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Posts tagged “Gratitude

The little things… day 30

SONGS

Those who wish to sing always find a song.  ~Proverb

I’m grateful for…
Songs that uplift me and remind me it is a wonderful world, regardless of all the things beyond your control.

I’m letting go of…
Listening to sad and depressing songs… I am so over that.  It helped when I was in high school, when I needed to cry until I ran out of snot!  I need to find more inspiring and positive songs to listen to.

I’d like to end this series with a song, instead of a picture.  My favorite songs in my favorite version.  What should have taken a month, took four months to finish this series.  Life happened is the best way I can describe it.  I know I promised a few weeks ago that I would do better and get back to daily blogging, but that didn’t happen.  Starting tomorrow, I will try again.

I hope you enjoyed the series of gratitude, being thankful for the little things that we take for granted everyday.  Before I jump on to the next series, i will post a few recipes and some photos – then off to the next series… acts of kindness.

Thank you for staying tuned… I love you guys!  Till my next posting, have a wonderful day and I hope you enjoy this song that I dedicate to you!

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The little things… day 29

FALL

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.  ~Albert Camus

I’m grateful for…
The beauty of this season, the clear blue skies, crisp cold air and colorful landscapes.    

I’m letting go of…
Dreading the next season  because I know there is beauty to be found in winter.

Whenever fall arrives, it always makes me think of the seasons in my own life.  Just like the leaves, I want to grow old beautifully, colorful and vibrant!


The little things… day 28

WORD GAMES

A man should never be ashamed to own he has been in the wrong, which is but saying… that he is wiser today than he was yesterday.  ~Alexander Pope, in Swift, Miscellanies

I’m grateful for…
Quiet Sunday mornings when the dogs and the kid are still asleep and I get to play scrabble with hubby… all the made up words he thinks he’s getting away with… learning how to spell better… finding out I’ve been using certain words in the wrong context.   

I’m letting go of…
Using the excuse that English is my second language… excessive use of my phone to play word games -  I would much rather see hubby’s expression when I get 75 points on scrabble using 2 tiles.   

Scrabble is our favorite word game.  We also love Bananagrams and Boggle.  Sometimes, it takes us four hours to play just one game, yes we use the dictionary and take our time.  Do you like word games too? 


The little things… day 27

SUMMER AFTERNOONS

Summer afternoon—summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language. ~Henry James

I’m grateful for…
A season that brings longer days and makes lounging a great excuse to enjoy the sun!  

I’m letting go of…
Complaining about the bugs this warm weather brings.  I know, it’s all part of our ecological system but I do find pleasure hearing the zzzt from the bug zapper.

We have one week left in summer, I can’t believe fall is around the corner.  I hope you enjoy the rest of this season, have a great weekend everyone!


The little things… day 26

CHILDHOOD MEMORIES

Memory is a child walking along a seashore.  You never can tell what small pebble it will pick up and store away among its treasured things.  ~Pierce Harris, Atlanta Journal

I’m grateful for…
Moments I can reflect upon, that warm my heart and lift my spirits.

I’m letting go of…
Holding on to painful and bitter memories.

I don’t think any of us had a perfect childhood, but some have defined themselves the person they are now; because of it.  A scent, a place, a song… those are triggers you have no control of.  We can’t pick and choose what we remember and how we feel about it, but it’s still up to you to use them in a way that benefits you most. 

Life is what you make of it and that includes how you process what happened to you as a child.  Sometimes even happy memories can make you resentful, if you let them.  I wish I can encapsulate those good feelings and take a dose when needed or stumble upon a time machine in my backyard and go back to those happy moments.  But hey, not all of us want to be Peter Pan because growing up is just as beautiful as childhood. 

The not-so-pleasant memories can give you strength, instead of a cold heart.  It can make you wiser, not rebellious or angry.  It can make you see the difference between good and bad, not a victim.  Then some memories are best left alone in the past.  You don’t have to analyze everything all the time – it’s one of those “it is what it is”.

When I think about the many wonderful moments of my childhood, I smile (or cry, it depends what time of the month).  When I think about the sad moments, I give my self a moment to process it.

My childhood was great with sad moments and I have found “counter memories” to be helpful.  For example, the memory of my grandmother’s passing is sad.  Then I counter that memory of mornings with her watching the sun rise before tending to her garden.  As I work on my collection of counter memories, I cannot believe how many great and wonderful childhood memories I have, for that I am grateful.

What are your happy childhood memories?


The little things… day 25

TIME

Out of 86,400 seconds we get each day, I think we can spend 10 of it counting our blessings. ~ Christine Sternfels

I’m grateful for…
Time I am given each and every day.  Time to pray, time for myself, time for my family, time for work, time for leisure and time to do absolutely nothing at all!

I’m letting go of…
Wishing there were more than 24 hours in each day, I would probably be exhausted everyday if that were so.

First of all, I’d like to apologize for reducing my daily blog down to a weekly post.  That is temporary.  I’ve been putting so much time on finding ways to raise funds for my non-profit organization that I’ve forgotten about my love…  pictures and words.  Oh well I guess the kids and hubby too!  In addition to being so focused, I’ve neglected to set aside some time for my family.  Can someone please kick my behind?

Time… It’s the one thing you can’t buy and holds more value than the most expensive possession you’ve ever had.  It’s also what most of us take for granted and should be more mindful of more often.  It isn’t something we can ever get back.  It moves too swiftly, yet not fast enough for others.  We are all given this, how you use it is up to you.  So now, I will take some time away from the computer and spend it with my family, under the stars, in front of the bay and away from my crazy routine… Have a great weekend everyone!


The little things… day 24

ICE CREAM!

An ice cream cone can solve any problem— even if it’s only for a few minutes. ~Anonymous

I’m grateful for…
Yogurt shops that have mastered fat-free and sugar-free ice cream tasting treats!  That I am not lactose intolerant.  Hot summer days, when ice cream seems to be the only solution to cooling down.

I’m letting go of…
Thinking ice cream is just for desert.

Ok, so there are a few people who don’t love ice cream like some of us do, but can you imagine a world without it?  There’s something about eating ice cream that makes me feel like a kid, every lick down to your fingers always brings back some happy childhood memory.  Not to mention how yummy it is!  When was the last time you enjoyed a scoop or two? 


The little things… day 23

SHOES

I wept because I had no shoes, until I saw a man who had no feet.  ~Ancient Persian saying

The quote says what I am grateful for and letting go of.  Simple, but says a lot.

This past weekend, we volunteered to help Child United pack over a hundred over-sized boxes of clothing, shoes, books and toys for kids affected in the recent typhoons that devastated parts of Central Philippines.  These shoes were donated by a child who still wore them, they still fit him.  I was told that one of them was his favorite pair… but he donated them anyway, because he knew another child thousands of miles away (a child he doesn’t even know) needs them more than he does.  I am also thankful for big and kind-hearted kids who do these amazing things.

Look at your shoes, reflect on all the journeys they have been through with you.  Be they sweet or bitter memories, there are always blessings to be counted.

Have a great week everyone.

   


The little things… day 22

TRAILS

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar,
I love not man the less, but Nature more.

~George Gordon, Lord Byron, Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage

I’m grateful for…
Trails that lead you to breathtaking surprises.  The things you find and learn along the way.  The endorphins that kick in after trekking through a national forest.  The memories you create.

I’m letting go of…
Complaining why we can’t drive to places like this.

This picture was taken at Cape Flattery in Neah Bay, WA, the most northwestern tip in the contiguous US.  There were no enhancements done on this picture taken from my cell phone, and it’s beautiful isn’t it?  There are many wonderful places we’ve yet to find.  Go and find a trail… discover what nature has in store for you.

   


The little things… day 21

OUR PETS

Dogs’ lives are too short.  Their only fault, really.  ~Agnes Sligh Turnbull

I’m grateful for…
Our dogs.  They love unconditionally, don’t judge, lick the stress out of you, comfort you just by being there.  They are the best companions, always look at you admiringly, hand you their paw just to say “Hey, are you doing ok?  I’m here for you.”

I’m letting go of…
Shooing them away when all they want to do is cuddle.  I know he’s a 90 pound labrador, why should I be upset if he thinks he’s a lap dog?  Disconnecting myself when they’re needy.  Ignoring them because tv is more interesting.  Yelling at them after they ate through your kid’s backpack just to get to that stick of gum.

The dog in this picture is Hasha, my brother’s dog.  She passed away a few days ago, she was eleven.  We held her in our arms as she drew her last breath on the cold aluminum table at the vet clinic this past Saturday morning.  She was such a good dog.

Our lives are so busy that we neglect to make an effort to really enjoy our pets.  When they pass away, we can’t help but think of what we could have done better or the time that we will never get to spend with them because they are gone.  We often forget to celebrate their lives and acknowledge the good we’ve done because we grieve over their loss and can’t help but make it about us and our feelings.  But at some point, we need to make it about them and all the good memories, all the wonderful times we spent together.  Never forget they knew you loved them.

My two dogs Charlie and Daisy are still alive.  Charlie’s eleven and Daisy’s nine.  Losing Hasha has made me realize that I need to be a better dog owner.  I need to make more time to enjoy them, while they’re still around.  I know I will grieve when they are gone but I hope to remember to also celebrate their life while we were blessed with them. 

We’ll miss you Hasha.  We’ll miss you girl.

   


The little things… day 20

DANCING

You can dance anywhere, even if only in your heart.  ~Author Unknown

I’m grateful for…
The joy I feel when I’m dancing.  The calories I burn when I dance to my favorite tunes (I love disco!) while I’m cleaning the house or cooking and making a mess in the kitchen.  The rhythm and the right foot my husband has developed, now I don’t feel like I’m dancing with a pendulum (I love you honey).

I’m letting go of…
Thinking I’m too old to go out dancing with my girl friends.  The fear of line dancing.  Dreaming that one day I will learn the Argentinian Tango.  Tried it, failed it – I’m sticking to the electric slide.

When was the last time you danced?


The little things… day 19

 

ADVENTURE

Life is either a great adventure or nothing.  ~Helen Keller

I’m grateful for…
The adventures I’ve had in my life, across the world especially or in my kitchen.

I’m letting go of…
Over planning some vacations.  I usually have more fun when I just plan the destination and length of stay, instead of scheduling “Must see” attractions every day.

Adventures don’t need to be grand or expensive.  Sometimes it’s as simple as pitching a tent in your backyard, getting everyone dressed as super heroes (yes, including the dogs) and pretending you’re stranded on a planet with no way back to earth as aliens invade it and you’re the only hope to save the human race.  Or pretending you’re James Bond and you and your lady friend have to leave a secret message by tagging a tunnel with purple spray paint.

PS… I don’t condone vandalism, but this picture was screaming adventure to me, don’t you think?

Have a wonderful and adventurous day!


The little things… day 18

FAILURE

If you’re doing your best, you’re not failing.  You only fail if you quit or don’t even try at all because you were too scared to fail. ~ Christine Sternfels

I’m grateful for…
Lessons learned from the many, many failures I’ve succeeded in attaining.  Strength gained from pain I had to endure from all my failures.  Love and support my family continued to give in times of my lowest low.  Some wisdom from having to experience one failure after another.  A chance at a fresh start.

I’m letting go of…
Thinking that finishing last is failing.  Giving too much thought to what people might think if I failed.  Success is too far away because I’ve failed too much.  Being discouraged to get up every time I fall.  Giving in to defeat just because I had a weak moment.

Failure is something that happens, not you.  So get up, brush it off and start all over again… now.


The little things… day 17

FRIENDSHIPS

A friend accepts us as we are yet helps us to be what we should.  ~Author Unknown

I’m grateful for…
Friends near and far, old and new… and yes, even the divas and drama queens!

I love my girls.  They have prevented me from going crazy, although some of them drive me crazy.  They tell me when I’m being ridiculous without blinking an eye.  They laugh with me, cry with me and celebrate life with me.  They will drink wine and eat chocolates with me even if they’re on a diet!  I am so grateful to have beautiful, wonderful friends in my life.

I’m letting go of…
Conditional friendship.  I know sometimes I expect a little too much from my friends.  Just because I would do almost anything for them, I should never expect that in return.  Working on it… but sometimes my feelings get hurt because I’ve put that expectation on them.

Hug your friends today.  Let them know how much they mean to you.

 


The little things… day 16

WALKS

Ever wonder where you’d end up if you took your dog for a walk and never once pulled back on the leash?  ~Robert Brault 

I’m grateful for…
The use of my legs, allowing me to go for walks.  My daughter, who drags me out on a beautiful day to take a stroll.  My dogs who look at me, begging to be taken out.     

I’m letting go of…
Being too lazy on a beautiful summer day, choosing to stay inside instead of going for a walk. 

~

It really is amazing how many wonderful discoveries we stumble upon when we venture out on a path, in the woods or a trail. What’s even more amazing is how clear my mind gets after a good walk and how much better my mood and creativity gets.  It has been proven that walking is good for you, but just like eating veggies and healthy treats… I don’t know why it’s such a chore!  Ok, going for a walk now.  See you tomorrow.   


The little things… day 15

BEAUTY

The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched, they must be felt with the heart ~ Helen Keller 

I’m grateful for…
Inner beauty.  The source of love, compassion, empathy and kindness. 

I’m letting go of…
Judging a book by its cover. 

I’m back and I’ve missed you guys! 

The wedding was beautiful, my daughter was stunning, my new son looked dashing in his tuxedo and everyone had a wonderful time.  Their photographer took over 4,000 (yes-three zeroes) pictures and I don’t know when we’ll be getting the proofs.  I will do a montage when we get them and share that with you.  For now, I must share my favorite picture – which was taken by their dj.

I hope everyone’s having a great summer so far!


The little things… day 14

PROMISES

 Promise little and do much. ~Hebrew Proverb 

I’m grateful for…
The hope a promise can bring, the good ones that were fulfilled, the bad ones that failed, the life  that emerges from well-intended ones.

I’m letting go of…
Making too many promises that I feel is “fixing” the situation at hand.  Promises are like little packages of dynamite, that if not handled properly – it can explode and hurt you and everyone else around it.

My daughter’s getting married next week!  It’s bitter-sweet, but I am so blessed she found a wonderful man who is her best friend and he simply adores her.  In one week, they will be promising their lives to each other and my child will now add “Wife” to the list of who she is. 

One day, she will add “Mom” and I am eager to be “Lola” (This is what Filipinos call their grand mothers).  She promised to have one within four years and I promised to spoil them as soon as they arrive.  So many promises! 

With all the preparation for the festivities and family coming into town, I will not be posting for the remainder of the month.  We Filipinos like to celebrate before, during and after weddings, then I will need to recover for a few days.  I will miss you all but I will be back in August.  I hope you’re all having a great summer so far, take care!


The little things… day 13

HANDS

 As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.   ~Audrey Hepburn

~

I’m grateful for…
The use of my hands.  With it, I can hold my husband’s hand when we go for walks… paint my daughter’s toe nails, while she paints mine… make a feast, toast to life and hold a wine glass… unwrap chocolate… caress a baby’s soft cheek… comfort a friend… close a business deal… take pictures… draw… paint… create… give… I can keep going!

I’m letting go of…
Taking my hands for granted and take care of it better.

It’s amazing how much value you find something to be when you think about what it would be like without it.


The little things… day 12

KINDNESS

 In a world full of people who couldn’t care less, be someone who couldn’t care more.  ~Author Unknown

~

I’m grateful for…
Random acts of kindness.  It doesn’t need to cost much to make you feel like a million bucks!   

I’m letting go of…
Trying to figure out “big” ways of helping to make an impact.  It’s the little acts of kindness that amount to something bigger.


The little things… day 11

LAUGHTER

A day without laughter is a day wasted. ~Charlie Chaplin

~

I’m grateful for…
Moments that make me laugh.  It literally turns my frown upside down.  Have you ever laughed so hard, it made you cry?  Those are the best kind. 

I’m letting go of…
The urge to laugh at people, unless they are trying to make me laugh on purpose.  I know it’s mean to laugh at people, but we do it anyway.  Someone points something out “Look at her hair!”  You chuckle, laugh and stop for a moment and say “That’s so mean…” and then you laugh again.  I really need to work on that.


The little things… day 10

CELEBRATIONS

You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness.  You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.  ~Erma Bombeck

~

I’m grateful for…
Picnics, fireworks and the ribs that will be on the grill today.

I’m letting go of…
Being anal about details.  So what if Elmo is on the napkins, Barbie is on the cups, the plates are in easter colors and the table covers have Hawaiian decor?  It’s a picnic people, it’s supposed to be colorful!  Ok, maybe you can wear a bandana with red, white and blue.

Happy 4th of July!  Have fun and be safe.


The little things… day 8

SUNSETS

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.  ~Lao Tzu

~

I’m grateful for…
The beauty of sunsets and reflections of the day’s goings on.  The anticipation of rest and a reminder that life is going forward.

I’m letting go of…
Procrastination.  It only makes me feel bad at the end of the day knowing I could have accomplished something I was too lazy to do.

My lesson is to use my time wisely, wether it be for work or rest so I may better enjoy sunsets.


The little things… day 7

CHANGE

When the tides of life turn against you and the current upsets your boat, don’t waste those tears on what might have been, just lie on your back and float. ~Author Unknown

~

I’m grateful for…
New life that change brings, lessons from unexpected shifts and the promise of a new day.

I’m letting go of…
My desire to resist some changes, regret over ones gone wrong and fear of changes to come.

The lesson is to just go with the flow.


The little things… day 6

LOVE

Be everything with so much love in your heart that you would never want to do it any other way.  ~Amrit Desai

~

I’m grateful for…
That my husband still calls me beautiful and still opens and closes the door for me after fourteen years of marriage.

I’m letting go of…
The urge to make unnecessary remarks when he gets on my nerves.


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