This week the ladies over at The Broke and the Bookish have asked us for the Top Ten Things We're Thankful For with Thanksgiving right around the corner. Seriously. Can you believe Thanksgiving is only two days away? Where has 2013 gone?
I love taking a moment to sit back and reflect on the things in my life I'm thankful for. I wish I did it more often. I have a little list of 'gratitudes' in one of my journals, but I don't take it out too often and add to its pages. I wish I did. Maybe that will be a resolution for 2014? To sit down, slow down, and be grateful for all that is going on around me. It's so easy to get lost in the minutia of day-to-day living - especially the not-so-good-or-happy parts. Stopping to take stock of all that is good? That's something we all could probably use a little more of.
So, here's my little list. May it jump-start a slowing down and appreciation of life. My own, at least. Maybe yours too?
1. My Parents - Two of my best friends and two of the best people I have ever known. I'd honestly be lost without them - their guidance, support, and love has made all the difference in my life. I'm who I am and where I'm at because of them.
2. My Job - Sure it's not a forever job. It's not a career. But it's hard to find a job you love, working with people you love, and doing work that is good and meaningful. I'm blessed to have found this organization at this point in my life. Most days I'm positive it has given me more than I'll ever be able to give back.
3. Good Friends - I hope I never take any of them for granted.
4. My Reading History - I am thankful for this every time I pick up a book. Having a love for reading instilled in me at a young age has really shaped who I am and how I see the world. I'm pretty sure all the wonder I still find around me is due largely to my love for books. The idea that anything could be around the next corner has me wide-eyed and hopeful for the future. Kids need to read more.
5. Authors Who Make Me Think (And Then Make Me Re-Think) - You all know what I mean about this one. The authors who challenge traditional conventions. The ones who push the envelopes. The ones who end a series in a way that you may not like but that makes sense for the story as a whole. The ones who can put into words exactly what you feel but could never properly articulate. The ones who make you feel all the feels to be felt.
6. My Cat - Phoenix. What a brat. But I love her and cannot imagine my life without her little grey paws in it.
7. Teachers Who Make A Difference - The ones I've had in my life that have given me strength and guidance. But also the ones that I work with on a weekly basis. The ones the kids I work with look up to and listen to. The ones who are invested and care about their kids' futures. The ones who make a difference to a kids life - and change it for the better. Kids need people to believe in them - people other than their parents. Mom & Dad are supposed to believe in you - but when someone outside the family believes in you? That's when you really start believing in you.
8. My Health - I try not to take this for granted. So, thank you body for doing what you do so well. Let's keep on keeping helathy, okay?
9. The Travelbug - My life would truly be a different place if it weren't for my insatiable need to travel. Since I was little I've wanted to see the world. And so far I've had quite the opportunities to do so. I'm glad I was bit - it ties into my constant state of wonder with the world around me. I need to see everything there is to see.
10. Soldiers - I'm going to be working with the Vietnam Veterans again this winter - something which was so moving and so powerful to me last year. And thinking of it makes me realize just how thankful I am for all the men and women who have, are, or will serve our country. We live in quite an amazing place and time. Are things perfect? No, certainly not. But they could be a heck of a lot worse. And it's the people who fight for us and defend us that have made all the difference in the world. Make sure you thank a soldier. Not just on a designated day, but everyday.