This Thanksgiving finds me grateful for many things. As usual, it’s the simple necessities that I can call mine which bring me the most satisfaction and awe. Here are 25 of them.
1) I have a roof over my head, and it doesn’t leak.
2) My house is warm.
3) My pets are loved, well-cared for, and have plenty of room to roam.
4) My family members are (mostly) healthy and happy.
5) My circle of friends and community is expanding and stable and interesting.
6) Fleece sheets. Who knew such things existed, but are they ever so warm and cozy.
7) This gorgeous Utah landscape that surrounds me, which is endlessly fascinating, challenging, beautiful, serene, vast, and wild.
8 ) The pinyon and juniper and aspen wood that burns with such intensity in my stove, keeping me warm this winter. I especially appreciate it since I gathered and split most of it myself, with the help of a friend.
9) Afternoon sunlight arcing against the bare trees across the street from my house, highlighting them against a storm-dark sky.
10) The little traveled trails around my home, leading to miles upon miles of beckoning wilderness that is mine to explore and share.
11) The awe-inspiring national parks that all lie within a few hours of my home, one within a few minutes.
12) My spotted horse, fuzzy in his winter coat, who always pricks his ears when I visit him in anticipation of an apple or other equine-tasty treat.
13) The fact that I live back of beyond yet have (mostly) reliable Internet.
14) My neighbor, for more reasons than I can list.
15) The fact that I went skydiving this year, lived to tell about its breathtaking exhilaration, and never need to do it again.
16) The nighttime span of sky over my head. It is among the most star-studded in the country. The Milky Way never fails to catch my breath when I see it so clearly above.
17) That I can drive less than a mile from my house and explore wild public lands–with rarely another soul around.
18) Coffee. Every morning.
19) Sunrise over the Henry Mountains.
20) The honesty of true friends.
21) The heartbreak of experience, which eventually leads me to deeper peace.
22) My grandmother and mother for loving me unconditionally and teaching me that homemade pierogies are the best.
23) Chacos. I own eight pairs, and I wear them almost every day when it’s not freezing. And they leave the coolest-looking foot tan.
24) That my senses and my body are all intact and work. (Well, the eyes are aging, but I can still see!)
25) A certain spot along the Fremont River by my home that’s nestled into wild grasses, tamarisk, and the sheltering red cliffs that rise above.
What makes you grateful? What makes you give thanks this season, especially in a country that sees so much struggle and dissension and strife and shouted differences? Tell me about the beautiful things in your life, no matter how small they might seem. Share the things that bring a smile to your face and an enjoyment of your life, even in the darker moments.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. May this one find you surrounded by family, friends, love, and hearty food.
“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” ~William Arthur Ward
[photo courtesy of riptheskull/Flickr]