Last night, for Sunday supper, a dear friend brought me a thank you gift … which thrilled me. Will this Ball Blue Book finally give me the courage to do some canning, overcoming my fear of killing those I love with tainted food? I want to make sauce, the way my grandmother did. Stay tuned. And see those lovely “Happy Clips”? There are beautiful golden words painted on them: “Thankful,” “Grateful,” and “Blessed.” I am. Truly blessed.
After spending the morning in conversation with a friend over breakfast, I realize how grateful I am for those beautiful moments of communion, face to face, soul to soul, strengthening our connection … in ways that email and smartphones will never be able to achieve. Thanks for the camaraderie, friends.
I cannot let this day slip away without expressing gratitude for Star Wars. When the original film was first released in 1977, I was leaving a job I’d had for seven years with a public library system. It was my first job so it was bittersweet to be moving on to a new path. Individually, a number of my co-workers wanted to treat me to something meaningful as a going away gift. Each person thought it would be a treat to take me to Star Wars. I saw the movie 13 times without letting on that I’d seen it before. It was the first time that I’d been to a movie more than once. The observations I made were mind-opening about film, storytelling, and acting. The story was well-crafted … and it began a mythology that persists worldwide. My life would not be the same had this movie not been imagined. May the Force be with you!
For several years, I considered writing a blog called “What Would Grandma Do?” In our striving for a life of less consumption, less waste, less harm to the planet, I realized that my grandmother often made do: creatively solving needs for new clothing by sewing and mending; making her own cleaning solutions; growing, canning, and making food to feed large numbers of visitors; re-using everything she could; making gifts designed to please the recipients; and buying as little as possible. She was a wonderful role model, providing hundreds of lessons and examples. I’m grateful for my grandmother for many reasons, but her role as chatelaine of her two-bedroom, one-bath manor guides me now. (Photo: my grandmother, my mother, my great-grandmother, and me)
About eight months ago, I was carded at a restaurant (yes) when the waitperson told me that my driver’s license was expired. More than a year ago. In our state, this means you need to take the written driver’s test and pass. I haven’t driven our car for many months. Finally, yesterday, I had studied enough (there are many new rules and regulations) to take the test. Along with a roomful of 16-year-olds, I passed the test. I am grateful to be able to drive again. My husband is grateful, too.
We live in the middle of Timber Crest Forest. Trees are plentiful. After months of knowing the trees by their trunks, boughs, and branches, the leaves are budding out. There’s a haze of color from rusty red to soft green to lime green to brown. I am grateful for the change of seasons … and for the beauty of trees. Let’s plant some more.
I am grateful for e-books. There. I’ve said it. I normally keep that quiet because I feel like I’m betraying The Readerhood. I have my reasons. I am a Constant Reader. Before, when we drove to a meeting where we might have to wait for 20 minutes or an hour, I took three books along. Now I take my tablet which holds at least 20 books I haven’t read yet. I’m able to read ARCs and PDFs instead of hauling around a sheaf of 300 pieces of paper. Highlighting passages and making notes in the e-book satisfies my need to be organized, preparing for articles I’m writing. And, having become a fitful sleeper, I can read myself back to sleep in the middle of the night without disturbing my favorite sleeper. I still enjoy the smell and feel of a printed book. Most of my e-books come from the library. Can I still be part of The Readerhood?
When I started working at the public library when I was 16, shelving books and magazines opened my world. I was attracted to The New Yorker by the cover art. I’ve been reading the magazine ever since then. I am especially grateful when the covers pay homage to books, reading, and libraries.
Yesterday, my cherished husband packed up a picnic lunch, invited me to sit lakeside to watch the spring waters, and converse. It was a much-needed break after several months of deadlines for us both. I am grateful for pleasant surprises.
Numbers have intimidated me for most of my life. Words are my comfortable space, numbers not so much. In high school, we spent a month in one class on extra sensory perception (ESP). Various scientists, mathematicians, psychics, and practitioners visited our classroom. I was especially fascinated by numerology, which purports to interpret the mathematical code running through each individual’s life. I learned how to do this, even charting people’s numbers at a traveling psychic fair, but years later I’m grateful that it opened the door for me to feel more comfortable with, even fascinated by, numbers. In this way, numbers led to stories which led to understanding. (Here’s a peek at numerology.)