• Just Life

    TGIF | Gratitude.

    Oh my, I have loved the gratitude notes that Michelle popped into my inbox each morning this week. As a rule, I don’t check email before I begin my morning quiet time, but this week, I logged on briefly to snag a screenshot of her prompt. I logged a few comments with my morning journaling, then let the prompt sit … marinate even … and I was surprised – and delighted – with what all of that time turned up. My evening posts weren’t what my morning time envisioned. or some days even could’ve imagined. Is that gratitude at work? or time? I’d like to think it’s both. Thinking about…

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    Throwback Thursday | Thirty-four Years.

    On Sunday, Marc and I celebrated our 34th anniversary and he shared a few two-of-us throwback photos on Instagram. A few were actually new to me and I asked him to send them to me.  from the cover of our wedding album engagement photo – fall, 1983  November 19, 1983  2001 at Katie’s wedding – a favorite! this summer – and technically three of us 🙂 So this will be our 35th Thanksgiving together as a married couple. We spent our first Thanksgiving in Cancun (honeymoon) and I don’t remember much about Thanksgiving dinner that year except that it was a hotel buffet. The next year, though, we were in…

  • Just Life

    Three on Thursday | Grateful.

    …continuing with the theme: 1. Marc’s continued commitment to moving more. We went shopping on Monday for his second new pair of shoes this year. Walking 3.5 miles every morning wears out shoes! Here he is snapping a photo of the old and new pairs to share on Instagram (I love that, too!) 2. Those morning walks have been wonderful for our relationship, too. There is something about walking together that makes it easier to talk. Of course being outside – and away from the TV – is healthy too. 3. The encouragement and community around NaBloPoMo. I look forward to seeing all the posts in my feed reader ……

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    Three on Thursday | Grateful.

    …continuing with the theme I introduced last week: 1. Brighter mornings. I took this photo at about 7:30 Monday morning – no lamp light required! 2. Saying “yes” to something new. A friend texted me Monday to ask if I’d like to attend the book festival with her Tuesday afternoon. Both books sound like fun (and The Forever Summer has an interesting premise about the impacts of DNA testing on “family secrets” that might make for a great bookclub discussion). She also invited me to attend next Tuesday’s event when Nicole Krauss will be solo-ing. (I started reading Forest Dark last night.) 3. A slow morning. That’s me and my…

  • Just Life

    Three on Thursday | Grateful.

    Every day, as the last piece of that day’s journaling, I write down five things for which I am grateful. Partly to be intentional about gratitude. but also because it feels good to end each journal entry on a positive note. The Book of Joy lists gratitude as one of the Eight Pillars of Joy and devotes an entire chapter to it. I’m sure most of us reading the book are not at all surprised at how much joy comes from gratitude, but this: …people who focus on gratitude, by keeping a list of what they were grateful for, exercised more often, had fewer physical symptoms, felt better about their…

  • Just Life

    With a Grateful Heart.

    from my journal My morning devotion, from These Days, was based on Psalm 103. The first verse – copied above – sums up perfectly my feelings this morning. Yesterday was scary, but we are all ok: Mother’s power came back last night; Betty and her friend left early this morning to return to their homes in North Palm Beach. The sideways rain and wind showed up a leak in our porch roof that let water into our living room. And there are two big pine trees in the back yard that will hopefully be gone before we have another storm. Otherwise, we are just two tired folks (with one not-so-happy…

  • Just Life

    Slow Me Down.

    My neighbor Tom was moved to inpatient hospice care Friday evening.  Our little neighborhood is in a waiting place. Sunday afternoon in our neighborhood When I find myself failing to notice the beauty of a moonlit night, the abundance of harvests fruits and vegetables, the perfection of clouds agains a blue sky, slow me down and give me gratitude and reverence for all your gifts.  ~ from my Lenten devotion, p. 57 I started a shawl for my friend Renie (Tom’s wife). Knitting Kidsilk Haze on size 5 needles … is certainly slowing me down. I didn’t realize quite how perfect the project was until I read those words this…

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    A Rose among Thorns.

    Today’s Gratitude Note opened with these lines: Some people are always grumbling because roses have thorns;  I am thankful that thorns have roses.   ~Alphonse Karr~ and gave us this challenge: As you consider gratitude today, think about something that bothers you, irks you, ticks you off. Pause. Can you think of one thing (just one) (but maybe more) that’s actually good about this particular thing? Does it stretch you in some way? Can you accept the thorns in order to celebrate the rose? I couldn’t help but recall those words as I left the polls this afternoon after casting my ballot in what has been the most awful election process…

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    Watercolor Wednesday | Five Minutes.

    Thanks to Kat and Bonny, I’ve been following along with Michelle’s Gratitude Week. Today, she’s invited us to Take some time today to step outside or to sit in a favorite spot in your home. Take five minutes (yes, you can carve out five) and get quiet. Close your eyes, take a deep breath, then open your eyes. What delights you, what shakes you, what makes you say oh my? Five minutes. What struck me first when I read those words was that it wouldn’t be hard at all for me to carve out that time. In fact, those minutes might give some purpose and direction to this day that…

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    Ten on Tuesday | Oh Happy Day.

    …Tuesday again. already?! This was my third Tuesday with Charlie and we’re having a ball. Life is good and I am happy about so very many things. Carole‘s asked us to share “Ten Things You’re Happy About Right Now”…and here are my 10 for today. 1. I got up with my 5:15 am alarm. This hasn’t happened the last two Tuesdays. I teach until 8pm on Monday nights and by the time I get home, and eat dinner, and unwind…I’m up way too late and 5am is way too early. But last night I was in bed at 10:30 and the whole day got off to a better start. 2.…