Gratitude Week 2018

I’ll be posting just once as we begin our week together.  I’m sending out Gratitude Notes each day and I’ll be posting daily on Instagram, but, here, I’ll post just once.  I encourage you to leave comments and/or links to your own blog posts and/or links to Flickr shots or share on Instagram with #GratitudeWeek2018 on any day of the week! If you share your thoughts and links, we can visit and share your gratitudes with you. xo

There are many, many things to put on a gratitude list.  I find myself, as I sit to write this, wondering where to begin.  And when I find myself wondering such a thing, I know that I need to begin with right now, then flow from there.  And so here I go…

 

For the wind that gusts outside.  For the rustling leaves.  For it being just warm enough to crack the windows so that I can hear the leaves.  For the birch trees, whose leaves are the ones falling and rustling.  For trees and sky and earth.

 

For the freshly-mopped hardwood floor and the way the late afternoon sun makes it glow.  For the pup who’s stretched out upon the floor.  For the comfy couch on which I’ll sit later this evening, and for the people I love who will sit close by.  For the roof over our heads.  For the flannel sheets on our beds.  For comfort and softness and warmth.

 

For my desk where I sit to write this.  For my cameras close by.  For my journals and notebooks, filled.  For my planner, nearly filled as we move toward the close of this calendar year. For pens and pencils and erasers. For memory and dreams and love.

 

For the avocado I ate earlier.  For the glasses of clean, fresh water I’ve drunk all day.  For the comforting dinner we’ll eat in a bit.  For the time to prepare meals and tuck in a little love. For nourishment and contentment and convenience.

 

For the luxury to share in a space like this, with people like you.  For the privilege of living in a country filled with freedoms.  For the relative ease in which I live my life, knowing this isn’t the case for everyone.  For hope and tenderness and understanding.

 

For the things I’ve listed here.  For all the things (and people) not mentioned, but resting in my heart.  For all of that and them and more.

 

Sending so much love today and this week, m

And you?  What are the gratitudes in your heart right now?

 

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Here’s how you can play along with Gratitude Week:

  1. Share your gratitudes with #GratitudeWeek2018 on Instagram.
  2. Leave a comment below and/or link to your own blog post. You can share in this post any or all days.
  3. Send me an email…I love them, I read them, I respond to them.
  4. Reflect privately at home.

You Can’t Plan ‘Now’…But You Can Do It

Often, during the week, I think of things I want to write about in this space.  Then, when the time comes to sit and write, I’m blank.  And I know…keep a notebook handy, jot the ideas down. Sometimes I do, but mostly not. This space (and much of my work) has become a reflection of right now, so that I find it hard to plan ahead.  I read articles and see downloadable schedules for mapping out blog posts.  It just doesn’t seem to work for me.  While there are certain pieces I can write ahead of time, mostly what I want to share here comes from whatever I’m doing or feeling or thinking now (or at least close to now).

 

It’s hard to plan now.

 

I find some comfort in that…in not being able to plan now. So why try?  Why force it?  This isn’t to say we can’t prepare for things and set ourselves up for success (I use that term loosely).  It isn’t to say we shouldn’t pack thoughtfully for a trip or map things out in a planner or keep an eye on the weather forecast.  Of course, planning has its place.  I, personally, love when things are mapped out and predictable.

 

Yet there is freedom in relinquishing a tight hold.  There is peace in releasing expectations for how we want everything (and everyone) to be. We cannot stay on top of every little thing; we cannot control every little thing (anything)….and, really, that’s exhausting.  Though we can be responsible and prepared, at a certain point, things will be as they will be.

 

Jumping from planning blog posts (or not planning, as the case may be) to not trying to control all facets of life is a pretty big leap.  But I trust that you’ll take my point.  There are times for planning and structuring.  And there are times (so many times) for going with the flow and simply being.

 

I don’t have answers to many of the questions flitting through my head.  But I do know one answer (if you can call it that), for me, is to take responsibility for tasks I know need doing (be it writing an e-course or scrubbing the toilet or making mac-n-cheese yet again) as well as to step back (or to the side) from time to time. It’s okay to let life happen.  Do what needs doing.  I’m not suggesting you shirk responsibilities.  But after your work is done (whatever that work may be), take your foot off the gas pedal.  Coast a little.  Breathe, deeply and slowly.

 

It’s hard to plan now.  And you know what?  It’s not really necessary.  What is necessary is living your now. Being in it while it’s happening. Easier said than done, I know. But possible.  Doable.

 

So do the doable.  Do your now.  Right now.

 

Sending a little love your way, m

 

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:: Dear Thursday ::

Dear Thursday,

 

Thank you for beginning with tea.  Thank you for the words I got down, even though they frustrated me and I finished the writing session feeling not satisfied but antsy and disheartened.  Thank you for the cinnamon rolls I shared with the kids.  Thank you for a bottle of fresh milk to replace the sour one. Thank you for leftover udon soup. Thank you for the difficult book I’m reading with my daughter which is creating opportunity for important discussions. Thank you for the man who teaches my son guitar and the woman who teaches my daughter violin.  Thank you for the cookbook I love and the fact that I’ve been able to renew it twice now at the library.  Thank you for the pork ragu which cooked slowly in the oven. Thank you for the afternoon rain which calmed my antsy state.  Thank you for the flickering candle and the twinkle lights on the deck out back.  Thank you for the rumbling thunder late in the day. Thank you for my family (nuclear and of origin and the friend one grown over the years).  Thank you for being exactly what you were, even though you felt hard and a little bit off.  I didn’t like the first half of you, but there was a reconciliation, a shift, an embrace.  So thank you, Thursday…thank you for being exactly what you were.

 

 

What was your Thursday like?  Share in the comments below, or jot down your memories in a journal or notebook.  Sometimes it’s nice to look back as we begin to move forward.

 

Sending a little love your way, m

 

 

P.S. Links above are not affiliate.  I’m just sharing because they’re books I like, and you might too.

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