Tag Archives: Gratitude

Gratitude

Disclaimer: three weeks away means A LOT of pictures 🙂

1. Oregon. In particular the Willamette Valley and the Central Oregon Coast. We’ve lived in Colorado for about 25 years now, in this tiny house for the last 20, and love it here, have no intention of leaving, AND I lived the first years of my life in Oregon and love it there. Luckily even though Eric didn’t live in Oregon his whole life (his Mom grew up there and he finished high school there and eventually met me there in our early 20s, but they were also a military family who lived all over while he was growing up), he spent enough of his life there to know it, his family eventually all settled there too, and he loves the ocean as much as I do — which is A LOT. When we visit, typically in the summer, we can see most of our family AND get to spend time at the beach. Ringo did so good on this trip. Even though we were in the car for three days each direction and we “lived” in five different locations, as long as we set up his crate and there was a deck or yard for him lounge in and a good place to walk, he was fine. He also did his very best to break the “no pets on the furniture” rule every singe place we stayed.

1. Coming home. As much as we love Oregon, the beach and our people and the food and the ease of vacation, it’s good to be home. And even though I missed my peonies, Jen and Nora sent me lots of pictures.

3. Morning walks. Ringo has been doing so good, can go four miles without wrecking himself, and that makes me so happy. I also love that this time of year when I walk with Ringo, Eric usually comes with us. It’s still weird to have only one dog, especially when we walk together so only one of us is technically walking the dog, but there’s also a particular ease to it that I’m enjoying.

4. Reading. Books are my best friends, my greatest teachers. Part of my morning practice is to read a chapter from a dharma book and a chapter from a creativity book. The most recent collection (pictured below) of what I’ve been reading is SO GOOD, highly recommended. I’ll also add Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants to the list, no picture because I passed it along once I read it. Next up and just delivered are Body Work: The Radical Power of Personal Narrative and Heart Medicine: How to Stop Painful Patterns and Find Peace and Freedom.

5. My tiny family, my tiny home, my tiny life. Vacation, being away from your normal space, stuff, and routine, gives you a different perspective on your “regular” life. And it doesn’t really matter where or how far you go, just that it’s “someplace else.” For me, I can see my experience more clearly from this different perspective, consider it with compassion and wisdom, and see the things I may not have been aware of because they were too close, too familiar. I can more easily connect to my experience with a sense of gratitude and discernment. 

Bonus joy: Luna Sea Fish House halibut fish & chips, LeRoys’ Blue Whale pancakes, baked goodies from Depoe Baykery, Mo’s clam chowder, a big salad, sour gummy worms, hybrid and electric cars, the sound of the ocean, wildflowers, all the birds, coyotes and beavers, herons, washers and dryers, air conditioning, fans, trees, honey bees, recipes, bread, the little ones in our families, vaccines, clean sheets, a warm shower, houseplants, grapefruit bubbly sparkling water, streaming TV and movies (in Oregon, we had to watch commercials and IT WAS AWFUL), listening to podcasts, reading in bed at night while Ringo and Eric sleep.

Gratitude

1. Morning walks. Now that Eric’s on summer break, we get to do more family walks in the morning. In another few weeks, we’ll be on the Oregon Coast and get to walk there together. I spent the first 25 years of my life with easy access to the beach and it’s the one thing I don’t have in Colorado, so I visit when I can. When Eric went with us to the cement ponds on Friday morning, it was clear he’s a lucky charm because even though Ringo and I normally only see other dogs, some geese or a few ducks, maybe even a heron; with Eric, we saw a murder of crows chasing a giant owl, a blackbird eating a frog, and an osprey with a fish.

2. Raintree Athletic Club. Right now, it’s really the only place I ever go besides the grocery store or the doctor. There’s just so much good stuff there: a café, Pilates, yoga, small group HIIT training, a swimming pool, sauna, and hydromassage chair, etc., along with lots of good people — one who has a service dog, a gorgeous super mellow chocolate lab named Captain.

3. Wild writing with Laurie. We are on a break for the summer and I’m already missing it so much.

4. Both/And. Our good, good next door neighbors of the past 13 years moved to Ohio (grief), and they left us a bunch of stuff, including a striped spider plant, a fern, a lipstick plant, and a massive rosemary bush, along with a dog bed that Ringo does not understand at all (joy) — Both/And.

5. My tiny family, tiny home, tiny life. Even at the end of the world in the middle of nowhere, I can stay because they are here.

Image by Eric (and Prisma)

Bonus joy: pay day, our whole house fan and a/c, being able to text and email instead of call, still thinking about the lasagna Eric made last week, crisp juicy gala apples, strawberries, granola, watching true crime with Eric, listening to podcasts, that not only did Barb give us plants but the pots they are in are gorgeous, our remodeled veterinary clinic, stickers, baby geese, the hydromassage chair, THC/CBD salve (the only thing that touches the pain in my hands from arthritis), citrus, patchouli, french toast, naps, blankets, down and wool, honey bees, birds at the feeder, smoothies, good dirt, trees, writing in the morning in front of my HappyLight with a cup of coffee with cocoa and tiny marshmallows, reading in bed at night while Eric and Ringo sleep.