It’s too easy to spend the end of December, or beginning of January, thinking how I want to change things, do things differently, write a resolution list. I’ll take a cue from Shawna at the simpleonpurpose.ca blog and remind myself what I am grateful for instead. 18 things even…
1. Nature out my back door. I have a fascination with trees. And girlfriend, I got me some trees in these mountains. I’m thankful for the snowglobe flakes falling — who shook my little world? Almost three feet the last few weeks. The longer I live here, the more I commune outdoors, I learn that respite should be taken inside, but life should be lived outside.
2. My kiddos. Okay, too predictable, so I’ll expand. I’m thankful for the strong one; she’s enabled me to stand stronger. I’m thankful for the nurturing one; she doesn’t even know she does it. I’m thankful for the sassy one; she reminds me I’m not as smart as I think I am. I’m thankful for the strong, silent one; so young, yet so wise. And for each of these kiddos, now matter how they evolve, or what the stories of their lives may be, I am grateful.
3. Butter, and other stuff that comes from cows. When you can’t have it, you want it more. I’m with Julia Child, everything tastes better with butter.
4. Health issues that require change. But I’ve also learned the creamy goodness of pureed cashews and nutritional yeast, vegetarian-ish diets that actually taste just as good, or better, and make my brain happier. (Might I recommend Oh She Glows cookbook? It’s popular for a reason).
5. Gardening. Is it odd that I think the seasons just changed? (Snow entered our world just a couple weeks ago.) There are two seasons: gardening season and the waiting-to-garden season. If there’s not snow on the ground, I can find a reason to do some sort of gardening or landscaping outside. It’s the end of December now and I am just weeks away from the gardening season. No, not outside under the three foot snowdrifts. In my greenhouse.
6. Writers. I love me a good book. Have you read Emma Donaghue’s The Wonder? Okay, I love me a lot of good books. I’ve always got a half dozen on the go. Entering the minds, the worlds, of new people and new places — I can put them down and pick them up at my whim. Love it.
7. Writing. There is nothing more creative in my world. (Okay, well maybe home or garden design, or planning my kids’ educations, or cooking, cooking is definitely creative). Something I can create, fashioning with my mind and fingers, that will stay around a lot longer than I’ll be here. Writing expresses myself. Writing forces me to own myself. It clarifies my thoughts. I create my own world, and even some of my favourite people.
8. My companion, my husband. The one who walks alongside the plot of my life, who has learned every plot before he arrived, understands the themes of my life, sees me repackage the understanding of the stories in my life. He’s learned to love alongside me, receive my love and receive the clunky attempts at love, and the just plain misses too. My faithful one.
9. A community of interesting characters. The minor characters, supporting cast and antagonists too. They teach me, sharpen me, entertain me, inspire me, engage me. Each of them with a life story unlike anything I could imagine. Like travelling to a new world, minus the travel expense and effort, is listening to new people’s stories.
10. Blue. I dunno, I just really like blue. Nature’s calm.
11. And red. A splash of red. Nature’s passion.
12. Health. Surrounded by stories of unhealth, we are ever reminded that health always deteriorates, eventually, or sometimes it disappears suddenly. When you have it, you take it for granted. When you don’t, you realize it’s the biggest thing.
13. A God who sees. And who shares. And commiserates. And encourages. And requires truth in the innermost parts. And is always there. And knows the plans for us, ones to prosper us, not to harm us, ones to give us a future, and a hope. Always plants hope, grows hope, and sustains hope.
14. Grace and forgiveness. On repeat.
15. Limits. They make you thankful for what you have. The ceiling doesn’t need to by sky high to enjoy the contents in our lives. Setting our hearts to appreciate what we do have can settle us into existing contentedly within our confines. If we so choose.
16. Cozy blankets, with cozy socks, Christmas playlists and Sweet Georgia Browns (thanks Marianna!)
17. Potential. Dreams. Wishing upon stars. Prayers. Believing. Back to lucky #13.
This resolution season, what’s on your list of the Grateful Eighteen?