Thursday, October 29, 2015

An attitude of gratitude, part two

Yesterday, I finished my ten-day experiment in keeping a gratitude journal. I have to say that it was a fascinating experience. I tried to name five things each day for which I was grateful. My goal was to be grateful for different things each day.

On Sunday, I said:I am grateful for the sun, the moon, and the stars.
I am grateful for music.
I am grateful for friends who care and who understand and who refrain from judging and who encourage me to do the same.
I am grateful for delicious food.
I am grateful for storytellers.

On the topic of the sun, the moon, and the stars, yesterday was the full moon. It was pretty but there was a good deal of haze in front of the moon. I guess that I could be thankful for the haze and the clouds, which give an air of mystery to the moon.

Day two of my gratitude journal. I said that I was thankful for literacy, fresh apples, picked from the tree, shoelaces that stay tied, and the people who read my articles and blogs.

Literacy is the best. I somehow managed to teach myself to read at the age of four. Reading opens doors to other places, times, and worlds. I have found myself transported to very far and wildly wonderful places through the magic of books. The book that I am currently reading is The White Castle, by Orhan Pamuk. It is set in Istanbul, Turkey, in the seventeenth century. How else, except through a book, could I ever go to seventeenth century Turkey?

On the third day, I was grateful for hot showers, the cat's meows (she has her own language), knowing how to read music, a delicious grapefruit, and bone china teacups. It is fun to have a tea party and drink tea out of a teacup decorated with colorful flowers. 

On the fourth day, I said that I was grateful for a garden to tend in mid-October, rummy jack (a game with tiles that I play with my mother), honey from a local beekeeper, eggs from a local chicken farmer, and soft, warm pajamas on a cold night. Honey for the tea, eggs for eating and baking, warm pajamas to wear after spending several hours outside, digging up the last of the weeds.

On the fifth day of my ten-day gratitude journal experience, I said that I was grateful for large Halloween decorations, my painting class, rulers, pencils, and paint brushes, dark chocolate, crochet hooks and colorful yarn. I am thankful for all tools that encourage creativity.

On day six, I said that I was thankful for 18th century Viennese music, my digital walkman, cheese graters, the washer and dryer, and pots and pans. I had spent much of the day making applesauce and peach-pear sauce. The laundry was going while I worked in the kitchen. I was very happy that the machine did all of the work so that I was free to chop and cook fruit!

On day seven, my list of things to be thankful for included eyeglasses, my lovely journal, decorated with a sunflower (with a beaded center), white pumpkins, my singing voice, and storytelling and storytellers. I love to sing. It is another way to tell stories.

On the eighth day of this gratitude journey, I said that I was thankful for the quiet of early morning, my telephoto lens, comfortable shoes, my editor at the Island Dispatch, and oboes and bassoons. Wind instruments make such a wonderfully mellow sound. It is a pleasure to hear them.

On the penultimate day of the challenge (OK, I like the word "penultimate," which means "next to last"), I said that I was thankful for brightly colored leaves, the blueness of the sky and the river, wild grapes, squirrels and their antics, and curiosity. Having curiosity means that you will rarely be bored. You'll be fascinated by everything around you. It is a good trait. Sometimes I wonder if schools try to teach students to rein in their curiosity. But that's another topic for another day.

Yesterday, I said that I was thankful for my hairdresser, water bottles, wild grapes, herbal tea, and butterfly boys.

I feel as if the gratitude journal took me to a place where I could be thankful for everything around me... things as large as the sky and as small as a ladybug. It's been a good experience. I will do it again. 

What about you? For what are you grateful? Please use the comments section to tell about some of the things and/or people for which you are grateful.

4 comments:

Bethany Lotulelei said...

This is wonderful, Alice! Someone gave me a gratitude once, but I wasn't very good about writing in it. On days that are hard I remind myself that God has gotten me through every day so far, and I start thinking about all the things I have to be grateful for. It is amazing how it can lift my spirits!

Chprchick said...

Excellent!!! I'm thankful I had the opportunity to know about your gratitude journal at the beginning and to see where it took you. It IS amazing when we just focus, isn't it? There is so much to be thankful if we approach life with a sense of gratitude instead of looking for the negative things.

peppylady (Dora) said...

Nice pumpkin did you grow it. There so much to be Thankful for...All of veggies in our stew came out of our garden.
Coffee is on

Alyce Eccentrick said...

Thank you, all, for the comments! I am so grateful for you, too! Alas, I did not grow the pumpkin. My vegetable garden was a dismal failure. Next year, I'll try adding compost and raised rows. The flower garden in front, on the other hand, was wild and wonderfully alive.
Mmmm. Stew.

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