Tag Archives: Gratitude Friday

Gratitude Friday

orchids1. Flowers in the bathroom. Extra fancy ones because Eric was going to be gone for a few days.

2. I fell, but it wasn’t as bad as it could have been. We had freezing rain the other day, which we never get, and it came a day before predicted so caught everyone off guard. I walked out into the parking lot and fell flat on my back. My elbows are both bruised and sore (cause even though they tell you how to fall to avoid getting really hurt, it happens so fast you are all instinct, and apparently I tried to catch myself with my elbows), my hip and my back hurt and I have a baby case of whiplash, but like I said — I know it could have been so much worse and am feeling really lucky it wasn’t. My knee is also getting better, so that’s a bonus.

oatmeal3. Dr. McDougall’s Organic Instant Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal. I tried to eat the store brand for a bit (cause they only carry this kind at Whole Foods and I can’t ever seem to get out of that store for less than $50 so I try to avoid it), but this is so much better. I mix in 1/4 cup of plain instant oats and it’s perfect.

4. This face. Seriously, sometimes I’m so frustrated with him because he’s doing some thing that’s making me crazy, and then he gives me this look, and I can’t even.


5. Sam, who at seven years old is the perfect mix of sweet and lazy, young and healthy.


Bonus joy: Oranges, clean sheets, getting the laundry done on Friday, Wild Writing, ibuprofen, good TV, my Kindle and the library loaded on there, texting and Voxing with friends, napping with the dogs, working from home, Black History Month.

Gratitude Friday

practiceshrine1. Practice. The only way I stay sane.

2. The light when it snows. Even in the middle of the night it’s light outside, and if it’s sunny during the day it’s super bright. It’s a nice change after all the dark.

3. Wild Writing. We started a new session today. It feels good to get back at it.

4. This guy, who is willing to take the dogs out for a run even though it’s -9 degrees. And he made cinnamon rolls yesterday, after he shoveled all the snow off the sidewalks and around our cars.


5. Ringo Blue and Sweet Sam. We’ve been in a phase of health and calm with the dogs that’s such a welcome reprieve. May it last.

showernap snowsam03

Bonus joy: good snow tires, thermal underwear, Voxer, emails from my mom, texts from my brother, the stories I wrote my dad for Christmas being a big hit, naps, good books, whole clove garlic bread, yoga class first thing in the morning, a big glass of cold clean water, time alone, watching old episodes of Amazing Race and laughing with Eric, soaking in a warm tub, clean sheets, staying in my pjs all day, poetry.

Gratitude Friday

Sam helps me make a wish

Sam helps me make a wish

1. Birthdays. I turned 49 and Ringo turned 3. On mine, I slept in, had a lazy morning with the dogs, gave meditation instruction to Susan Piver, video chatted with one of my favorite writers, had tea and cake (with candles!) with one of my best friends, talked to my mom and brother on the phone, and went to dinner with my favorite. Then, the next day was Ringo’s turn. He did pretty much what he always does, but that’s just because his life is already really good.

Does he look older?

Does he look older?

2. Morning walks. Because we are both on a tiny break from work, Eric and I get to go together, and we’ve been stopping at the little dog park.


3. The Happy Holiday Hearth DVD. Tis the season. We bought it originally as a joke, but it’s actually so awesome we use it all the time. I swear I feel warmer sitting in front of it.

thanksgivingfire02 thanksgivingfire

4. Being lazy. I don’t do it often enough, and could learn a thing or two from the dogs, who are really really good at it.

ringocouching03 samcouching02

5. Eric taking the dogs hiking. They love to go and I love having the house all to myself.

snowtraildogs traildogs02

Bonus joy: Thanksgiving dinner leftovers, a new season of Gilmore Girls, clean pjs, Solange’s new album, 2 Dope Queens, four days off from work, quiet, clean water, people willing to risk everything to protect the water, Put Your Hands Together, crying, meditation, sleep, cuddling with the dogs, making Eric laugh.

Gratitude Friday


1. Morning walks with the dogs. We’ve been stopping at the Little Dog Park and there’s still a bit more light than before, especially with the super moon this week.


2. Hiking with my boys. The last one was a hard hike, but I’m still grateful for it. It seemed so innocent, a hike on a “nature” trail next to a camping ground closed for the season. But the first half, the first full hour, was straight up, all the way to 7200 feet. And the way down there was one part where the trail was right on the edge of a sheer, steep drop, and that plus the stress of the past week threw me into a full blown panic attack. Sobbing on the side of a cliff wasn’t where I expected to be that morning, but I made it back down okay. There’s a metaphor in there somewhere.

mountmcconnell02 mountmcconnell hikingselfie

3. My tiny family. All three of them are just so cute, make me laugh and love on me when I’m sad. I’m so lucky.


ringocouching02 mytherapydog ringoblueriver sweetsamcouching

sweetsamlittledogpark twospeeds outofthekitchen

4. Birthday slippers! And, another birthday, to get to be here, to be 49 years old (how did that happen?!), to be able to get old. I’ve got some special plans today, get to spend time with some of my favorite people, and I’m grateful. My birthday, landing where it does, always feels like the kickoff to a long celebration that doesn’t end until New Year’s.


5. SNOW!!! Finally… It has been crazy warm here for fall, with the past few days hitting almost 80, so to get some frozen moisture feels good.


Bonus joy: phone call from my mom, text and box of presents from my brother, Mary’s Mountain Cookies (seriously, local people, what kind of evil do they put in the oatmeal chocolate chip?!), roasted veggies, space, time, all the love on Facebook (best thing about Facebook absolutely has to be birthdays), a warm shower, a cold glass of water, good books, good tv, good people who won’t give up, a new headlamp, new snow tires on their way, glasses, clean sheets, sleep, soaking in a warm tub, napping with my dogs, how much Ringo loves the snow, how much Sam loves me.

Gratitude Friday


1. All the veterans. Those who served, the ones who left their family and friends and homes and put themselves at risk in order to keep us safe. Those who never came home. Those who came home broken. Those we have forgotten. Those we have failed.

2. Kitchen counter love notes. This one from the other day is super fancy.


3. Morning walks with the dogs. It’s been light enough because of Daylight Savings Time that we can even stop at the Little Dog Park and play a bit.


4. My “new” bathroom. It’s officially one year old, but it still feels new. Flowers in the bathroom are also one of my favorite things.


Before and After.

Before and After.

5. My boys. Ringo’s coat made of stars. Sleeping in with Sam.

coatmadeofstars02 sweetsamlounging

6. Fall berries. No really, I think these are actually the last ones.


Bonus joy: Clean laundry, a warm shower, a cold glass of clean water, the internet, friends near and far, a good therapist, having support and love even when things seem so upside down, good books, good TV, emergency services (seriously, I saw an ambulance the other day and it made me cry to think about how sane and compassionate we can be).

Gratitude Friday

Ginko nuts, which are pretty but smell terrible and contain the same chemical that causes poison oak to give you a rash

Ginkgo nuts, which are pretty but smell terrible and contain the same chemical that poison oak does and will give you a nasty rash.

1. Lingering fall. The color, the weather, and even a few more strawberries.



2. I planted bulbs!!! This is very exciting. It’s probably been five years I’ve wanted to and every year I forget until it’s too late. The lingering warm weather and a lovely surprise from a friend in the mail helped this year. Even so, I still waited long enough that the bulbs I bought were on clearance and hidden in a corner of a garden center already full of Christmas stuff.


3. Walking with Eric and the dogs at Riverbend Ponds. I hadn’t been there in a long time, (we used to go a lot when Obi and Dexter were little), although lately Eric’s been walking the dogs there a lot in the afternoon. We went this weekend, early enough in the morning that the sun was just coming up, and I got so many good pictures.


Colorado, you so pretty.

4. My new favorite shirt. Last year, Amy McCracken, the Executive Director of Richmond Animal League (RAL), Burg’s roommate, and one of my favorite writers and humans, sent me a RAL sweatshirt (covered in Burg hair). It’s one of my favorite things. This year, RAL has some new schwag, and there was a black thermal I really really wanted, but you can only get it AT the shelter. I emailed Amy about it, and she was able to get me one. Today is the first day I wore it, but I can already tell it’s going to be one of my favorites.

Me: "Hey Sam, take a selfie with me in my new favorite shirt to send to Amy." Sam: *snore*

Me: “Hey Sam, take a selfie with me in my new favorite shirt to send to Amy.” Sam: *snore*

5. My tiny family. Eric, Sam, and Ringo keep me going, even on the dark days when giving up seems very tempting.


Bonus joy: leftover Halloween candy, working from home on Fridays, John Jay & Rich in the morning on the radio, sleeping in with Sam, training with Ringo, morning walks with the dogs (they are being so good — although, it’s so dark we hardly see anybody else out so there’s not many distractions, but I’m grateful for that too), seeing the stars on our early morning walks, having something to offer, being able to listen and make space for someone else’s discovery, good tv, good books (so many good books — how am I going to EVER read them ALL?!), lunch plans with friends, texting with my brother, voicemail from my mom even though I didn’t actually get to talk to her, doing good work, a cold glass of clean water, being “90% corrected” (according to my physical therapist — big news considering we are working with a 30 year old situation), good car insurance, good health insurance, a warm shower, a washer and dryer in my house because I can still remember the scramble for quarters and having to lug baskets of dirty laundry to a second location and all the waiting involved, heat, electricity, my new car, the money to pay for all those things because I have a job and so does Eric and we have very little debt, privilege (I’d rather this were more equally distributed, but that doesn’t mean I’m not grateful for what I’ve got), practice.

Gratitude Friday


1. Fall color. I’m feeling grateful especially for the Ash trees, and grieving them at the same time. 1 in 5 trees in Fort Collins are Ash. Other than Aspens, they are the most beautiful of all the trees in fall. Because of a pest on its way, the emerald ash borer, in about 5 years they could ALL be dead.

2. Ringo and Sam. We had another training session with Amy of Trust Your Dog Training, (highly recommended) and they did so good and we’ve got some great ideas to work with next. I’m especially grateful that after a rough summer, they are back to playing in the backyard every day, being rowdy and wearing each other out.


3. Anniversary apple pie. Eric had written “love” across the top in bits of crust, but I’d already eaten the “L” and the “O” when he asked if I’d noticed. It has made for some delicious apply pie oatmeal for breakfast this week.


4. Good books. I’ve been in love with them for as long as I can remember, first being read to and then learning to do it for myself and then wanting to write my own. Reading is still and will most likely be one of my very favorite things to do, and writing is something I do every day almost no matter what — practicing, practicing, practicing.

5. Eric. For our anniversary, I gave him a jar of slips of paper, on each one I’d written something I loved about him. I’ve been working on it since January so there are a lot, but he’s only letting himself read a few a day, savoring them.


Bonus joy: anniversary flowers in the bathroom, roasted vegetables, sleeping in, physical therapy, a good resolution to a dumb situation and support from my boss about it, Wild Writing, poetry, meditation, my favorite long sleeved shirt that I forgot about but found yesterday and wore again, good TV, lunch at Whole Foods, Fax4Life Chocolate Brownie Mini Muffins (seriously so so so good, I don’t even care that they are supposed to be “healthy”), grapefruit soda (can’t remember the brand, but so refreshing), clean sheets, a warm shower, my new bathroom which is actually almost a year old now, walking with the dogs early in the morning.