Happy Thanksgiving! This week a friend of mine shared that when she feels kind of down, she tries to take a minute and think about things for which she’s thankful. I love that practice. I hope that I’m a grateful person all year long, not just today. I try to be. I was raised to say “please” and “thank you” after all.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I would love to know what you’re thankful for too! Please comment in the comments section.
1. Health. I never want to take this for granted. Last year around this time I had a terrible back injury which was the result of over straining while lifting a very heavy curtain onto a curtain rod. I didn’t blog about it because it was a really dark time. I did not realize how a back muscle spasm could make you sweat, tingle all over and almost pass out. I was really scared and thought I was dying–having a heart attack. I ended up in the emergency room not one, but two times that day (after a trip to urgent care first). My back feels great today and I have no other health concerns.
2. Horse Hubby. Mark is quite a character. Many of you know I had the worst time dating. So bad, in fact, I have been challenged to write a dating memoir and it’s in the works. Met lots of peculiar men and some nice guys, but there was just no special spark. Mark can be a little peculiar (his Halloween obsession is over the top with fives changes of costume that time he was Forrest Gump throughout the various scenes of the movie), but he is also nice and there is a spark.
3. Awesome parents. I can’t brag too much about my mom and dad because they would be embarrassed, but believe me when I say you would be hard pressed to find more generous, loving people.
4. Super Sisters. I am the baby sister in the family. My older sisters live far away from me–in Florida and Illinois, and I miss them tons. They are funny and fun and I love being with them.
5. Special nieces, nephews, and step kids. I respect their privacy so won’t say anything too embarrassing or mushy. We have much to be proud of with this younger generation.
6. Old friends (and when I say “old” I mean I’ve known them a long time). This is a cool story: so when I was little, I was extremely shy. My mom and one of her friends decided that they would pray that I would make friends. Well, that prayer has been answered over and over!
7. New friends (you know who you are!). The thing that’s amazing about friends, is you can really never have too many and just like Jello, there’s always room for more. This past year I’ve made friends with people I would have never met were it not for Instagram (sounds weird, right?!).
8. My faith. I am really grateful that we live in a country where we can worship (or choose not to) freely. I can go to church or say I’m a Christian with no fear of reprisal. My faith plays a large role in my everyday life, but I am generally private about it because this is a horse blog, not a faith-based blog.
9. My home. I have to admit, I like my house, but don’t love it. We bought the worst house we could afford on the best street back in 2010. It’s come a loooong way, but I still see all the things I want to change and improve. So this is an exercise in gratitude right here: “I’m thankful for my house even though its landscaping is a haphazard mess and the sky light looks like it’s from the 1970s. And there is no molding around the windows in the dining room.” It is warm, it is spacious. It has a great kitchen layout. And two of the three toilets flush properly. LOL! (At the time of this writing we need someone to figure out why the third keeping running and running after flushing–we’ve tried the trick with lifting off the top piece and jiggling that little lever, etc. No dice.)
10. My dogs!!! I love my Golden Retriever Tigger and Doberman Missie so much my heart could burst! They make me laugh every day and they are truly my best friends.
11. Knight! I love my horse. He’s a good boy and he’s very pretty. He tries very hard and he’s made some good progress this year in the being-chill-while-approaching-and-leaving-a jump category. And his canter departure is getting quite effortless. 2018 will be the year of flawless lead changes. I hope. Even if it doesn’t come to pass, every time I’m in the saddle I have a ball.
12. Riding! I know that number 11 and 12 might seems synonymous but they’re not. I love Knight, and I love riding him, but I am grateful for riding in general because it is the most fun a person can have.
13. A full pantry and refrigerator. I do not take food for granted. There are countless people around the globe who don’t know where their next meal will come from. It’s hard to believe that fact when I can walk into a grocery store less than a mile from my home and buy whatever I like. Wow! We are blessed.
14. A car that has a carpool lane sticker. Yes, I get to outsmart LA traffic. I have one of those prized green stickers that means because I have an energy-efficient vehicle, I can take the HOV lane even if I’m driving by myself. This has changed my life over the last year.
15. Reliable transportation. I’m not a car person, but I am also grateful that I have reliable transportation to get me around town.
16. My teaching job. I don’t talk much in detail about being a middle school teacher, but trust me, if you’re searching for a career where you will never be bored, try teaching. The days fly by and there’s always something going on.
17. My barn family. They are a good bunch of people. High on care for horses and also kindness, low on drama. What could be better?
18. Mild SoCal winters. At the risk of making those of you in colder climes hate me, I won’t say a lot on this one, but there is no winter dread when the sun is shining and the flowers are blooming here. It was about 90 degrees here in Orange County today. I overhead women at the barn talking about how they miss being able to wear boots and sweaters and winter coats.
19. Blogging! I have so much fun blogging, meeting people through blogging, trying out equestrian products. This past year I got to try out Cowboy Mounted Shooting through going to the American Horse Publications annual conference. I had a blast (terrible pun, but I couldn’t resist).
20. Pumpkin pie and mashed potatoes. I can’t think of more glorious flavors than creamy, dreamy mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie which I can’t even describe. This year we merged several carrots into our mashed potatoes which gives it a pretty, orangey color and extra sweetness. And we’ve skipped pumpkin pie in favor of a brownie baked into an Oreo cookie pie shell.
Don’t worry, Pumpkin Pie, I’ll catch you at Christmas! <wink, wink>
Your Turn: Please share your thankful thoughts. What are you grateful for today?
Did you check out my Ultimate Gift Guide for Thoroughbred Lovers? If you’re doing any shopping this time of year for someone whose heart beats OTTB, I hope you’ll be inspired.
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