I am grateful for toothless grins.  Griffin lost his first tooth this past week and he looks like a different kid.  More grown up.  I guess he *did* just celebrate his sixth birthday this weekend so he is more grown up.

I am grateful for people who go out of their way to do something nice.  Like my daughter’s friend AW.  Transportation got screwed up from the kids’ early morning church class (6AM) to school so instead of letting Colleen leave class 15 minutes early to catch the bus, AW volunteered to give Colleen a ride so she could stay for the class’s entirety.  She didn’t have to, but her kind heart is appreciated. 

I am grateful for music.  I love listening to my kids’ practice their instruments.  Some parents tolerate the practicing, I {puffy heart} love it.  Cameron on his electric guitar, amp turned up loud.  Keegan on the drums, and Atalie on the piano.  The sounds just warm my heart and fills our home with such a sweet energy.  I am also grateful for their appreciation of music.  Three of my five kids are in choir.  Yet, every Sunday at church I can hear all 7 of us singing the hymns.  Every Monday night we sing songs of praise as a family and everyone joins in.  In the truck as we travel most of us will sing to what is on the radio/Zune and I can hear the harmonies we have and often times it brings a tear to my eye.

I am grateful for my kids’ teachers.  I appreciate that they all seem to want to work as a team to make sure my kids are on the right road.  I appreciate the time and effort and money that they put in to my child’s future.  I used to want to be a teacher but I would have taken each of those kids home with me at night.  Not physically, but all their home problems or learning problems and I would have stressed about them to the point that I would have been driven mad.  How these select people can do it year after year is admirable.  And to include in this fabulous group of people, I would like to add I am grateful for my kids’ bus drivers.  Oh what a terrible, awesome responsibility!  I couldn’t do it!

I am grateful for my 5 senses.  I used to wonder to myself which one I would be able to live without the easiest.  None of them!  I guess taste would be the one I could give up, but to be blessed with the different capabilities of experiencing life!   What joy!

I am grateful for opposition.  Oh how blessed we are to have this in our every day lives!  And how often we think it a curse.  Imagine  feeling hurt all the time withouth feeling the happiness!  If we never felt the dark hour how would we recognize the light at the end of the tunnel?  If we couldn’t feel loneliness then how could we truly appreciate the love from others?  One emotion would be lost without the other.  Right now I feel that my struggle is getting to be beyond what I am capable of and I am desperately trying to imagine the strength I will have once I have endured.  It is so difficult and painful.  So painful.  But without the knowledge that there is an opposite to this feeling and knowing what peace that feeling will bring to me, I might just give up all together.  Does is shock you to hear that?  Sadly, this is where I’m at.  So yes, I am grateful for opposition.

I am grateful for the unconditional love of a child.

I am grateful for the acceptance of my husband.

I am grateful for the honesty of my friends, and the interventions they play to remind me of who I am and what I am capable of when I am so blind to it.

I am grateful for traditions.  The ones that Greg and I grew up with that we have kept in our own little family, and the ones he and I have created over the years.  What comfort they bring, and what an impact they have on the kids!  Atalie will be doing an expository essay and the prompt was “what is it that you like/what is it that you dislike?”.  (This is part of the school district’s writing assessment.)  Atalie has chosen to write about traditions during Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Not about the turkey-day feast with our friends or presents from Santa, but about the cinnamon rolls, the game playing, the anticipation she feels as she waits upstairs on Christmas morning while Greg & I turn on the Christmas tree lights and holiday music.  The excitement of who finds the Christmas spider that morning to find out who gets to hand out the gifts.  THIS is what is special and memorable to her.  I feel warm and fuzzy inside to know this and to know that it isn’t the materialistic things that her mind goes to.  Thank you mom, dad, Russell, and Penny for instilling traditions in Greg & I so that we could continue them with our kids.

I am grateful for being grateful.  It seems that when I feel down and can find so much to complain about that if I do that balancing act (previous post I’m Unbalanced) then I feel better inside.  A simple, yet difficult thing to do.

One comment on “

  1. Colleen November 22, 2010 4:45 AM

    You are a blessed woman, Mandi, and all the more blessed by the fact that you realize it! I sure love you Deputys!

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