Category Archives: gratitude

Reflecting On A Year Of Gratitude

I’m still searching for that perfect word for next year. Some current contenders rattling around in my brain: connect, forgive, moment, and a find your word quiz gave me “bloom.” Doubt that will be the one.

Meanwhile, even though it took a while to hit on the right word for 2019, Gratitude fit this year so well.  I thought I’d take a moment and reflect back on it month by month.


I published my first gratitude list on January on the third Tuesday of the year. Apparently, shortly after a snow storm and while J was sick.  Health is always a great thing to be thankful for in the height of cold/flu season!


Kept up very well with all the gratitude lists in February! Though it seems so long ago, the winter hit hard in February as shelter from the storm was a recurrent theme on the lists. And family. And friends.


I was still going strong on gratitude lists in March. And those gratitude lists helped ease a bit of the pain of losing my husband’s grandfather.


This was a great month filled with travel and our annual Easter brunch. I had a bit of the blahs but springtime always gratefully, let’s me beat them. A bit of hindsight gratitude here that my husband’s aunt who we lost in early October was able to come up for brunch and stay with us.


I didn’t publish as many gratitude lists this month as we were BUSY with a kid graduating high school and all the fun that brings.  One list from the month summed up the joys of springtime flowers, friendships, and family amid the chaos. And again, I’m so grateful our aunt was able to be here for G’s graduation.


This month brought us a wedding to attend (and more time spent with our aunt) and some quiet moments to just relax. And I spent a lot of time working which I loved (mostly).


Another super busy month and one where I didn’t post anything except the Happy Homemaker Mondays. However, glancing at those posts brings gratitude for busy days working, a trip to Oklahoma where we spent more bittersweet time with family while cleaning out my husband’s grandfather’s home.  And more travel to Springfield, Mo where G initially planned to go to college. Plus the joy of J performing in his first music contest and doing very well!


Again no lists but glancing back at my posts fills me with gratitude for a smooth transition into high school (and marching band!) for J. Reading lots of great books! G’s decision to stay home and attend community college to avoid debt. A smart, mature decision that I honestly struggled with a bit (I already bought the shirt for the other college! HA).


I can tell how life gets busy in the fall as my posts start to diminish in number though I did make a valiant effort to post about some crazy low-spend, low-sugar September idea. Should really do that in January but…well, maybe.  Back in September, we attended our 2nd wedding of the year and J’s first marching band competition. I remember my beloved summer weather stuck around a bit as well.


This month was a rough one.

We lost my husband’s aunt and then found out as we prepared to leave for her funeral, his grandmother passed away. I find myself focusing on my word of the year and remembering to be grateful for the time we had with them both. And time spent with all family and friends.

And that J loved the apple chip cake my mom used to make. I see it getting made again each fall. My camera also broke in October and I tried a smaller, less expensive one for a bit. Thankful, I was able to hammer out the lens of my beloved Nikon bridge camera to bring it back.


I did do a quick gratitude list this month. A Five on Friday type thing, which I evidently never published. Oops!  A blog, food, family & friends, and the weather. Oh, that’s only four. Now, I know why it didn’t get published.

This month was also a bit rough as we typically spent Thanksgiving in Oklahoma but with the loss of so much family stayed here. We spent a quiet Thanksgiving with my two of my brothers. We now have family drama/family not speaking to all of us on my side (since the beginning of the year). It’s painful but I’m thankful for the good times.


And here we are at the last day of the last month of the year. Always grateful for my health, especially this year as I turned the big 5-0. I don’t feel that. And I think that’s a good thing. The chance to spend lots of time running around with J for music stuff. A husband who worked hard all year (and while not mentioned specifically in this post was mentioned in most gratitude lists). An amazing older son who is such a peacemaker.

Finally, I was thankful for all the Happy Homemaker Mondays hosted by Sandra from Diary Of A Stay At Home Mom which gave me a reason to come to this blog during times I’d have probably ignored it all together. And for joining in with Tamy over at Chasing My Life for Blogmas (though I fizzled a bit and completely didn’t finish). Doing that kept me in the Christmas spirit during a year when the blahs threatened big time.


What things are you grateful for as you reflect on 2019? Oh, and Happy New Year!

Blessings as the Busy Season Continues

I know I’ve been only posting my Happy Homemaker Monday posts for a few weeks. However, I’ve still been taking some time to be grateful for all the small blessings during the day-to-day of this busy season. I’ve just not been writing it down in blog posts choosing to prioritize other things during my slower moments of the day.

Looking back I see I’ve not posted a gratitude list since May 2! A quiet, rainy Sunday morning seems like a good time to share one again.

  1. The vast variety of birds (and sometimes other creatures) I see in my own yard despite living in a somewhat urban area
  2. Loving my job, makes it much easier to be there a lot and deal with the very occasional bad day
  3. Friendships, both old and new, on-line and in “real” life
  4. Finding a good book on the library shelf
  5. Time spent with family
  6. A rare “yes” from J in agreeing to walk around the block with me

    wildflowers springing up on a vacant lot

  7. Pretty summer wildflowers to make a bouquet for the kitchen table 
  8. My hardworking husband
  9. G’s help in getting his brother to and from the 3 day band camp while I worked
  10. The 3 day band camp switching to a 2 day camp
  11. A surprise refund check for the minute clinic (thought for sure I’d forgotten to pay a bill)
  12. Starbucks!
  13. Our sweet little gray cat, who keeps us on our toes and sleeps on the deck chairs while the birds eat at the feeders beside her. 
  14. Quiet, rainy Sunday mornings to catch my breath and recharge
  15. A slower week (maybe?) on the horizon

I’ve had other items flit through my head during the last month, however, I didn’t stop to write them down. Stopping this post now to go fold the final (for now) basket of laundry and watch my outdoor birds.

What things are you grateful for today?


Grateful on a Thursday

Missed this post last week. There’s a draft of it written but it didn’t ever make it to the push publish button. Busy times but I’m still grateful.

Consider this a combined list….

Outside in Nature

  1. Beautiful flowers to welcome spring and summer, both the ones I bought and the surprise yellow ones 
  2. The mighty oak tree which serves as a home to all kinds of lovely birds and gives us shade in the summer. 
  3. The wonderful variety of birds I see each day: house finches, chickadees, cardinals, blue jays, woodpeckers, nuthatches, and even those annoying grackles
  4. Gorgeous sunny spring days and thunderstorms (so I don’t have to remember to water my flowers)
  5. A big chaotic backyard

Just This Morning

    1. My non-morning person son who woke up cheerful! And shared the fun video posted above with me.
    2. My husband who does the laundry when I get sidetracked and completely focused only on all things graduation
    3. Feeling like an adult while eating this for breakfast. Forgot I liked Raisin Bran! 
    4. A quiet house that no longer smells of onion (see yesterday’s post) with windows open.
    5. A few minutes to write a post on my gratitude (Another name for a few minutes might be procrastination….)

And A Few Random Items (Some Carried Over From My Unpublished Post)

  1. The lovely scent of these candles. The one on the left, a gift for teacher appreciation. So let’s add in here being appreciated as a substitute teacher! And the one on the right, a birthday gift from J, saved it until summer as it’s a beach type scent. 
  2. Finding candy with *blue* wrappers that was not disgusting and on sale! 
  3. My messy kitchen table with life in progress
  4. Making new friends in the course of planning an ending to our kids’ high school days
  5. Old friends who text you important papers containing graduation information (because they are still kids….what paper? I gave it to you! Um, no…you did not. SIGH)
  6. Technology! I’m not always a fan of the cell phones but they do provide a nice quick communication tool.
  7. Knowing myself well enough to not get too upset over failed eating plans. Realizing a super stressful 2 weeks before graduation may not have been the ideal time to try completely changing my eating habits.


What things are you grateful for today?

Linking up to I Like Thursdays hosted by LeeAnna over at Not Afraid Of Color. Go check it out!


Gratitude In The Midst Of A Busy Season

It’s a busy season over here.  Lots of graduation prep underway for my oldest, band concerts a week apart, and of course, all the regular running of the household and work. Oh, did I mention it’s birthday month for my oldest as well?

So much good stuff and yet still, all a little stressful. Gladly, taking a minute to share my likes and gratitude for this week.

Gratitude For A Full Calendar

The bottom of my May pocket calendar

  1. Invitations to exciting and happy events. After losing loved ones in the past few years, it’s always a welcome thing to go to events celebrating happy things like graduation parties and wedding showers. 
  2. A chance to go see my great nieces dance on Saturday morning
  3. A bit of a slower work schedule
  4. The happy problem of having more family wanting to attend G’s graduation than our allotted ticket number. (If anyone knows how to make 11 = 20, let me in on the secret. And soon!). Having lots of people to love your kids is never a bad thing.
  5. My stock of Forever stamps
  6. The Cozi calendar app on my computer and phone. I know I sound like an ad  but I really do find this app so helpful with keeping track of everything. Helpful enough I pay for it but I used the free version for a long time.

Random Bits Of Gratitude

  1. Nicer weather! I don’t mind the rain if it’s above 50 degrees. It’s painted things a lovely shade of green (my favorite color!) around here. 
  2. Cozy candles in the house. My current spring scents are Lilac and Wild Violet.  
  3. Feeling healthy and having energy for all the exciting events.
  4. Time to enjoy a good breakfast (I’m trying what I’ve deemed an “off brand” 21 Day Fix. Basically, I just bought the containers and figured the count on my own. So far, it’s lots of good food and I like it. Remembering I like vegetables (spinach in my eggs!).
  5. A nice, long talk about almost everything with my oldest son on Tuesday night.
  6. One final silly bit of gratitude: Not coming across any spoilers for Avengers: Endgame. Hoping to go see it soon.


What are you grateful for this week?  Don’t forget to go visit Not Afraid Of Color for a dose of positive from LeeAnna and all the other bloggers linked up over there.


I Like Beating The Blahs

Once our out-of-town company left on Monday, I relaxed a bit. And then, had a chance to get together with a friend to talk about a graduation party we’re planning for our sons.

Tuesday and yesterday left me with a bit of the blahs. I think a fair amount might have been the weather. We went from sunny and beautiful on Easter to cold and cloudy for the next 3 days. Today the sun’s back out and my mood is much better.

Unfortunately, with a good case of the blahs, I avoided my laundry list of to-do items (though I did do a tiny bit of actual laundry!). Lots to try to accomplish before I run off to work.

My After Easter Gratitude List

  1. Blue, sunny skies!
  2. Birds singing
  3. Flowers Blooming

    My purple tulips on the edge of the area I’m in the process of turning into a wild flower garden

    Washington, D.C. tulips are prettier but there’s still no place like home

  4. That our aunt didn’t suffer more serious injuries when she fell in our bathroom late Friday evening. She broke her wrist and severely bruised her knee to the point she couldn’t walk.
  5. Our health and mobility! We rented her a wheelchair. So blessed with good health in this house.
  6. Our aunt going home on Monday (with help from my sister-in-law and her husband). We all want to be at home when we are feeling under the weather or hurt don’t we?
  7. My hard-working husband who went from the weekend excitement to working 12 hour days without complaining
  8. All the family who loves us and wants to attend G’s high school graduation. It makes dividing up 11 tickets a bit of a challenge though.
  9. Good friends who listen to our woes
  10. Chocolate (It’s the week after Easter, needs to be on the list!)


Cutting it a bit short today so I can spend some time tackling a few important to-do list items like playing the bills. And perhaps a bit more house cleaning. I’m working on clearing out the negative energy from our home (I know it sounds a little hippy but it’s making me feel better).

What’s on your gratitude list today?

*Be sure to go check out all the positivity over at Not Afraid Of Color where LeeAnna hosts the I Like Thursdays.


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