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Thursday Gratitudes.

One of the things I try to do when I get stressed out (lots of stuff on my plate right now - good stuff, but stuff nonetheless) is write up a list of gratitudes.


It's an attempt to change my outlook, to refocus and get myself moving forward once again.


Here's my list for today:


1. Working from home. There are positives and negatives to this set-up, but overall I love it and am really thankful that both Chris and I have the chance to work from home.
2. Chris waking up first and making the coffee.
3. Simon still snuggled in his bed still fast asleep at 9am...it's the first day of summer sleep-in
4. A hydrangea that will bloom for the first time this year.
5. Parking our car in the garage...we keep forgetting that we can and every time we do we talk about how awesome it is (little things, right?)
6. Seeing all Lily's (our black lab) tennis balls in the floor of my studio. Yesterday there were five. Right now she is picking up and dropping her ball on the dining room floor and chasing it as it rolls away and then repeating the whole thing again.
7. Getting ready to teach a new class in Chicago next week. Packing kits and thinking about the students and getting excited to have another experience with a new group of people.
8. So thankful that my niece was born safe and sound just about on time. No NICU this time around for my sister-in-law, brother, and new baby. Even more excited to meet little Lucy soon.


Note: As I sat here writing this list this morning I actually found it to be tough to think
of things. That's a pretty good sign to me that I am out of sync with
feeling thankful on a daily basis. Definitely something I need
to work on again - time to pull out my gratitude file and get to writing things down.


If you are feeling up to it, I would love to read what you are thankful for today.

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166 thoughts

  1. Christy Pair says…
    06/19/2008

    A quick one- I am thankful for storytime! I have the joy of taking my 14 month old to a wonderful storytime with a great librarian. Seeing how happy this makes my little girl makes me thankful for books, and babies, and so much more!

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  2. Sara in B'ham says…
    06/19/2008

    I'm SO grateful that in a little over 36 hours I will be walking into the front door of my Mom and Dad's house for the first time in months. I'll be even more grateful for the sourdough pancakes my Dad will make on Saturday morning.;) Nothing recharges the soul better than being 'home'.

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  3. Helen says…
    06/19/2008

    Thankful for so many things. That I have all I need, that I'm not one of the millions who struggle even for food. Thankful that my family and I are healthy. Thankful that the sun is shining. Thankful that there's a flower that my son planted blossoming on the balcony. Thankful for many small, and not so small, things.

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  4. Jennifer Miles says…
    06/19/2008

    Today is my 15th wedding anniversary, so I'm thankful for that as well as my loving and thoughtful husband who I get to share it with.

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  5. Lynn says…
    06/19/2008

    Great Idea -- Today I am thankful for:
    1) my son is turning six today and doing something special with him
    2) I have a husband who is will to stay at home with the kids so I can continue to work
    3) that family will be visiting this weekend to celebrate my son - they all drive at least 2 hours for this
    4) all three of my kids that they love to play together all the time
    5) that Ali suggested doing this. I have not done this in such a long time

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  6. Kerry G. says…
    06/19/2008

    today I'm thankful for summer and baseball games, a visiting friend, an upcoming weekend and a sense of contentment that has washed over me this week.

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  7. Shell says…
    06/19/2008

    I keep a "Joy Journal" that I write in daily, some days there are so many things to be joyful for that my mind thinks of these faster than my pen can write. Other days, just waking up in the morning (or going to bed) is the only thing that makes the list for the day. I've made several of these as gifts for the girls that I work with, so it's kinda fun + interesting to hear what makes their joy list on a daily basis. By writing these joys down it makes me stop and think about how blessed I am and how much I have to be grateful for, and on the days when there's not so much, I can go back and read the entries from a good day.

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  8. Steffani says…
    06/19/2008

    Thankful for:
    1.a day of summer vacation to putter around the house (I'm a teacher)
    2. a fantastic husband who has to go to work while I am on summer vacation, and yet encourages me to goof off and have fun on my time off
    3. my elderly cat (17yrs) is eating well today - she often struggles with digestive trouble
    4. my brother coming to visist this weekend

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  9. Rebecca says…
    06/19/2008

    Hi Ali –
    Loved your post today and it was just what I needed. Now I am taking up your challenge and you’re right – when you have to think hard about it, it may be time to get life’s “big picture” back in focus.
    1) Family. Glad to be with my husband for 11 years (known for 27) and my 10 yr old who is curious and imaginative little girl, not ready to grow up and leave the dolls behind and wear those “low riding pants” some of her buddies wear. Glad to be reunited with my daughter given up for adoption (husband is also her birthdad) and be a part of her life. She will marry next year and getting a call from her fiancé after he called her parents and let his parents know, and asking for our blessing is something we will always remember.
    2) Health. Had some scares late last year and early in 2008, but things came out good for me and with so many folks struggling with health and insurance issues it’s time to be thankful you can lace up your sneakers and walk out into each day
    3) My job. I work for an artist and make a 0.8 mile commute from my home. After years on the road in pharma sales, it is a great gift to be able to dash home for lunch and over to the school for events for my 10 yr old. We were able to get our first dog, a crazy funny white Border collie named Dottie who keeps us in line.
    4) Kindness. Finding ways to show it to others and having it returned to you at times in the most unexpected ways.
    5) Your Blog. I am not an artist but I love to take in all sorts of sights and sounds. I am guessing like many, your blog is a daily stop for me and I am glad for the things you share about your life, art and creativity with all of us.
    Rebecca

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  10. Lisa Hodge says…
    06/19/2008

    It is nice to reflect on the things that make each one of us happy. I'm so blessed that my family and I are healthy. So many out there don't have that luxury. I enjoy going out on the porch early in the morning and just listening to the birds and looking at the gifts that God gives us each new day....the ability to just get up, then go out and experience everything with the senses... the morning air, hearing the birds, watching the sun rise. I am thankful for all that I have and all that God has allowed me to be :D
    Ok... so maybe I went overboard there, but I am a Happy Person- what can I say? I try not to take one single ounce of life for granted, because it call all be gone in a blink of the eye. I'm thankful.
    Lisa H. in Arkansas

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  11. ady abreu says…
    06/19/2008

    Things, I am grateful for today.
    1- My son is happy and healthy and loving summer camp.
    2- My husband is my biggest fan and he cooks for us if he gets home first.
    3- Thankful for having a garage sale and clearing clutter from my home. There is no better feeling than a clean and organized home.
    4- Thankful that I don't have to struggle to make ends meet especially at this moment in our lives. It's very scary.
    5- Thankful for the most amazing friends IRL and in Blog world.
    I'll stop now but this a layout waiting to happen. Thanks Ali

    Reply 0 Replies
  12. jkhenson says…
    06/19/2008

    Thankful that:
    *tonsil/adenoid removal went well on Friday and girls are on the mend
    *my parents can come for a visit
    *we have 14 state postcards received, a fun summer activity
    *my parents can come visit this weekend
    *I am healthy enough to train for a fall marathon
    *There are such kind, thankful people in the world like you to inspire me! :) Thanks!

    Reply 0 Replies
  13. Sarah says…
    06/19/2008

    Good idea...I am thankful for
    1) an amazing son and a husband with excellent communication skills.
    2) a summer filled with fresh produce.
    3) a comfortable home
    4) this exercise. Because it's important to be thankful.

    Reply 0 Replies
  14. Chris says…
    06/19/2008

    Thanks Ali. The last few days here have ben dismal. We have some unhappy boys due to sports tryouts and not making the teams they wanted. So today when I really didn't want to be thankful for anything, just wanted to curl up with my boys and watch movies in bed, I am thankful that I have children who are able to play sports. You made me think today. I am grateful for my life and even though it didn't turn out how they wanted, they are still lucky to be able to play. For that I am thankful.

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  15. michelle says…
    06/19/2008

    my grateful list for today:
    1. I live in a wonderful new condo
    2. I have a steady job that pays well, and allows me to focus on other aspects of my life.
    3. I have a great brother
    4. I have a wonderful husband
    5. I have access to the one-cup coffee machine
    6. I work for good people
    7. I live in southern california

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  16. Denise Kashyap says…
    06/19/2008

    I am feeling overwhelmed with commitments, so I have a lot to learn about de-stressing and feeling grateful right now. I'm thankful for:
    Breathing
    A nice warm shower
    Talking with my 5 year old
    Friends to meet up with for a playgroup
    Kind and helpful people in the world
    Thanks for this exercise, Ali, I'm feeling better already!

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  17. Susan Hessler says…
    06/19/2008

    Thank you - I love the gratitude lists and have followed up after reading yours and done my own many times. I try to do them with my four kids every once in a while, usually in the car. I, too, have been out of touch with my gratitude lately. Thanks for the reminder.
    Today I am grateful for:
    1. You Ali, your influence over my scrapbooking has really been strong. Still your influence over my attitude and perspective has been much stronger. I really notice little things in my life, and even when it's only for the moment in my mind I celebrate them. Thanks.
    2. Watching my son kick the soccer ball around while waiting for soccer camp to begin today. He looked so natural and happy. He is a reluctant sports guy - much more into drawing and stories - but there is a gift in being in your body and just moving.
    3. The beautiful place I live - Redwood forests reaching down to the coast. Everything is blooming and the light (especially midmorning and late afternoon) is wonderful.
    4. Sick days - we have a bug going through our family and today is my day. Nice to be able to go back to bed and know everything at work will be fine.
    Peace. Susan

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  18. Lindsay Palamaruk says…
    06/19/2008

    Today I am thankful for being able to call and see my mom whenever I want. That she supports me and does not judge me or others in any way. That she accepts me and the choices I have made in my life wholeheartedly. I am thankful that in 2 1/2 months I will be marrying my best friend. I am so thankful for the relationship we get to celebrate with each other every day. I am also thankful that tonight my cousin is coming over and we get to have a scrapbook night together!! Now WHAT could be better than that?? :)

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  19. Susan Hessler says…
    06/19/2008

    Thank you - I love the gratitude lists and have followed up after reading yours and done my own many times. I try to do them with my four kids every once in a while, usually in the car. I, too, have been out of touch with my gratitude lately. Thanks for the reminder.
    Today I am grateful for:
    1. You Ali, your influence over my scrapbooking has really been strong. Still your influence over my attitude and perspective has been much stronger. I really notice little things in my life, and even when it's only for the moment in my mind I celebrate them. Thanks.
    2. Watching my son kick the soccer ball around while waiting for soccer camp to begin today. He looked so natural and happy. He is a reluctant sports guy - much more into drawing and stories - but there is a gift in being in your body and just moving.
    3. The beautiful place I live - Redwood forests reaching down to the coast. Everything is blooming and the light (especially midmorning and late afternoon) is wonderful.
    4. Sick days - we have a bug going through our family and today is my day. Nice to be able to go back to bed and know everything at work will be fine.
    Peace. Susan

    Reply 0 Replies
  20. Christy/ MommaOnTheMountain says…
    06/19/2008

    My gratitude list (which I don't share enough)
    *My God
    *My family: a devoted husband and four healthy wonderful children
    *My health, my place in this world
    *Teaching young ones at church
    *being creative: sewing, photography, misc. things that I do
    *Summertime Sunshine, that has FINALLY arrived to Oregon!

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  21. Jennifer McGuire says…
    06/19/2008

    I am thankful for sunshine, healthy kids, medical & dental insurance, diet coke, hot & sour soup, and that they caught my friend's breast cancer early enough to hopefully be able to do something about it.

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  22. {vicki} says…
    06/19/2008

    Today I'm thankful for:
    My son getting to attend baseball camp
    My father in law for picking him up at camp and keeing him until I get off work
    Bible school
    A beautiful summer day here in Georgia
    {vicki}

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  23. Barack's Babe says…
    06/19/2008

    I'm thankful that I will be living in the White House come November. ;)

    Reply 0 Replies
  24. Nancy says…
    06/19/2008

    Today I am grateful for:
    1. My husband not having any major heart palpitations recently;
    2. The opportunity to see Stevie Wonder live in concert TONIGHT!;
    3. Peeking out my slit-of-a-window at work and seeing mostly blue skies;
    4. Self, family and friends who are, generally, in good health.
    Thanks, Ali! You remind me to keep things in perspective.

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  25. Kelley Sweitzer says…
    06/19/2008

    I'm thankful that I just got a full-time job. We really need the extra money and while this will bring some changes to my family, it's all for the good.

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