Gratitude

I am someone who looks at the positive things in my life more often than dwelling on the negative. I once heard that if my cup is always just half empty (or half full), get a smaller cup! With an attitude like this, my life is always overflowing with wonder.

Many recognize November as a gratitude month, and that suits me! For a long time, I’ve kept a gratitude list, recording at least five things each day for which I am grateful.

On Friday, a friend of mine lost her husband. I called to extend my condolences and thought about how much I love my husband Dave, even though he can get on my nerves at times. Suddenly, his corny jokes were funny again. I guess that Wayne Dyer was on point when he wrote, “When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change.”

For many years, my parents, five siblings and their families converged on the home of my youngest sister in North Carolina to celebrate Thanksgiving. At last count, there were twenty-seven of us. Now there are many more, as our children raise families of their own,

Our Thanksgiving celebration always started with the entire brood attending Mass at Sandy’s church. Later, the brothers became gourmet chefs for the day, and the meals were always sumptuous! The women, children and any non-cooking brothers raked leaves on their rather large country front lawn. What fun, making big piles of leaves, jumping into them and acting like children! We probably made a bigger mess than actually helping my brother-in-law!

Sandy rented a big tent so we could all be together for the meal. One year Sandy’s husband Craig, asked that we all take a turn to say one thing for which we were grateful. Most of us shared how wonderful it was to have such a great, loving family. Yumi, their foreign exchange student from Japan attempted to speak but was so overcome with emotion that she just started crying and buried herself on Craig’s chest.

Now our families have grown and we no longer make the pilgrimage to Sandy’s place. It’s a fond memory though!

November seems to be a perfect month for gratitude, so I decided to record one thing every day on my facebook page. I am also making at least one phone call a day to thank the people in my life. It seems like such gestures when I really look at, and acknowledge the abundance in my life.

I’d like to challenge you for the rest of November, to find one thing a day that makes you happy. So, what are you grateful for? I bet you don’t stop at one!

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