A quote posted to Facebook awhile back sticks with me...
"If you woke up tomorrow with only those things for which you expressed gratitude today, what would you have?"
Really makes you think, doesn't it?
My friend and mentor Heather O'Sullivan Canney is a big proponent of keeping a gratitude journal, and I've acquired the habit from her. The process can be life-changing, if you give it a chance. While I don't always write everything down, the simple process of expressing gratitude for the blessings in your life eventually becomes automatic as breathing. Better yet, when your heart and mind are full of gratitude it leaves little room for negativity. Those two qualities can't seem to share the same space.
Gratitude is fairly easy to muster when it comes to family, home, and finances (at least I hope so!). But what about the little things which make life so much more pleasant, interesting, or comfortable? Or those which challenge us, making us grow in wisdom, strength, intellect? It's become a pet habit of mine, to think of new, random, and sometimes silly things for which to be grateful.
And so, in the spirit of Thanksgiving which is but two weeks away, I offer my first installment of Totally Random Gratitude...
Barn cats: Without them, we would be overrun with vermin. My youngest spends more time with them than any toy I've ever purchased. They are always happy to see me, and as long as they have a dish full of food and a warm place to curl up, they are totally content. Barn cats provide a valuable (and totally organic) service and ask little in return. It doesn't get any better than that.
Onions: Rare is the meal I cook without first slicing or dicing an onion. I can't imagine a soup, casserole, stir-fry, omelet, spaghetti sauce or taco without one. Or three.
Microfleece: A miracle of modern technology and absolute godsend to those of us living in frigid climates.
Water softeners: Without one in this house, there would be no such thing as "whites" and my laundry would consist of darks, mediums and "oranges". A lady who grew up in this house told me once that her mother would melt snow in order to acquire soft water with which to wash their whites.
Mentors: The list of people from whom I seek advice, knowledge and inspiration is a long one indeed. Some are friends I've known for years (or decades), some are professionals in their chosen field... and of course my beloved parents top that list. Also included, however, are lots of people whom I've never met in person but am still so grateful for the value they provide. One thing I've learned over the years is if I'm not particularly gifted or educated in a particular area, there always is someone who can help. "Do it yourself" is not always applicable or wise. My hair stylist comes to mind here...
...and the list goes on. I will add to it in these days leading up to Thanksgiving. In the meantime, for what or whom are you totally, randomly grateful?