As I began contemplating this blog last night, my daughter was asleep upstairs and my husband had fallen asleep on the sofa in the family room. Snow (now falling outside) was in the forecast, putting a damper on our travel plans, but there were -- and are -- many things to be thankful for, and the two most important ones were the ones dozing in various rooms of the house.
It's nice to be part of a family that's truly disappointed when the weather interferes with our plans to get together; I'm grateful that my family looks for reasons to be together, rather than considering family occasions a chore.
Although it's an obvious time of the year to take stock of what we're thankful for, that doesn't make it any less important to do so. There are the big things, of course -- my family and friends, my (often messy, less than perfect) home, the health, safety and well-being of those I care about. But there are also small, day-to-day things that make life a little nicer and therefore deserve to be celebrated.
This year, the little things I'm thankful for include:
- the opportunity to be a published novelist. It's been a wild ride, and one I'm looking forward to getting on again, especially now that I know where the seat belts are.
- school breaks. A day away from the day-to-day is a gift. So often, I fill those days with things I need to do. Today, the snow has made sure that I don't fall into that trap. I'm a big old snow chicken when it comes to driving, so I canceled all my appointments, and got something to be really grateful for -- a peaceful day at home.
- a schedule with built-in flexibility. I need some structure in my life, and classes and office hours provide that. But, aside from those times, I have a lot of leeway to decide what I want to do when. I'm still working on finding the right balance, but I have a feeling that's a lifelong endeavor.
- sleep. The older I get, the more I both appreciate and respect the need for it. Sleep does amazing things for us, including helping us take out the mental trash. Makes me feel much less guilty when I curl up for a late afternoon nap.
- new sheets. We recently got new linens for our bed, including soft, cozy jersey (no coincided that I love them) sheets. As the weather grows colder, this wonderful, warm bedding makes it tougher to get up in the mornings (always a challenge for a night owl anyway). But they're so worth it.
- a job I love. Need I say more? Thank you again, Lori Myers, for pointing me in the right direction.
- enough. When I retired, I was afraid I was putting this in jeopardy. Leaving the party early means you miss a few things, and in my case, income was one of them. I'd like to take credit for being savvy enough (there's that word again) to make this happen, but I have no doubt that this one, like many others, is by the grace of God, because we not only have enough, we often have more than we need or deserve.
Okay, so maybe some of those things weren't so small after all. Wishing you the happiest of Thanksgivings, with blessings great and small.