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Ten Things of Thankful - August 17th

I'm participating in Ten Things of Thankful, a blog hop that asks us to "focus on the good things going on in your life by listing ten things you are thankful for today..."
 
This has been an "interesting" week, meaning it has had its ups and downs. But I've made it through and here I am at Saturday, my favorite day of all!  As always, I have plenty of blessings to count, so let's get started...

1) As I've noted before, Papa Bear works six days at week at his job, then one week a month he gets a three-day weekend which he looks forward to very much.  Last weekend was his long weekend for August, and I am very thankful that on Monday he chose to come into town to take me to lunch!  This was extra nice because our lunch hours are at different times and we never get to share lunch during the week. He also finally got to come up to my office and meet the folks I work with.

2)  I am thankful that Papa Bear has a great sense of humor!  While in town on Monday he went to wash his truck, then came to get my Escape and take it for a much needed wash too.  Unfortunately, as he was in the drive-thru car wash he soon discovered that it came with a free shower for him, since "someone" had apparently failed to close her sunroof properly.  When he reached up to hit the close button it went the other way and opened wide instead, soaking him and the front seats before he could get it shut.  He called me up, and it was impossible not to laugh... since it didn't happen to me! :-)  We are still laughing about it, and I bet neither one of us will ever enter another car wash without checking the sunroof first!

3)  I am thankful that I've matured emotionally... at least a little... in recent years.  One day this week at work I found a note card in the mail addressed to me. Thinking it was a "thank you note" that we sometimes receive from clients, I opened it up and was surprised shocked to discover that it was "hate mail note" obviously written by a former disgruntled employee, though done so anonymously and with handwriting assistance so that we can't prove it.  Let's just say it was rude and crude and filled with non-truths.  I am thankful that I was able to respond more out of pity than anger. In the old days I would have initiated a confrontation, I would have responded in kind.  But I am older and less reactive these days, I refused to let her actions steal my inner peace.  I feel sad for someone who carries such bitterness and resentment, and expends their energy in trying to make others feel bad. I pray that she will learn that she is responsible for the things that happen in her life, and that blaming others is not the way to live.

4) On much brighter notes, I wrote a short story this week that I was proud of, A Box Full of Love, and I am so very thankful that it was well received.  Most often I am not satisfied with what I write, always feeling when I re-read it later that I could have/should have done better. This one felt right, and I was very blessed by all the positive feedback I received from fellow bloggers, friends and family!

5) While on the subject of blogging, I am so pleased and thankful for the blogging friends who are stopping by to share some creative writing at Two Shoes Tuesday and Six Sentence Stories.  I love to see how people will take a word and make it their very own with a story, poem or essay. If you haven't tried your hand at creative writing yet... do, and join us here this week, it's fun! I am thankful for the positive place we are building together for writers to share their work, no critiques allowed, just encouragement and good feedback!  I am clearly not a pro, and you don't need to be to join in!

6) I am thankful for the bounty of fresh fruit available in summer... sweet  peaches from the roadside stand, cantaloupe, grapes, cherries.... mmm, it's all good! 

7) I am thankful for something we all take for granted that wasn't so readily accessible years ago... ICE!  Ice for water and tall cool glasses of tea, and ice for filling ice chests when travelling down the road! Nothing is nicer than a really cold drink on a hot summer day! And we don't even have to fill up ice-cube trays any more, or ration out the cubes two per glass! :-)

8) I am thankful for speech recognition texting on my iPhone 5! Its so much easier and nicer than trying to type lots of words with chubby fingers on tiny keys!  I am amazed at how well it works with different dialects and voices, and the occasional misinterpretations can be  pretty funny.  It's also intuitive and learns the names of people and things you use frequently.  Today I sent a message about a hat, and it entered cat instead, because I talk about cats so much... smarty pants phone indeed! :-)

9) I am thankful for sandals! I wear them twelve months out of the year, only switching to closed in shoes if the temps drop below freezing and it snows, which doesn't happen often in Texas.  My feet love the freedom of having wiggle space for my toes, and I grumble under the confinement of shoes.  Ideally, I would go barefoot, but since they frown on that at work, and there are stickers everywhere here in our Texas weed patch, I can live happily in comfy sandals, and comfort is what I'm all about!

10) I am thankful when life presents me with little opportunities to make a difference. Yesterday I had to mail out some legal papers at the end of the day.  The line at the Post Office was long, and we were all hot and tired.  As we moved slowly toward the front I looked behind me to see an elderly woman, maybe in her late 70's or early 80's, bent over and using a cane for support, with a small package that she was waiting to mail.  My heart went out to her.  Stepping aside, I put my arm gently behind her and motioned her forward ahead of me in line. At first she was hesitant.  I said, just loud enough for the folks in front of me to hear... "I was taught to respect my elders ma'am, please go ahead of me. I'm not in that big of a hurry today." She smiled and moved up a space. A middle-aged Hispanic man ahead of me looked back and smiled, and said "I was too," and insisted that she move ahead of him. The lady at the head of the line looked none to pleased by being "motivated" to do the same, but she knew she was going to look pretty pathetic if she didn't, so she obliged.  The elderly lady smiled sweetly and thanked us all, stating how much she appreciated the kindness.  She said it made her day, but really, the truth is, it made ours.  Doing the right thing makes you feel good inside!

Life is GOOD my friends. While you are counting your blessings in the week ahead, make sure you take time to BE the BLESSING to others around you!
~Share your blessings with us at Ten Things of Thankful~
 
And if you enjoy writing... join us at Two Shoes Tuesday and Six Sentence Stories this week!

32 comments:

  1. I love all your comments - sorry about the unhappy past employee. Love the fresh fruit too. I used to work that same schedule your hubs has - at the airport. We go two weekend of three days off. I love the way you keep a grateful journal - I keep one here at home too. sandie

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    1. Thank you Sandie! The more I focus on all the things I have to be grateful for, the things that aren't so great kind fade away. I'm convinced that there are always blessings to be found, no matter how difficult the situation one may be in at the moment.

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  2. I should know better than read your post without a hanky. Your number 10 made my day too. :)

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    1. That was sweet, Mary! It was truly a lovely way to end the long work week, I drove home smiling. Opportunities to be a blessing to someone are out there, if we keep our eyes open... and off the phone! :-)

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  3. another great list. that's funny about the unexpected shower at the carwash! I am sure he didn't think it was so funny. LOL

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    1. The awesome thing about Papa Bear is that he wasn't mad at all.. surprised, yes, and certainly quite damp, but not upset. He sat on a bench in the sun at the carwash until he dried off a bit, and they used a shop vac and towels to dry out the inside of the car. I couldn't help but laugh, and he laughed too. Now had it have happened with my ex, that would have gone much differently.

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  4. Evening Josie,what a nice thing to happen to the elderly lady in the post office. Things like that are so very special. And fancy papa bear and the car wash,hee,bet his face was a picture! Same as you say,it's a good job he's got a sense of humour! X

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    1. It was a small action of kindness, Jess. I hope someday when I am older (not that very far away), someone shows me the same. I try to live by the golden rule. It really is too bad there wasn't a video of the car wash incident, it would have been great Youtube fare! :-) A sense of humor is a wonderful blessing, and I am blessed to be with a man who knows how to laugh at life's minor calamities.

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  5. Oh and a big thank you Josie for creating such nice supportive spaces for ickle bloggers like me. I'm really enjoying the cosiness your writing prompts and linkys offer and I do love the chance to play with thoughts and words x

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    1. I'm so glad that you're eager to participate in Two Shoes Tuesday and Six Sentence Stories, Jess. I am very much an amateur writer, but it's fun to try, and it's nice to have a friendly place to share it! To me, it's relaxing fun!

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  6. You are so right about #10 and doing the right thing always does make me feel so good inside. What a beautiful story and thank you so much for sharing. Truly brightened my Saturday that much more. Tons to be thankful for and just so happy to read all about it!!

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    1. Thank you Janine! It's funny how the greatest pleasures in life come from doing something nice for others! I do have tons to be thankful for, these were the first ten that came to mind this week, I could keep going. I've come a long way from the girl who saw life as very dark and hopeless!

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  7. Yes, helping others always benefits everyone involved. It is important to remember, too, that we all end up needing it at some time. Our society has a problem with respect, especially of the elderly. And we are all getting older, too. Kindness goes a long way.

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    1. You are so right Annie, our society has forgotten to care for the elders in a manner that is respectful and kind, they are castaways, seen as a burden, or source of derision. So very sad. The Golden Rule is as solid today as it ever was, we just need to teach it to the younger generations! It really isn't any harder to be kind and caring, it just takes getting the focus off ourselves for a moment and seeing the opportunities life presents us to make a difference!

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  8. Hi dear friend! I have been laying low but am slowly getting back to some blogging and reading on here. I always love your reminders to be thankful!

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    1. I am overjoyed to see you feeling up to being out and around a bit, Carrie, you've been greatly missed! Blessings overflow in my life, and remembering that helps me to break away from the grumbling and defeat of hard days. The bigger picture is so obvious.. God Loves Me just as I am! :-)

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  9. What a beautiful list, Josie...especially your #10...I love it. Thanks for the reminder to take a look at the people around us and to do what we can to make their lives better somehow! :)

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    1. Thank you very much! I am often guilty of being so weary or self-occupied that I miss opportunities like that, or think later of what I could have done. My new self-improvement goal is to "Be the Blessing", instead of just counting the ones that come to me!

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  10. one of the things I have learned as you have is to leave unsaid that which doesn't need saying....nice job on that...lovely list as well! And I love your two word prompts...They make me think in a whole new way.

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    1. That lesson has taken me a long, long time to learn, Zoe, that most often the best response to ugliness is no response at all. It ends the game right there. The rule is "don't let people steal your joy", I'm still practicing my "let it go" skills, but I've found when I am m ore content with life in general, this stuff doesn't get to me so much.

      I'm delighted that you're enjoying my word prompts, participation is what makes it fun! I'm always amazed at the creative ways each persons takes a word and makes it their own! I love word play! :-)

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  11. Josie, you are one of the best list makers on the planet.
    A little bit of hilarity with the car wash story. I certainly wouldn't have been able to contain myself if I were you!
    You are very wise, knowing nothing good would come from confronting the hate mail sender. Good for you, keeping your cool.
    The fresh fruit and veggies are wonderful this time of year. I wish the peaches were cheaper, so I could can some for winter.
    I've got my thinking cap on, trying to come up with something for Tuesday.
    Sandals, I'm not so fond of. I'm with you on going barefoot when possible.
    Such a nice thing you did for the elderly woman at the post office. Glad the other patrons took your lead, even if it was grudgingly. :)

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    1. I don't know about being the best, Christine, but certainly one of the most wordy! I feel sorry for the eyes of those reading their way through my posts! I suppose I could go with a few words for each item, but it wouldn't be nearly as much fun! :-))

      Papa Bear and I, and my co-workers, and friends on Facebook, did indeed all have a good laugh, over Papa Bear's car wash adventure. I must confess my that my feathers would have been more ruffled if I'd gotten that surprise bath! He takes life very much in stride.

      I had to suppress a smile regarding the lady at the front of the PO line, she really didn't want to relinquish her spot, despite the fact that there were three counter workers and it wasn't going to be but a few minutes more waiting time. Sometimes peer pressure is a good thing ;-)

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  12. I love number 10! It's inspiring to see/hear of kindness like that.
    The car wash mishap totally sounds like something that would happen to me!
    Fresh fruit is also one of my faves.
    So sorry about the nasty note =(

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    1. It was purely a reaction, Cyndy, I didn't give it any thought, just saw a need for a bit of compassion. It is my goal to make acts of kindness second nature, I'm still a work in progress! :-)

      We all have "nasty note" days, when something or someone blindsides us. If we react as they hope, they win. If we refuse to let it rattle us, their efforts were wasted. My joy is too precious to me to let someone push me back into that place of anger and rage!

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  13. I will say that I actually laughed at your item#2...sitting here at the computer. So well done, I totally had a visual of the event, a gift for writing, yo.

    I also 'got something' from #3. How often do you allow ourselves to be drawn into the negativity of others...totally without benefit or any promise of a resolution that would benefit either party.
    I would love to find an app that would effectively translate 'clark' into anything approaching readable text! I spend a significant portion of my day behind the wheel and it would seem to be a good way to spend that time. But as of yet, no luck.
    Great List this week, Josie!

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    1. I would have loved video footage of Papa Bear's face when that water first started to spray in, Clark! Here he was doing something nice for me, and got rewarded with a nice clean face! ;-)

      Regards #3, I used to be very angry, and thus very reactionary. I've found that rarely serves me or the situation well. Now the only time I'll climb on my charger is when I feel someone else is being unfairly treated or abused, that's worth fighting for!

      I was surprised that my phone manages to translate almost all of my commentary correctly, as long as I make a conscious effort to speak slowly and clearly. The bloopers can be pretty funny though!

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  14. I love your post office story! Good manners are contagious, and I bet you made that woman's day!

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    1. Thanks Kristi, I hope we make her feel that she was important, and deserving of respect in the community. All elders should be made to feel that way!

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  15. I love the speech recognition on my iphone 5, too! It's so fun! I also like asking Siri to make phone calls for me and send texts and reminders. Gotta get my money's worth out of her!

    I laughed out loud at the mental picture of the sunroof opening instead of closing in the car wash. There's probably a good reason I don't have a sunroof, because something like that would surely happen to me, too.

    I once read in, I believe, Dear Abby, that you should never send a letter when you're angry, and you should never throw away an angry letter that you receive.

    I love letting someone in front of me in line! Almost always, they are so grateful! I never unload my groceries onto the belt at Aldi (where they don't have an express line) without checking to see if the person behind me only has a few items and would probably appreciate going ahead of me.

    Fabulous list, Josie!

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    1. I'm just starting to play with the Siri options, Dyanne, and yes - it's great fun and much faster!

      I'm delighted to read that you let people move ahead of you in store lines, Dyanne. It's something we all can do, and it sure does brighten someone's day, just to be acknowledged and treated nicely! The times someone has done it for me really made my day!

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  16. About Number Four - I had a nastygram email as well, and in the old days... just like you, I would have fired one back. But you know, the guy was venting over a generally frustrating situation, so I called him up, invited him out for coffee. We ended up closer for it.

    Love these memes, and you really flesh out the details. Not just snippets, which always feel dismissive or rushed! Amy

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  17. Your list and your attitude TOTALLY ROCK. You are such a kick-ass-great-attitude lady, and I love that you join in each week with such a thoughtul, wonderful list of brilliant things.

    I'm glad you laughed together about the inadvertent sun-roof shower incident :)

    Sorry you had a sucky letter, but your response is inspiring. I'm not sure I would've handled it half so well.

    And congrats on the story - I'll check it out in a sec :)

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Your comments are always appreciated... they make me smile! :-)