Pages

Thankful Thoughts - Dec. 7, 2013

I'm participating in Ten Things of Thankful, a weekly 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..." 

1) I am thankful for those who have the Christmas spirit and inspire me to get started with a little of my own. This is a difficult season for me for many reasons, but I have discovered that if I can get motivated to do some things to brighten the holiday for others, it makes me feel good too!

2) I am thankful for days when my knees aren't hurting. I am used to the old worn out joints giving me problems, but once in awhile I realize that that on this particular day there is no pain. I don't know why that is, but sure is lovely when it happens!

3) I am thankful for a husband who feels like I do about Christmas spending. We keep it simple and the list short, and make sure that we don't go in debt in the process.  Gifts can be creative and fun without spending a bundle or standing in long lines fighting crowds.  I am also thankful for online shopping, it is even more appreciated at this time of year.  Most of our gift buying is done online, which is so handy with shipping to folks who live far away.  Funny how the Internet has become a way of life, and it wasn't that many years ago that we didn't even know what it was!

4) I am so very thankful that we have good, safe, dependable vehicles to drive.  Many times in my life I have struggled with vehicles that wouldn't start well, didn't heat or cool adequately, broke down regularly,  and couldn't be trusted to go long distances.  Papa Bear and I both put over 250 miles a week on our vehicles, while commuting back and forth to work, running errands, etc.  It is a blessing not to have to worry every time I head to town.

5) I am thankful that I had a mother who took the time to bake with her children, letting us start with tasks like sifting flour and breaking eggs from the time we were very small. My sisters and I learned to love baking from being her helpers. I miss her most at Christmas time... sweet memories of wonderful cookies being made by the dozens.

6) I am thankful for understanding bosses who had no problem with me opting to stay home from work yesterday due to roads that were covered in a thick layer of ice after the previous night's freezing rain.  I didn't feel it was worth risking life, limb, or my vehicle for.  Needless to say, all the schools and many businesses were closed. 

7) I am thankful for my niece's delightful sense of humor.  She lives in Minnesota (which is much the same as living in Siberia in the winter time).  When  I noted that our usually mild weather was in the twenties and dropping into the teens today, she responded that she thought the only ice we were supposed to have in Texas was in the margaritas.  Amen to that! :-)

8) I am thankful for the "pay-it-forward" philosophy of responding to a person's kindness/assistance to oneself by being kind/helpful to someone else when the opportunity presents itself . I take the support and encouragement I have had and try to pay it forward whenever I can.  I am thankful for all the people in my life who took the time to care - it made all the difference!

9) I am thankful for friends and fellow bloggers who understand that I don't always get back to comment on their posts or reply to comments on mine.  I try hard to keep up with it, but time is limited, and I  sometimes often feel very overwhelmed trying to fit it all in.  If I could, rest assured that I would read every post you write comment on ever single one, and reply to every comment I receive... in an ideal world where all things are possible, work is unnecessary,  and time is a figment of imagination! :-)

10) I am thankful that I have grown children who are more excited about the holiday treats and baked-goods I send than anything money can buy. They have always been grateful children, happy even in the struggling years when the gifts they received were small.  I am blessed that they understand it is about the giving and sharing rather than having a huge pile of presents to open.  We saw these beautiful little snowman globes that change colors and have battery operated fans inside to keep the snow circulating.  I sent them each one to remind them of the magic of childhood Christmases years ago.  I also sent one to my niece, and one to my best friend, and am happy that they all liked them as much as I do!

 
 
~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~
 If you enjoy creative writing and want a place to share your efforts,
 join us here for Two Shoes Tuesday and Six Sentence Stories this week!

26 comments:

  1. Ohhhh those snowglobes are such fun :) I'm glad the recipients enjoyed them so much.

    Your niece is absolutely right about ice, though I'd argue that the only ice ANYWHERE should really be in the drinks because ice...BRRRRRRRRRRrrrrrr *shivers*

    I love that you have such gorgeous memories of baking and being tiny and your mom joining you in with preparing goodies for everyone :) Those memories are very precious. I remember baking with my Grandma, standing up on the little step-stool, at her chest-freezer (as our workspace) making rock cakes. They were good. I haven't made them in years, and don't remember the recipe, but they were always delicious :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Snow globes have evolved quite a bit from the little plastic ones we had as children and shook to make the "snow" fall, Lizzi, but they were just as magical then, with little winter scenes to view.

      I agree, ice should only be allowed in drinks. Snow is lovely for Christmas, and that's enough to last me all year. Driving on ice, and walking on it, fill me with terror. Slipping is not fun, bones break and bad stuff like that happens!

      My mom and I didn't have the best relationship Lizzi, but seasons like this remind me of all the things she did for us and with us and how hard she tried to make it special. Baking is something I enjoy and do fairly well, thanks to her! My grandma was another awesome baker. In her later years while she was still in her little house I would send her big boxes of baking ingredients that were beyond what she could afford... chocolate, nuts, candied cherries, mincemeat and such. It was a practical gift that she so enjoyed putting to good use!

      Delete
  2. My mission at Christmas has always been to minimize. I agree and also of the school that handmade is so much more special... We make for the adults in our family... it has been a great little tradition... keep taking deep breaths Josie... keep the overwhelming at bay! no worries re comments and other bloggers...I of course speak for myself but it seems that everyone is so understanding about the everyday pressures.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We keep working away at simplifying our lives and minimizing purchases, Zoe. Still a long way to go. We are such a consumer oriented society! Handmade gifts are always the most precious, because the are done with love and thought!

      Overwhelmed is pretty much a constant state of existence for me, I keep thinking that I will find ways to get my life more in order where I can fit comfortably, but the pressure to do more is always there. If I did all that I should be doing I would never end up blogging, and I long ago decided that play time and creative time are just as important as chore time. Dust waits! :-)

      Delete
  3. You have a wonderful list of things to be thankful for. I love the idea of slimming down the presents. I've cut back this year, and plan on doubling that next Christmas. It's the grands that I overdo for..every time!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Terri. I've found that people are often grateful when you suggest "let's not this year" or "lets exchange baked goods. The list of shopping is long and expensive for many folks and it just takes all the fun out of Christmas, not to mention a total distraction of the love and joy the season was intended to be! It is easy to spoil little ones a bit, though I sometimes see them with so many presents that they are more overwhelmed than overjoyed, and have lost the appreciation for simple things like a family board game or a new pair of winter pajamas! We got those things nearly every year and it was fun, we looked forward to it!

      Delete
  4. Very pretty snowglobes! And i know what you mean about not having enough hours in the day to visit and comment on every interesting blog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is one snowglobe that turns colors rapidly, Mimi! I got Papa Bear to take the photos for me as it changed, he is good at that!

      I manage to read most of the blogs I love each day, including yours, but often do it on the run and don't get back to comment. I wish that Blogger had a "like" button widget as Wordpress does. At least that way folks know that you've dropped by and liked what you read. I love to comment when I have time, feedback is what makes blogging the wonderful experience that it is!

      Delete
  5. I am so thankful for online shopping! I did almost all mine online. And I'm sure your kids are VERY thankful for your baking!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too, Kate, online shopping is the best invention ever! Ordered, wrapped, and delivered at the push of a button and on time! Lots of "free shipping" deals this season too, and I have Amazon Prime, so free shipping all year round, what a cool deal!

      My mom always sent boxes of baked treats while she was alive, Kate, I try to continue that tradition with my own two children, because I remember how treasured those care packages were!

      Delete
  6. As usual, you have a beautiful list, but #5 is my favorite. My mom didn't let me mess in the kitchen, but I had a great aunt who did. She taught me to do all kinds of things in the kitchen with her, plus let me go at it by myself whenever I wanted to. As a result, I LOVE baking!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My mom was a perfectionist, Dyanne, but when it came to baking this was in her favor, since everything had to be done correctly and we learned well. I was baking cakes and cookies on my own by early grade school years. It is interesting how our childhood experinces affect what we enjoy as adults! I also taught myself to knit, crochet and do counted cross-stitch and I love those activities still, though they are hard on my old arthritic fingers now.

      Delete
  7. I like this. I like how simple some of these things are yet make such a difference to us.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you VV! I agree, it is most often the little ordinary things we take for granted that play such an important role in our lives and that we would miss so much if they were suddenly gone!

      Delete
  8. I'm liking # 2,3 and 9

    and as someone has already said, you have the gift of stating things directly and simply. to prove my point, I am only now trying to make the rounds of the Posts, especially having read your rather nice Comment at the Doctrine. (in regards to # 9 I often indulge in the exercise of 'well if they (the people who write the blogs I have not been able to keep up and comment with') were me, would I get upset and the answer is no. cause anyone who does not identify with the feeling underlying your #9 either hasn't been writing blogs for very long or doesn't have a lot of people to keep in touch with… or something like that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Directly, simply, and always with way too many words, Clark! LOL I agree with your rationale on blog commenting and responding. I want to do it, I enjoy doing it, and I do as often and as much as I can, but then I feel sad if someone wrote a really good or meaningful post and I didn't take the time (or find it) to let them know. I could very happily blog 24/7 taking out time for only physical necessities like eating, sleeping and the ocassional bath! :-) Now if only one could get paid for that!

      Delete
  9. I heard it was nasty in your neck of the woods...We had our first measurable snowfall this morning and I am already sick of it. Bah humbug. I have to laugh, though. I was talking to Sven (our old neighbor) on the phone, who now lives in Austin and he told me about how once the whole city shut down and he couldn't figure it out. Apparently there was a slight bit of ice out. He said, "I kid you not...that weather wouldn't even have kept us prairie kids in at recess and these people were TERRIFIED to walk outside!"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it was definitely a couple bad days here as far as ice and cold go, the worst part is, as Sven notes, that no one knows how to behave when it's cold and icy. They dress inadequately, and drive worse. Cars on ice slide thru stoplights when you hit the brakes at the last moment... who knew? LOL My sisters live in South Dakota and Minnesota and laugh when I complain of cold or bad weather. I did my years of life in the "deep freeze" up there, but have lost the conditioning I grew up with. When we flew home for my father's funeral four years ago it was a -17 in Fargo, shockingly cold. Papa Bear found it most funny to see trucks hauling loads of snow out of the city because they'd run out of places to dump it! I've gotta say I don't miss that one bit... except for two days at Christmas, and we've actually had that happen here a time or two. Christmas in shirt-sleeves and brown grass will never feel very festive to me! Y'all keep the fireplace burning up there and enjoy toasty warm mittens for me! :-)

      Delete
  10. loved your list! You know, I'm often grateful for dependable cars. Not until I was married did I own a dependable car. throughout my entire twenties I had beater cars. I lived alone and worked late nights in the days before cell phones - I can remember driving home at 2:00am or later and praying I didn't get stranded on the road all alone in the dark! My AC was always out in the summer, which sucks in Texas. I will never, ever take for granted a good, dependable vehicle!

    I never cooked with my mom, but I baked with one of my aunts ALL the time and adored it. I bake with my kids now because it's a bonding experience for all of us. They love to make scrambled eggs, too. Anything to crack an egg. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I too had cars in the past that ran on rubber bands, duct tape and prayers, so I am truly grateful for the dependability of the one I have now. It is going to have to last a very long time, so I am taking good care of it.

      Baking together is such a wonderful experience! I smile at your kids loving to break eggs because my sisters and I always tried to be the one who was assigned that task! :-)

      Delete
  11. It is not the number of expensive presents under the tree that brings Christmas joy; it is the experience of love and laughter with family and friends. I don't remember Christmas presents per say, I remember the love and laughter. The good times we spent together as family. My favorite memory is making cookies for Santa with Katie Rose and her note. Dad ate those with pride. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I absolutely agree, Mary, we don't remember the gifts, we remember the time shared and the memories made. I've seen kids today who have so many presents to open that they grow weary and bored with it before finishing. I think the true spirit of giving and receiving has been lost at that point. I bet it was "Santa's" favorite job to eat those cookies made for him with such excitement and care! Those are the memories that children keep forever!

      Delete
  12. PS, I love those globes. They are so gorgeous and magical. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So do I Mary, just the cutest things! Perfect gift for a bit of holiday cheer!

      Delete
  13. Josie, I hear you on the joints issue! I have rheumatoid arthritis and some days are just harder than others. Most recently, I am thankful for my little buckwheat pillow that can be warmed up to help soothe my aching parts!

    Love the snow globe snowmen - we have something similar that was a gift from someone and our daughter just loves it!

    I am glad to know that you and your family learned your love of baking from helping your Mom. I have fond memories of learning to cook from my Mom and I have already started giving our little Kidzilla tasks to do with me in the kitchen - I think she's hooked!

    This is way belated - but like you said, life gets in the way sometimes!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have a little buckwheat pillow too, and yes, they are wonderfully soothing - such a simple, clever idea! We learn so much from our parents, and things they enjoy are likely to be pleasures for us too. Children are natural born helpers, we want to do what Mom and Dad are doing. My two sisters and I all grew up to love baking.

      Delete

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