10. I woke up this morning with a roof over my head, hot water in my shower, and food in my refrigerator. It's often easy to forget that those things are luxuries to many across the world. It's good to take a moment to be thankful for all the things we often take for granted.

What are you thankful for lately?

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