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Gratefulness and Smiles

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We took the boy (4-1/2) to big church today for the first time, and he behaved very well. He circled pictures on the sermon notes for nonreaders, which took about 5 minutes, then drew pictures. Every little bit he would look up and watch the pastor during the sermon. But he didn't talk or fuss.

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One of my brothers was in a toxic marriage - things were sour from the getgo.  He filed for divorce last fall and she moved out Jan 1.  Divorce is still not final, but ...he's been hanging out with a girl from our old neighborhood.  Not sure how serious it is because he told her early on that he only thought of her as a friend.  Not sure what the status is now, but they are still hanging out and doing stuff together.  They both treat each other nicely and are supportive, my nephew tells me that they laugh like crazy together.

 

I'm glad for both of them - regardless of what "it" is.  They both have spent way too long in a relationships that were unhealthy and destructive for them.  I am genuinely pleased that they each make an effort to be considerate and kind to one another. 

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Gee...I'm grateful that I got to see so much figure skating during World's competition this past week.  It started on Wednesday on NBC Sports Network and continued through today.  NBC is usually very chintzy with the time they'll allow skating competitions to be shown so seeing many of the Americans' programs was new to me much less the skaters from other countries.  The downside, of course is that I got so nervous watching my favorites that I started eating and eating some more and then some more after that.  So I gained a few pounds...but it was worth it.

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Have you seen the black and white photos that have just one splash of color in them?

 

I was thinking, my life could be a black and white photo. It's complete; there is beauty and strength in the picture, and I really do like looking at it these days. Recently I've made a new friend, and the best way to describe how this friend fits into the photo would be to be the splash of color.  That big hit of yellow that sort of makes everything a little more interesting, a little brighter, a little happier.  It's really neat.

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JTMacc99, what a lovely thought.

Stuff like that is why I had to move out of the accounting department to where I am now. My mind wanders into the creative side a little too often for comfort on that side of the building. 

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Despite having a long* and varied life, there is one moment in particular that was nothing important but which I'll always remember. It was a perfect Spring day; my backyard had a large cherry tree. The sun was warm and a breeze had wafted through the tree, sending a cascade of small pink petals down to the ground. I was walking out to my garage and stood there for a couple of minutes, head tilted up and arms outstretched, letting the blossoms and sun and smell of the breeze fill my heart.

 

It was a shot out of any number of movies! Probably happened 20 years ago by now, but if Phoebe Buffay ever told me to go to my happy place, that moment in time would be it.

 

 

 

 

* As Garry Shandling said in his last public appearance on Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee: the only time someone in his/her sixties is considered to be young is if they die. "Awww. 65 was so young!"

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What a great thread and an awesome read.  

 

I'm grateful for so much in my life.  My adorable house here went on the market last Friday and was under contract within four hours.  My house in Denver went under contract the same day, three weeks pre-market to a really cute couple who sent us a picture of their dog along with the offer, which I thought was awesome.  

 

I have finally worked out a truce with my riding mower, which is really quite the victory and made me feel like a conquering hero.  

 

I'm also grateful for my dogs, my husband, my son....yes I noted that order too , but they all hold  the same place at the top of the list.  They're very good dogs though, so .... ;-)  

 

And I get to move to Southern California and be by the ocean again, for the first time since I was 18, lo those many years ago.  

 

Also?  Matte Sunscreen.  Seriously great stuff.  Plus, I scored some good volumizing shampoo at Whole Foods that smells like Mango and Papaya.  

 

It's Spring.  The weather is pleasant, things are in bloom.  Life is pretty good. 

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This is a good thread.  It reminds us of the things we should be thankful for (e.g., a memory of watching petals fall from a tree years ago--that's a great memory, lordonia).  We all need to have a memory like that, that we can focus on when the U-Know-What hits the fan. Mine is from childhood when I was playing one winter day in the woods by a gurgling stream with a friend & it started to snow.The sound of the snow hitting the leaves & looking so beautiful & serene--that's something I haven't forgotten. I remembered it a few years later in high school when we read Robert Frost's Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening.

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I was behind a truck this morning and the person in the passenger seat was doing some serious seat dancing and head banging.  This played out like a silent movie to me because I couldn't hear what they were listening too, but it made me smile thinking of all the times me and my friends would be bopping down the road when our favorite song came on.

 

And how nice it was to just have a song make us that happy.

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I know! The other day, the person ahead of me at the drive-thru was dancing in her seat, which I found amusing. Until I saw the kid in the front seat with her doing the same moves. Family car dancing for the win.

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After my heated 'pet peeve' ,I'm glad I have this space to share my reason for gratefulness. Today was a beautiful day outside with 'perfect' weather so I'm grateful I was able to take my elderly mother for a drive to enjoy it- especially after a recent health crisis on her part that I thought would make it certain I'd never share any more time with her.

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Glad you and Mom got to have a nice drive - I'm sure it was something she appreciated too!

 

One of my favorite memories growing up is when we would go to NH to visit my Dad's family.  A lot of time my Mom would want to go on drives before we went to someone's house for dinner.  Often, we'd stop to get ice cream literally on the way to dinner which to us was a huge treat!  And totally not normal because Mom was pretty structured in our diets so having ice cream before dinner?  Unheard of!

 

I finally figured it out when I was in my 20s - Mom loved the ice cream from the little roadside stands there.  She never ate a lot of ice cream or other treats at home, so none of us suspected how bad her jones for black walnut ice cream could get.

 

Dad was an easier read - he always liked treats.  So if I went some place with him, he'd often get me a "treat".  I never understood why he got me a medium or large ice cream because Mom never did.  But Dad would "help" clean up the ice cream dripping because I ate too slow and then would offer to finish when I was full.  I was about 8 when I figured that out.

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One of my favorite memories growing up is when we would go to NH to visit my Dad's family.  A lot of time my Mom would want to go on drives before we went to someone's house for dinner.  Often, we'd stop to get ice cream literally on the way to dinner which to us was a huge treat!  And totally not normal because Mom was pretty structured in our diets so having ice cream before dinner?  Unheard of!

 

What a sweet memory. Do families go for Sunday drives any more? My grandparents would take my sister and me in the 50s; this was in San Diego so we drove into outside the city and went rock hunting. Would elementary age kids these day enjoy that, I wonder?

 

 

Metamorphosis II by Philip Glass.

 

You made me look it up! Beautiful.

Edited by lordonia
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What a sweet memory. Do families go for Sunday drives any more? My grandparents would take my sister and me in the 50s; this was in San Diego so we drove into outside the city and went rock hunting. Would elementary age kids these day enjoy that, I wonder?

 

We don't go for drives, but we did go for a walk last Sunday. Well, two of us walked. The youngest of us rode in his little red wagon. And we had a scavenger hunt on the way and tried to spot various things like yellow flowers, emergency vehicles, red cars and so on.

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Got some terrible and tragic news last week about my mom's health condition. I've told a few people about it, and I'm flooded with awe at how wonderful people are being. People sharing their own stories with me, offering their words of wisdom and comfort. Asking to help in any way they can, from cooking meals for us to being willing to step on the next flight out to help care for her. For all the bad stuff that has happened, there are still some shining souls out there, and I'm incredibly grateful for them. 

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We just got back from a trip up through Maryland, Pennsylvania and New York State (with a side trip to CT) and I must say that the people who waited on us at several fast food places along the way (and diners) were so nice and cheerful.  We love to stop at the Wendy's in Hazelton (maybe the West Hazelton exit??) on I-81 because it's halfway there, I guess.  But when you're traveling on these awful interstates, it means a lot to get off of them and be greeted by friendly faces.  These folks don't make a lot of money but they work hard and so I think it's pretty wonderful that they can be so nice (yeah maybe they'd get fired if they weren't nice--but still...).  Anyway--I was impressed and appreciative!

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That's so nice, annzeepark914. I don't want to say it's unusual to get pleasant service, but it is really appreciated.

 

I recently wrote a letter to Subway to laud a woman at my local store who is always so cheerful and helpful. I mean, dealing with the public's sandwich peccadilloes can't be easy. I told her I appreciated her attitude and she said, "Well, I try." And I think she does try, as in makes a deliberate effort to put forth her best self every day.

 

Another nice story is about a server we had at a casual restaurant. She was probably in her 60s and very present and calm. She handled the order quickly and competently, including a separate take-out meal. I usually leave a tip in cash but didn't have change and her smiles made me happy, so I left her $20 on a $30 bill. I don't make a habit of over tipping, so this was unusual for me. While I was waiting in line to pay at the register, she came up to me and offered the $20 back, asking if I'd made a mistake. I mean, what a sweet person! I tried to pay her attitude forward the rest of the week but fell off the wagon pretty quickly.

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Got some terrible and tragic news last week about my mom's health condition.

 

Very sorry to hear that, but am glad that so many kind people have stepped forward with support. May that continue to bring you some peace.

 

My gratitude is for something very simple and maybe some will find it silly, but here goes: I'm grateful for the beautiful walk I had yesterday. Despite two run-ins with rude people the bottom line is that it was a beautiful day, nice breeze, and I took a little offshoot trail and was treated to seeing a nesting turkey vulture and a whole bunch of seabirds (don't know what species?) having a conference. And then on my way home i saw a colony of swallows feeding their young. So I'm just grateful for that day, and for being able and healthy enough to get out and enjoy it.

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I'm awfully glad to be able to set up my custom home page here! Not being able to find anything was a dark couple of days.

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While driving home a few minutes ago along the highway that runs along the beach, I saw the most beautiful double rainbow.  I think it was the brightest one I'd ever seen.  It stretched from the water line along the horizon, way above the beach and disappeared behind the downtown across the highway.  It was behind me, so I had to make a u-turn and pull off at a parking area at the beach so I could get out and watch it for a few minutes (I didn't care that it was raining and windy).  It lasted a long time, too.  I kept sneaking glances at it through my rear view mirror all the way home.

Edited by BooksRule
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2 hours ago, BooksRule said:

While driving home a few minutes ago along the highway that runs along the beach, I saw the most beautiful double rainbow.  I think it was the brightest one I'd ever seen.  It stretched from the water line along the horizon, way above the beach and disappeared behind the downtown across the highway.  It was behind me, so I had to make a u-turn and pull off at a parking area at the beach so I could get out and watch it for a few minutes (I didn't care that it was raining and windy).  It lasted a long time, too.  I kept sneaking glances at it through my rear view mirror all the way home.

I remember the first time my daughter ever saw an actual rainbow, instead of a picture or drawing of one. She was 4, I think, and we were sitting out on our deck after an afternoon of rainstorms. My husband and I were just hanging out, talking, and she came outside to join us. She looked over, saw it, and yelled, "IT'S A RAINBOW!!!" and ran inside and made her older sister and grandma come out to look at it. It was a very bright rainbow that spanned the entire sky -- really pretty.

Her reaction reminded me that rainbows really are beautiful, and now every time I see one, I stop and look at it, and think of how excited she was to see one for the first time.

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I love the feeling of sitting down on a couch next to a person you care about and just leaning into each other. The warmth of your affection. The comfort and safety of that connection. It's like the relationship version of cinnamon buns just out of the oven.

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Hmmm...why do I think JTMacc99 is speaking of a particular person mentioned in recent weeks?  And if so, let me say with total sincerity, how happy I am for you!

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Same person.

And it's funny, we just got back from lunch and I'm actively moping around because I just figured out that between our two schedules the next date is sometime in 2017. Or like three weeks from now. One of those. 

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23 hours ago, JTMacc99 said:

Same person.

And it's funny, we just got back from lunch and I'm actively moping around because I just figured out that between our two schedules the next date is sometime in 2017. Or like three weeks from now. One of those. 

Lol.  3 weeks or seven months, it's all the same huh?  Too cute :)

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Yeah congrats! That's really super :)

 

I'm grateful my cold is passing, finally. This one scared me and had me in bed for days with a massive headache and a desire to sleep. Makes you appreciate having some "get up and go" again.

I also have a lot of delicious ice cream in my freezer waiting to be eaten when my throat isn't so sore. Gotta be grateful for that!

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What brands? I've been meaning to try some new kinds. There's a sour cream and dark cherry ice cream at my work cafeteria  that is intriguing. Also a bramble berry crisp ice cream that sounds refreshing. 

I love gelato as well. And the bakery in the ground floor of my apt building makes small batch frozen custard each day. The red velvet is really good. 

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Today at a Dollar Tree, Mom wanted to go in, but at the last minute realized she couldn't.  I left her clinging to the door while I retrieved the car.  

On my way back to Mom, this woman and her two kids were in the way.  I'm cursing inside, oh, please, get out of my way.  

The next thing I know, she is helping Mom into the car, telling me she saw our need a mile away.  

Thank you, Good Samaritan.  

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My best friend died two years ago yesterday.  Despite the pain his loss caused me, I am reminded every day to be grateful that he was my best friend for almost 25 years.  His joy and enthusiasm for life was infectious.  Even when cancer was ravaging his body.  He was two weeks shy of his 38th birthday when he left us.

It still hurts -- I expect it always will -- but I wanted to remind myself that, especially with the deaths of so many legendary artists this year, those we love are never truly gone.  

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 You're right, DD. Just as I am reminded every day how lucky I am to have had my father in my life for as long as he was in this world. Amazingly, he actually coped for better than I would have predicted during the last part of his life when he had increasing physical challenges and even became more empathetic. He was by no means a saint but the many things I observed him say and do down the years have proven a good guide since.

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22 hours ago, DisneyBoy said:

I have a lot of delicious ice cream in my freezer waiting to be eaten when my throat isn't so sore. Gotta be grateful for that!

 

20 hours ago, Petunia13 said:

What brands? I've been meaning to try some new kinds. There's a sour cream and dark cherry ice cream at my work cafeteria  that is intriguing. Also a bramble berry crisp ice cream that sounds refreshing. 

My favorite ice cream flavor is Grape-Nuts. (I get it at my local ice cream parlor.) I also like wee sandwiches with vanilla Häagen Dazs and Pillsbury crescent rolls.

You might get some brand &/or flavor ideas in the Everything Else > Food > Ice Cream thread: 

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I worked at a roadside ice cream stand in my youth.  "Grape nuts" was our code for "here comes a bus of old people" because no one else bought the stuff.   Also, cherry vanilla and rum raisin.  That's Old People Ice Cream : )

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1 hour ago, Quof said:

That's Old People Ice Cream : )

I love old people food: picked beets, Welsh rarebit, boiled eggs, Indian pudding, oatmeal, ribbon candy…

Speaking of ice cream, when I eat Häagen Dazs single-serving cups I like to pretend I'm a giant eating an entire pint.

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1 hour ago, editorgrrl said:

Speaking of ice cream, when I eat Häagen Dazs single-serving cups I like to pretend I'm a giant eating an entire pint.

Does your stomach pretend it's full, too?  :)

I'm happy that the forecast is for rain the next few days, which means being in the 80s instead of 90s. My cooling bill thanks you!

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On 4/20/2016 at 6:20 PM, lordonia said:

Another nice story is about a server we had at a casual restaurant. She was probably in her 60s and very present and calm. She handled the order quickly and competently, including a separate take-out meal. I usually leave a tip in cash but didn't have change and her smiles made me happy, so I left her $20 on a $30 bill. I don't make a habit of over tipping, so this was unusual for me. While I was waiting in line to pay at the register, she came up to me and offered the $20 back, asking if I'd made a mistake. I mean, what a sweet person! I tried to pay her attitude forward the rest of the week but fell off the wagon pretty quickly.

That reminds me of the time I was going to work in downtown Manhattan on a very windy day, and my very expensive seamless tri-focal glasses blew right off my face and across the street and I didn't know where they had landed.  Finally a man operating a food truck found them under the truck.  I came back later with $20 for him.  He insisted that he didn't want the money.

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The part of New England I'm in hasn't seen the sun since April.  I went out for lunch today and there was actual blue sky up there.  I had to take a picture, because of course it's gone again now.  But it was there, and I can prove it!

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A quick drive-by thanks to say I love You Tube, especially the "related" videos that can suck me down some heretofore unknown rabbit hole for an hour. The things I've learned!

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Oh Lord yes...YouTube. It's been so amazing looking up random things I once enjoyed, or especially for watching old interviews or commercials or shows that aren't available anymore. I hate geo-blocking and the commercials we're stuck with now, but it's still a fantastic community-created resource.

My ice cream life is super tame compared to all of yours. Grape nuts is a flavor?! I thought it was just a cereal. I have two tubs of locally-produced mint chocolate chip. If my throat weren't still sore, I'd be in it by now.

Blergh, I feel for your situation. A week ago today, a man I came to know passed away. I knew he wasn't well but didn't realize the extent. The last two times I saw him he was overflowing with gratitude for our friendship, which was limited to occasional run-ins and chats. He'd lived a fascinating life and spoken frequently of his celebrity encounters and the friends who had made his career fulfilling. In our brief chats, especially the recent ones, he gave me so much. I hope he knows I'm grateful. He was so happy and friendly, always. Never a frown. I'm still processing I guess. I don't want to think much about it. Tried to go on with my week as usual, but he's there in my thoughts. I am so lucky to have known him.

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22 minutes ago, DisneyBoy said:

My ice cream life is super tame compared to all of yours. Grape nuts is a flavor?! I thought it was just a cereal. I have two tubs of locally-produced mint chocolate chip. If my throat weren't still sore, I'd be in it by now.

Grape-Nuts ice cream reminds me of my mom's Grape-Nuts pudding. (Like rice pudding.) And I get to delude myself that it's health food!

Maybe it's a regional flavor? I'm in New England, and only see it at ice cream parlors—never in stores.

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2 hours ago, DisneyBoy said:

Blergh, I feel for your situation. A week ago today, a man I came to know passed away. I knew he wasn't well but didn't realize the extent. The last two times I saw him he was overflowing with gratitude for our friendship, which was limited to occasional run-ins and chats. He'd lived a fascinating life and spoken frequently of his celebrity encounters and the friends who had made his career fulfilling. In our brief chats, especially the recent ones, he gave me so much. I hope he knows I'm grateful. He was so happy and friendly, always. Never a frown. I'm still processing I guess. I don't want to think much about it. Tried to go on with my week as usual, but he's there in my thoughts. I am so lucky to have known him.

He sounds lovely. 

I keep trying to come up with something I can't find on the internet or YouTube as proof I have had an original thought.  Sadly, I have not.  I was thwarted today because someone has done tortilla origami. 

But, I am heartened to learn that no matter what bizarro idea I have, someone has already had it AND made a video about it!

Edited by DeLurker
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4 hours ago, DeLurker said:

I keep trying to come up with something I can't find on the internet or YouTube as proof I have had an original thought.  Sadly, I have not.  I was thwarted today because someone has done tortilla origami. 

Ha! You made me look! Was it the Flex Mex one?

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I was just out mowing my lawn when a man and 2 girls, perhaps 5 and 7 years old, came along selling Girl Guide cookies.   The man said "You sure are working hard.   You're doing a great job.   You deserve some cookies."  Well, the way to my heart is flattery and cookies.  I said "You know, you could finish the mowing while I go inside to get some money."  When I got inside, I heard the mower start, and looked out to see the father mowing my lawn.  He only did a few laps in the few minutes I was inside.  In hindsight, I should have stayed inside longer.  

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I dislike enforced or mandatory jollity, games, contests, and celebrations at work, so this made me smile:

Officially, Your Employer Can’t Force You To Be Happy At Work

"The NLRB’s ruling last week said that requiring employees to maintain a “positive work environment” is too restrictive, as the workplace can sometimes get contentious. You can’t keep your employees from arguing. The key here is recognizing that being positive at work is good for business, but what’s good for business is not always good for labor.

The NLRB says that workers have a right to express negativity at work because they have a right to be unhappy with their jobs."

 

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I'm going to sound totally shallow, but I'm grateful for a hairstyling website I use when I need a haircut.  For free, you can upload a picture of yourself and "try on" hundreds of haircuts, styles, and colors.  I get bored with my hair at least once a year and it's a great way to make sure that the cut/color I'm thinking of will actually look good.

Because getting a haircut can be terrifying.  Amirite, ladies?  ;-)

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