As I’m sure most of you would agree, it’s tough to see blessings through the cloud of stress. I have had to mentally force myself to concentrate on the good things these last few weeks. And it really has made a difference.
This year, we (or should I say I?) made the decision to merge a yearly tradition to do a gratitude project of some sort during the month of November with two new ideas. First of all, the Fishful Thinking program has a Grateful Sayings poster that we did last Spring that I thought would be perfect for November. I’ve been saving it up. And then when I heard about Chocolate on my Cranium’s traditions to make a Thanks and Giving poster each year, I knew I had to make that adjustment.
So the kids and I set out to make our own Thanks and Giving – Grateful Sayings poster. We started out with two blank trees on a large poster board and lots of colorful leaves cut out of construction paper. The kids quickly filled up and covered the entire “Thanks” tree.
Note to self: Either we need smaller leaves next year or we need a bigger poster.
The “Giving” tree, full of ideas of service that they could give others, or ways that they could make other people, in and out of the family happy, required a little more effort, and the tree wasn’t quite so full, but they made some fabulous suggestions.
This exercise was a blaring reminder to me of all of the ways we continue to be blessed, even in times of trial. This year, more than any other, we have witnessed incredible acts of service on our behalf. It is humbling and miraculous. People are good.
Our list brought everything back to the basics. Among other things, the kids listed their faith, scriptures, family members (the individual mentions, rather than general “family” shout outs made me happy!), special toys, friends, talents, etc.
And my list goes something like this:
~I am grateful for a husband who works hard to support us and is dedicated to following a dream. I am grateful that our marriage has stayed strong through tough times, and that despite our stress and lack of time together, we still like each other.
~I am thankful for children who don’t complain. Who look out for each other, and sometimes even tired old Mommy. I am grateful that they have been healthy, that they are doing well in school. And I am thankful that they can still find many things to be thankful for, and that they don’t complain about what they don’t have.
~I am thankful for good friends who are supportive and patient with me.
~I am thankful for all of the people (anonymous and otherwise) who have helped us and supported us along our journey to start a new business.
~I’m thankful for this silly old blog to give me something to keep my mind focused on happy things. And I’m thankful everyday for the few people who stop by to read (and especially for those who take the time to leave a comment!)
What are you most grateful for this year?
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