26 November 2007

Gratitude

With Kitty Daddy off work for a couple of days for the holiday, blogging time has been in short supply, but this has been stewing in my head over the holiday. If you follow the comic strip Mutts (I read it in real-time here), you have probably already seen these quotes, but I thought they were worth repeating.

Not what we have, but what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance.
J. Petit-Senn

Who does not thank for little will not thank for much.
Estonian proverb

...the thankful heart ... will find, in every hour, some heavenly blessing.
Henry Ward Beecher

Joy is the simplest form of gratitude.
Karl Barth

No longer forward nor behind
I look in hope or fear;
But, grateful, take the good I find,
The best of now and here
John Greenleaf Whittier

We give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way.
Anonymous

If the only prayer you say in your life is
thank you,
that would suffice.
Meister Eckhart
Although I think that we need to be thankful for all we have every day, not just on Thanksgiving, the holiday gives a special day to take stock.

The whole family has been in the Madison area for a little over two years now. Between the stress of picking up and leaving a place we had lived for many years and the slow sale and ultimately low price of our house in Iowa City, it has been all too easy to focus on the things that we don't have or had left behind. However, in the last year or so, things have been settling and calming down and we are at last really feeling at home in Wisconsin, which makes it much easier for us to count our blessings. The things that I am most thankful for:
  • My family, especially my kids. Even on our craziest, most chaotic days, I am truly grateful to have these three wonderful little people in my life. They are smart, funny, affectionate, cute, and teach me more about life than anything else ever has.
  • Our pets. Although we were sad to say good-bye to Kitty Man last August, we were very lucky to have had his fuzzy brand of silliness for the time we did. Kitty Chai and Mollie Dog continue to provide us with unconditional affection and warm feet at night.
  • Our health. Other than the annoying colds and such that we fight all winter, I know we are very lucky that those are the worst we have had to face.
  • Our home. I still miss the space in our Iowa City home, but I know that we are lucky to have a roof over our head where we can all be together. Even though it is a rental, "home" is more about who lives here and how we live our lives than the actual roof and walls.
  • Friends. Although I am notoriously slow adjusting to new places, I am truly grateful for the wonderful new friends I am making in Wisconsin and in the blogosphere. I am also thankful for the old friends that I have managed to stay in touch with, in spite of my reputation for staying in touch.
Our Thanksgiving was on the quiet side, with a relatively simple meal. It was the traditional turkey dinner, but the stuffing was out of a bag and the pie came from the grocery store bakery. However, I didn't have to worry about whether the kids would have a wild night and leave me doing all the cooking even more sleep-deprived than normal! Kitty Daddy's dad joined us from the Milwaukee area and we had a lovely afternoon.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and I hope that everyone else has as much to be thankful for every day!

2 comments:

Marianne said...

Lovely post...
Glad you're settling in and feeling more comfortable in Wisconsin... and I'm thankful you are 'here'...with your Kitty Family.
Happy for you to have had such a nice Thanksgiving holiday with your loved ones :^)

Namma said...

All I can say to the "Mutts" quotes is...Amen! Sometimes all you really need is your little pink sock, i.e., something that really makes you happy. In your case, you've enumerated an abundance of things that make you happy...and they're all the most important things.