Day 28 – 30 Days Of Thankfulness 2012

Today I am thankful for family and friends who can fix things.

My laptop is acting up and I fear it is on death’s bed.  My youngest brother is going to come by and check it out and see if he can do anything.  He is very good with fixing and building computers.  Thankfully.

He is also very good at breaking the news to you, when, as he put it, “I think it went to that great silicon graveyard in the sky.”

I have many friends and family members able to fix just about anything or they can recommend a solution.  Even if it is to open up the window and toss it out, or in the case of my car, hope space garbage falls from the sky and lands on it.

Seriously, though, I am fortunate to be surrounded by funny, yet talented individuals.



Day 25 ~ 30 Days Of Thankfulness

Today I am thankful for food to eat.

If my weight is any indication, I have an abundance of food.

So many go to bed hungry, and I can simply walk into the kitchen and find plenty to eat, is something to be very thankful.

The fact that I’ve reactivated my my Sparkpeople account again is a good indication that I’m not lacking for food!

Day 24 ~ 30 Days Of Thankfulness 2012

Mom said it best this morning:

“I’m thankful for a warm house.”

I second that one!  It is 35 degrees outside at the moment.  Someone posted on Facebook a little while ago that they were seeing flurries.  Oh yippie.  I don’t  like winter.  I love snow if I am inside looking out on it with a hot cup of coffee in hand.  But I do NOT like being cold one bit.

So, as it is cold outside, I’m very thankful for the warm house we live in, keeping us comfortable on this cold day.

Friday Confessional On Saturday

PhotobucketOops…Friday Confessional…on Saturday.

Because sometimes life happens!

Link up and confess – it is good for the soul.  And makes us all feel a bit better knowing we’re not the only under achievers.

Here it comes, this week’s dirty little secrets.

Right now I’m sitting on my pretty fingers.  I may never stop sitting on them where the subject of my psycho former sister-in-law-to-be is concerned, though at the moment it is all I have not to unleash my blog smack down on her.  The day the ink is dry and she is a OFFICIALLY former member of the family can never come soon enough.

 I could write my name on the furniture in my room this past week from the dust.  Actually, I could have written a book.  It’s clean now but wow.

I boycotted Black Friday shopping, even when my daughter called and wanted to hit a mall for a bit.  I love spending time with her but just did NOT feel like getting anywhere near a store.

My jeans were getting looser, but I’ve indulged in too much food the past few days.  And PMS is setting in again.  And I’ve not been diligent to drink a lot of water. *hangs head in shame*

I’ve had more than a few candy buckeyes.  They should be outlawed.  Wayyyy too yummy.

I went to bed at 8:50pm last night.  I slept until 7:30am this morning.  Fact is I could have slept more.

Okay, lame I know, but that is all that I’ve got for now.  I’m sure pressed to recall other things I could, but for now, that will have to do.

Day 23 ~ 30 Days Of Thankfulness 2012

The house is all cleaned, turkey and associated leftovers have been put away to be nibbled on now for days to come until we can no longer stomach turkey anything.

I’m thankful for the time spent yesterday with the members of my family that were able to be here, even if only for a short visit.  And thankful for the memories shared.

During the cooking portion of the day, we were trying to figure out how long mom has been making her pecan dressing/stuffing.  I distinctly remembered one Thanksgiving way back when I was a little girl, in my parents first house.  My grandparents, my mom’s siblings (most were not married) and a stray aunt and uncle or so, crammed into our tiny house.  Me and my siblings ate at the card table by the window in the dinning room.  That is the first time I remember having the dressing.  I  don’t recall exact ages but I couldn’t have been more than 8 or so years old.

The recipe is from the newspaper, and it is yellowed now.  We decided this needs to be laminated soon so we don’t lose it.  To me and my sister, it isn’t Thanksgiving without mom’s stuffing!

Making A Grown Up Christmas List

I love the song, “Grown Up Christmas List”.

It got me thinking hard the other day, as I had it on in my room, and in relation to my post about Longing For A Simpler Time, about my adult Christmas list.

I don’t have a desire for a bunch of “stuff”.  I’m not out Black Friday shopping today, haven’t for several years because the insanity of it all keeps getting worse.  When stores open on Thanksgiving evening, on a holiday employees should be home with family, it kind of makes my stomach turn.  And all these shoppers pushing and shoving to get bargains on things that they do NOT need.  No one NEEDS a 60 inch HD television, that is a want.  No one NEEDS an iPad, again, it is a want.   What if for a change we DID something for people instead of buying something.  Or donated the money we would spend to a charity.

Some ideas:

Free babysitting – every couple with small children knows how pricey a sitter is, not to mention the cost of dinner and a movie.  My grandparents were married “til death do us part”, and it was such a neat thing to see them sitting together in their old age, holding hands.  I learned that they had a regular date night each week, even if that date was peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in the park.  It was THEIR time, not time to talk about the kids, or work, it was time to recharge them.  Maybe that is why they were so in love and stayed married despite the difficulties they faced over the years.  Know a  young couple with little ones? Why not give them 12 nights of free baby sitting? Once a month take the kids so they can have some time together.  If  you figure up the price of a good sitter, for 4-5 hours each of 12 nights, that is one pricey gift that costs you nothing, yet is priceless because it is your time.

Dinner – how many of us know someone who cannot get out much.  Maybe they simply have a tight budget, or they are single, or a single mom with kids, or maybe an elderly shut in.  So many people would love a home cooked meal outside of their own home if they are able to get out.  Sure, it might mean you have to go and pick them up, but what if, again, once a month you had someone to your table who might not otherwise get out of their home or routine.  So you have some salad and bread to stretch the meal to include one more seat, is it really that big of a hassle?  It could be lunch one Saturday a month, sometimes at home, other times maybe at a park.  If they cannot go out, don’t just take the meal to them, sit down and eat with them. Talk to them, enjoy the time!  There is no way to put a price on a gift like this, for you or that person receiving it!

Read – Have someone on your list who is unable to read because vision is failing? Or they are too young to read? Or they just don’t read much but should.  Why not set aside time to read to them?  Kids love someone to read to them!  So do folks who cannot read for themselves any longer.

Make Something – cookies, dinner, a blanket, find something you can make for someone.    One year my sister made no-sew fleece blankets for the 4 foster kids I was taking care of, because she wanted to do something but couldn’t afford to spend much.  She made each one personal to the child, for the price of some fabric and her time to put them together.  I’ve received cookies and snacks from people as gifts, and believe me I loved those far more than a store bought item because I knew they took time to actually make something for me.  Don’t just make something, add a hand written note with a memory of that person that makes you smile!

Write! – When all else fails, write something!  I had a letter for years from my dad that he wrote to me on my 12th birthday.  He had to be away that year, so he sent me a letter about how much he loved me, and how proud he was of me and WHY.  That letter, even to a 12 year old, meant so much.  Imagine what a letter like that, from your heart, could mean to a friend or loved one?  Money cannot buy what is  in your heart, and having it will be a priceless keepsake for that individual.

Memories  – What if instead of unwrapping presents, we unwrapped memories and shared those around the tree one year? Just the other day, as my sister and I ran an errand, I was telling her that one of my fondest memories of the holidays was one year when all of us, siblings and significant others,  parents and offspring, went to the Festival Of Lights at our zoo.  We all ended up on the train together singing Christmas Carols.  We butchered them as most of us cannot carry a tune strapped to our backs, but it was so much fun.  She laughed and enjoyed the memory with me, having forgotten about it until I brought it up.  What joy could you bring if everyone shared like that instead of sharing a store bought item?  Everyone bring a gift box or bag with their notes about the memory (so they don’t forget parts they want to share) and each take turns reading the memory to everyone present.  Imagine the fun and new memories being made and again, it will cost nothing but time, but the gift to others will be priceless.  It doesn’t have to involve others there, just a memory of something or someone special you want to share with others.  I know, you actually have to sit down together and talk, share….take a deep breath you can do this.

Forgiveness – Who do you hold a grudge against?  Imagine the gift not only to the person, but yourself, if you forgave them and reconciled a relationship?  Over the years I have done this a few times, and always the outcome was positive.  One that stands out was my first husband, after a very ugly divorce and custody fight.  I not only forgave him a court ordered debt that year, but I extended an olive branch his way.  It made the growing up years of my son so much better when his parents could get along for his sake.

Between now and Christmas, I’m going to start a grown up Christmas list.  Like the 30 days of thankfulness I’ve been keeping, each day leading up to Christmas I’m going to add an  item to my wish list for this Christmas.  They won’t really be things Santa could bring, or someone could purchase for me.  They will be things that  have meaning, wishes that I’ve carried in my heart.  I would  love  to see my fellow blog buds do this too, as so many of you that read my posts have often inspired me.

Here  is the song that got me thinking about my grown up Christmas list. The lyrics first and then one of my favorite versions sung by Amy Grant.

“My Grown Up Christmas List”

Do you remember me
I sat upon your knee
I wrote to you
With childhood fantasies
Well, I’m all grown up now
And still need help somehow
I’m not a child
But my heart still can dream
So here’s my lifelong wish
My grown up christmas list
Not for myself
But for a world in need
No more lives torn apart
That wars would never start
and wars would never start
And time would heal all hearts
And everyone would have a friend
And right would always win
And love would never end
This is my grown up christmas list
As children we believed
The grandest sight to see
Was something lovely
Wrapped beneath our tree
Well heaven only knows
That packages and bows
Can never heal
A hurting human soul
No more lives torn apart
That wars would never start
And time would heal all hearts
And everyone would have a friend
And right would always win
And love would never end
This is my grown up christmas list
What is this illusion called the innocence of youth
Maybe only in our blind belief can we ever find the truth
(there’d be)
No more lives torn apart
That wars would never start
And time would heal all hearts
And everyone would have a friend
And right would always win
And love would never end, oh
This is my grown up christmas list
This is my only life long wish
This is my grown up christmas list

Day 22 ~ 30 Days Of Thankfulness 2012

Thankful today for all those who will not be able to be home.

Our military deployed away from family – thank you for serving our country.

For the police and firefighters who have to be on duty today and away from family, my son and brother among them, – thank you for keeping us safe, please be safe today!

For doctors, nurses, and countless other jobs that must continue despite the holiday – thank you for all you do to keep things going.

And for the families who will celebrate this day without their loved ones in these various roles, thank you for your sacrifice that enables those men and women to do their jobs.

To everyone, have a very blessed Thanksgiving!

Day 20 ~ 30 Days Of Thankfulness 2012

Today I’m thankful for time spent with my mom and sister, grocery shopping.

It is no small wonder we aren’t asked to leave the store sometimes.

I swear the 3 of us could turn a root canal into something highly entertaining and amusing.  We have the best time together and laugh so much that more often than not we come home all running for the bathroom from laughing so hard.

Getting to this place in my life was not my plan, staying married forever was plan ‘A’.  But Plan ‘B’ has turned out to be something amazing, fun, and I swear a day doesn’t go by us without a lot of laughs.  If laughter is the best medicine we should all live forever!


Day 19 ~ 30 Days Of Thankfulness 2012

I’m thankful for dinner.  With family.  Around the table.

I have very fond memories of dinners growing up, the whole family around the table eating a home cooked meal.

We have dinner around the table every night here in the Diva Den, and I love it.  While all the Divas cannot always be present, 3 of us are almost always here and that is makes it nice.

I love that my brother and Angie likewise have made dinner at the table as a family, with a home cooked  meal, the norm for their family.  And it isn’t easy when you have a blended family, but they make it happen.

Sharing about everyone’s day, over food someone cared enough to prepare, is one of those things that make being a family special and for which I am very thankful.

The only thing better is a family dinner with all my siblings and their families, and of course my kids and granddaughter.

Longing For A Simpler Time…

I remember a simpler time in my life. 

Stores were closed on Sundays.  So were gas stations except along the highway and even then I’m not sure many were open.

McDonald’s was a treat, every 2 weeks when dad got paid.

Decorations didn’t go up for Christmas until Thanksgiving turkey had been eaten and everyone came back from grandmother’s house, through the woods and back over the river.  I don’t even know when this happened, maybe after the stores closed on the Wednesday prior to Thanksgiving?  I only know that come Black Friday everything magically was Christmas.  But never before Thanksgiving.

Fun was riding the bus downtown to see the windows and the train display at Cincinnati Gas & Electric.  It was free.  Now you have to PAY to see them at the museum.  I won’t go for that reason.

We looked forward to Christmas shows like Rudolph, and Charlie Brown, Frosty The Snowman, The Little Drummer Boy, The Grinch,  and Miracle  On 34th Street.

While we were not Little House On The Prairie, when one really nice, special gift for Christmas made it a wonderful year, this massive gift pile mentality was still not the norm for anyone that I knew.  We received a few toys, things we really wanted, but we also received things we needed, like socks, pajamas and underwear.  A batch of homemade cookies from anyone was a real gift!

Acura is running a commercial of late for the holidays, that says “listen to the voice of reason”.  What a novel idea!

We’re in an economy where a large number of people have no jobs, or haven’t had raises in years.  Seriously these commercials of fancy cars, diamonds and such are really not doing it for me.  Not that they ever have but my ex one time remarked, the Christmas right before he asked me for a divorce, that the car commercials were really good at making a guy feel guilty that he couldn’t buy his wife an Audi for Christmas.  I don’t know too many husbands that can afford to do so!  Unless it is a Matchbox car!

With money exceedingly tight this year, I’m wondering…why not go back to that simpler time.  Why not listen to the voice of reason?

Sure, I’d love diamonds and fancy clothes, or a new car.  Maybe a Kindle Fire, or iPad.  All very nice, don’t get me wrong.  But I do not NEED them.  And need is really far more important.

I was sitting here thinking, what are gifts that I need that I’d truly LOVE to receive?

A gift certificate to my hair salon.
Footie socks, 12 pair? (I go through them fast as I hate shoes).
Jammies!  I love jammies!
A gift certificate to Hobby Lobby, my favorite store EVER!
Essential oils, they are becoming increasingly more of a need for me!
A new phone.  It is a need as my current one is just shot.  And I can buy the phone outright!
Clothes for the new job I’ll be starting.
Gas cards – those are awesome.
Gift Visa Cards – I can then buy what I need as I need it!

Beyond that…there is not much I need!  What if we all actually just made a list of what we really need…chances are that it would be a lot more practical, and less expensive than the list of things we’d like to have.