Category Archives: Gratitude Friday

Gratitude Friday

1. Flowers in the bathroom. I bought these daffodils and the very next day it snowed. We’ve had a really mild winter so far this year, but it’s still a little cold and a lot dark so I’m craving sunshine, warmth, citrus, and flowers.

2. Tuesday was my last first day of the semester at CSU! I feel pretty good about it. I had a realization this morning that if the expectations about the quality and quantity of work are going to so far exceed the compensation for said work, I’d rather spend my days writing and teaching yoga, meditation, and writing, and spending more time cooking, reading, swimming, working in my garden, and being with my husband and dogs. And yes, I absolutely understand that the only reason I can make such a choice is because of my big fat privilege.

3. Four years ago yesterday, I taught my first paid yoga class in my friend Stacey’s basement. That group of humans is still one of my favorite classes ever. They brought laughter and love to something I easily could have taken too seriously. Feeling some major gratitude – for them, for that opportunity, for my practice, for the privilege of teaching, for all my students who show up just as they are and allow me to hold space for them, for how far I’ve come and hopefully how far I will still go.

4. Facebook memories of the first month with Ringo. Some of the memories aren’t happy. They are about how Sam was sick and we didn’t know why or if he was going to make it, and others are about how hard it was to have such an energetic, demanding, mouthy, smart puppy and all the things I did wrong. But everything else is all “look at how cute and tiny he was!”

5. My tiny family. They really are the best thing, as essential for my survival as sleep or water.

Bonus joy: tea, treats, and talk with a friend who can make me cry and also laugh multiple times in the same conversation, aqua aerobics, sleeping (a regular night, sleeping in or a nap, doesn’t really matter), all the good TV and books and podcasts — there is not enough time for all of the goodness!, Pilates and how much I laugh in those classes (it counts as core work), teaching yoga, yoga teacher training, good people, buying groceries (this is one of the times I am most aware of how privileged, how lucky I am), bran muffins with dried raspberries, butternut squash soup, split pea soup, tomato bisque soup (I am on a soup kick right now), our new Instapot and all the yummy stuff Eric is cooking with it, a good internet connection, seeing Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo last night (watch their documentary, it’s so good).

Gratitude Friday

1. Morning walks. Because it’s been so dry and Sam has been walking further, we’ve been going by the river and around the ponds this past week. I can’t wait until it gets lighter in the morning again so I can get some good pictures. For now, the sun is only just coming up when we are on our way back.

2. Yummy food and company. I’m heading over to a friend’s this afternoon for tea, and I’m bringing snacks.

3. Sweet Sam, and Red Sage Vets. With their help, Sam is up to walking five miles a day, and he seems to not be getting as stiff or sore. He’ll probably never go for another 10 mile run, but I’m happy he can go as much as this.

4. Ringo Blue. I’m super jealous that he loves Eric more than me, even though Eric has totally earned it.

5. This guy. A few years ago we started buying packages for the Lincoln Center where you pick five shows from their full season. Usually there is one we really, really want to see, one that we didn’t really care about that turns out to be amazing, a few more that are good, and one that’s just “meh” or even a dud. Portland Cello Project this year was brilliant, and this one (Friends! The Musical Parody) was “meh” – I have a complicated relationship with the original show and much of the cast had either just graduated from theater programs or previously worked cruise ships (not that there’s anything wrong with that), but there were other people in the audience losing their minds with joy. Eric and I have a nerdy tradition of taking selfies with the programs and texting them to our good friend to prove we really do leave the house and go out at night.

Bonus joy: a big glass of clean cool water, sleeping in, yoga, aqua aerobics, swimming, Pilates, sitting in the sauna with Eric, good TV (I’m embarrassed to tell you what I’ve been watching lately – so bad, it’s good), meditating and writing in the morning, orange juice, our new Instapot (mostly because Eric keeps trying new recipes), a really soft tshirt, computer glasses, owls hooting, having dear friends whose houses are within walking distance, having dear friends who are just a text or Zoom call away, the growing appreciation for the privilege of having a car I can get in and go anywhere I want any time I want, reading in bed at night before I go to sleep.

Gratitude Friday

1. Morning walks, although this morning’s wasn’t quite as long or as much fun – what was supposed to be snow was a whole lot of rain.

2. Teaching yoga. I subbed twice last week, started another module towards my 500 hour teaching certification, and saw my regular weekly class again after a two week break.

3. Being certain. As my final days of working at CSU get closer and closer (about 17 more weeks left), I am more and more sure that this is exactly the right choice. Sure, I still feel anxiety arise about the uncertainty of the future, but it doesn’t overwhelm me. I know it’s a natural response to a very big shift in my life.

4. Eric. One of the hardest things about going back to work after a long break is I don’t get to see him as much.

5. Ringo and Sam. I think we’ve reached their golden age — that brief moment when no one is a baby and no one is dying. It doesn’t last long enough.

Bonus joy: orange juice, a good rain jacket, computer glasses, a dependable car, slippers, a house that has electricity and running water and heat, reading in bed at night, CBD oil, Pilates, sitting in the sauna or under my infrared heating pad, yoga, cancelling plans.

Gratitude Friday

1. Flowers in the bathroom. I hadn’t had any in a while. I wanted a small white poinsettia but kept forgetting to look for one. Then I had to get rid of my Christmas tree and needed the cheering up.

2. An intention and visioning workshop. I haven’t done one of these for a while, after doing them regularly when Jamie Ridler hosted monthly full moon dreamboards. It also inspired me to pick a guiding word for 2019, something else I haven’t done lately: space. Holding space, making space, taking up space, resting in space. My Buddhist name translates to “space dancer” so it makes sense.

3. Eric. He and our friend Kerri were recently honored as Colorado Community College System’s Outstanding Faculty. They totally deserved it.

4. Ringo Blue, and his mama and papa, Peaches and Spec. It was five years ago we went to visit a litter of puppies, met their parents, and committed to taking one of the babies home when they got old enough. I suspect we’ll never get another dog under those circumstances, but I’m glad we have him.

5. We finally got snow! It’s almost all gone now, as the temperatures zoomed up to the 50s the very next day, but it was nice to have a little.

6. Sweet Sam. I didn’t get any pictures of him this week, even though he was with me almost every minute. Here’s a cute one from last year.

Bonus joy: citrus essential oils, naps, good books, bad TV that is good in its own way, aqua aerobics, teaching yoga, hanging out with Mikalina, texting with my brother, working on a puzzle, vet visits with both dogs who were so good for me, a big glass of cold water, sunshine.

Gratitude Friday

1. Morning walks. With Eric off work, when I go, we all four go together, and that’s the best kind of walk, no matter what time of day.

2. Holiday food. When I think about traditions of celebration, they almost always involve particular kinds of food and gathering together to eat that food. Having leftovers to get you through the days that follow when all you want to do is read, take naps, and cuddle is an extra bonus.

3. Naps and reading books. These are two of my favorite things, no matter what time of year, it’s just that during this season I’m more likely to do them more often and with WAY less resistance, (i.e. it can often be hard for me to relax into the joy of it because I can’t stop thinking about all the other things I could be doing).

4. Sweet Sam. Just like our first dog, Obi, Sam really is the best dog to hang out with when all you want to do is rest and relax and be lazy or when you are sick and just need comfort and love. When I go and get in bed during the day and he knows we are going to take a nap, it makes him super happy.

5. Ringo Blue. One of his favorite things on a walk is to find lost, abandoned things, pick them up and carry them home – socks, gloves, toys, baby things, water bottles, balls, sticks. Our front porch looks like the Isle of Misfit Toys. He’s also very very very handsome.

6. Eric. He’s my favorite.

Ringo helping open Christmas presents while Sam naps.

“Is that one for me, Dad?”

Bonus joy: sitting in the dark with just the lights of our Christmas tree, all the great presents and cards, aqua aerobics, sitting in the sauna with Eric, good TV (we’ve been watching a few series with Monty Don, a master gardener from England, and it has both of us excited about working on our garden next season), good books (I just finished The Miniaturist, in fact spent one whole day in my pjs reading because I couldn’t put it down), taking some time off from just about everything, anything citrus.


Gratitude Friday

1. We finally got a Christmas tree. So far, it only has lights on it, but that’s my favorite part anyway. Also, we waited so long and bought one so late, we got it for $20 off.

2. I was on retreat last week. That’s why I didn’t post this list. It was a bit of a surprise. I hadn’t planned on going this year. I even emailed and told Susan I wasn’t going to make it. She asked if I’d like to come as a program assistant if enough people signed up, and I said yes, but hadn’t heard anything. Then I got an email on Monday asking if I still wanted to come, (the retreat started on Wednesday!) and I said yes. It’s Susan Piver’s Fearlessly Creative Writing and Meditation retreat she does every year at Shambhala Mountain Center. I’ve been the last three years at least and loved it, so I was happy to not actually miss it this time. And being a program assistant gave me a whole other perspective that was very interesting.

3. Apple pie. Eric uses a recipe that calls for apple cider and maple syryp as the sweeteners and it is delicious.

4. Eric.  I commented on the white lights our neighbors wrapped around their tree, about how much l liked them, and the next day when I came home, there were white twinkle lights on two of our trees. As my friend Justine says, I married a good one.

5. My other two boys, Sam and Ringo. They got baths today, because even though Christmas is next week and this is Colorado, it’s sunny and 60 here today and it’s probably been about six months since they had their last bath.

Bonus joy: time off from work, the awareness that when I go back to work I will only have one semester left (!), texting with my brother, wrapping Christmas presents, sitting in the living room when it’s dark out with nothing but the lights on the tree, cookies baked and delivered by our neighbors, writing with Mikalina and Chloe’, “Christmas yoga” at Red Sage Vets, sleeping in, staying up late reading, good books (I just finished All the Names They Used for God, and it was SO good), an appointment for a massage tomorrow, computer glasses, puppies.


Gratitude Friday

1. I have around 22 weeks of work left at CSU. I had a conversation yesterday with someone about taking over a particular project, filled them in on the history of the situation, and something about that made leaving my job at CSU feel real. The closer the end gets, the more and more certain I feel that this was the right thing to do, that the only hope of me staying had passed almost a decade ago.

2. Practice. It is the thing that keeps me going.

When dog therapy and yoga use the same space

Sam, “helping” me meditate

3. Winter food. Don’t get me wrong, I miss my summer garden, but in this cold, dark time of year citrus and things like apple pie and chicken pot pie sustain me.

Apple pie oatmeal. One part oatmeal, one part apple pie, all smushed together

4. Christmas cactus season. Which we actually need to call something else, since they start blooming around Thanksgiving.

5. My three boys. They are my favorite.

There’s a heating vet under our kitchen sink where Ringo likes to hang out when it’s cold

“Can we haz some lunch?”

Bonus joy: good books (finished Children of Blood and Bone and started Heart Berries), good TV (finished Inside Jokes and started season two of Ms. Maisel), good music (the Furns have a new album out), good movies (Eric and I finally saw A Star is Born and even he cried a little at one point), snow, our new mattress holds heat so well we haven’t even had to put the winter blanket on, teaching yoga, aqua aerobics, clean water, heat, electricity, my “new” car, my “new” bathroom, slippers, a soft thick purple bathrobe, being able to ask for what I want, being here for Eric’s birthday (for the past five years, I was away on retreat), getting the laundry done on Friday.