Category Archives: Gratitude Friday

Gratitude Friday

1. Morning walks. Each day, the darkness lasts for a few more minutes than the day before. This week we saw deer, a beaver, a heron, and something coming towards us in the dark — two glowing eyes, about the height of a fox, cat, or even a coyote, coming fast until we stopped and I yelled and it turned off the path. This is the time of year we need to be really careful because there are bears, and with the wild fires, there have also been moose and cougars, not anything you want to run into in the dark, if at all. As much as I hate not having Sam, I am enjoying walking just one dog, which is so much easier.

Heron

Beaver

2. Wild Writing with Laurie. We started a new season this morning. Some of my favorite people in the whole world were there. I still shake my head and smile when I think how ridiculous I was, thinking I could do without this practice, this teacher, these people.3. Practice. I can say with certainty that without it, I wouldn’t still be here. The foundation I cultivated over the past 12 years; in particular the trio of meditation, yoga asana, and writing; has saved me, again and again.4. Good food. One of my favorite things since retiring, and in particular during the lockdown of the pandemic, is cooking and eating good food. This week I made what’s most likely the last of this season’s pickles, because we probably won’t be getting many more cucumbers, and peanut butter cookies, (if you have a good recipe for chewy peanut butter cookies, post the link in the comments or send me an email). I braved meeting a friend for tacos at a place with a big open outdoor area this week, only the third time I’ve eaten food someone outside our house made and the first time I stayed and ate on site, and while I loved seeing her and the tacos were so good, it still felt so weird and risky.5. My tiny family. Eric left me kitchen counter love notes in two locations this week — one where I see it when I come out to get my phone, and a second bonus one with the coffee to surprise me later in the morning when I made a cup. Ringo got a new toy, a possum, and he loves it. It’s so weird how both Obi and Sam could have cared less about toys, but both Dexter and Ringo fell so in love with each new stuffed, squeaky baby. It’s both the sweetest and saddest thing ever how he keeps curling up on Sam’s couch. One of my favorite things to do with Ringo to remember Sam is to “sing,” which Sam did but wasn’t very good at and Ringo loves so much. Bonus joy: getting to see Mikalina THREE times this week, seeing Carrie in person, Chloe’ being back from her travels so I could finally give her the birthday present I bought her (and she loved it, just like I knew she would), texting with my mom and brother, Friday which weirdly still has that same end of the week feel even though I’m retired, fall because it’s my favorite season, black walnut ice cream, getting in the pool, sitting in the infrared sauna with Eric, grocery pick-up, finally deciding what to do with our third car that we don’t need anymore (we are donating it to Eric’s school so the students in the auto repair program can use it to learn stuff, to practice on — my dad’s a mechanic, so this makes me extra happy), falling golden leaves, long naps, reading in bed at night while Ringo and Eric sleep.

Gratitude Friday

1. Fall in Colorado. It was a more abrupt shift between seasons than we typically experience. Usually it slowly gets cooler and darker, the green fades and starts to turn gold and orange and red. This year, with our early snow following right after a day over 90 degrees made things a little different. One day it was summer, the next winter, and a few after that, it was suddenly fully fall. The cooler weather and changing colors and the way the natural world starts to slow down has always been my favorite time of year.
2. Fall garden. We are still getting tomatoes, and the pumpkins and rhubarb are ripe. This is the first year the rhubarb was big enough to actually pick and use. I had about two cups, so I googled “rhubarb recipes” and found this muffin recipe from Martha Stewart — so good!

Pumpkin covered in wild fire ash

Pumpkin covered in wildfire ash

3. Morning walks. It’s been so dark, I was afraid I wouldn’t get any good pictures, but I did. Just about when we get to the ponds by the river, the sun starts to come up. And as much as I miss Sam (like crazy) and how weird it feels to have just one dog, walking just one dog is SO much easier. I’m trying to enjoy it while I can.

4. Support. This past week was a doozy. I’m trying to keep it together, but the fires, global pandemic, police violence, the quickly approaching election with all its possible outcomes, etc. has me on edge. And yet, texting with my mom and brother, writing and hanging out with Mikalina, my therapist, practice, reading dharma books, napping, getting in the pool, going on walks, listening to podcasts, etc. are so helpful.5. My tiny family. As hard as it may be sometimes to do my work on my laptop at the kitchen table, not always have direct access to my office and my stuff, I still like having Eric home more often. Ringo has been spending some time on Sam’s couch, which is both sweet and sad. Bonus joy: tea with Janice, lunch with Carrie, aqua aerobics, sitting in the infrared sauna with Eric, listening to audio books and podcasts, how cool it is in the morning, cooking, making a meal from scratch without a recipe just using what we have, having all the laundry done and put away, Ringo’s belly and toe and razor burn all healed up, “singing” with Ringo and Eric, grocery pick up, yard time, being invited to write something for the next issue of Mabel Magazine, clean air and water, all those who continue to risk their own health and safety so that we have food and shelter and healthcare.