They say when you're feeling down to look at the good things in life and think about what you're grateful for. So, here it goes (these are in no particular order, by the way).
1. My amazing, patient, loving, handsome, strong, smart, and just 100% perfect for me husband. He is opposite to me in so many ways but fills in my gaps and I fill in his. He is my shoulder to lean on, to cry on. He loves me despite of me!
2. My supportive, loving family, both my family and my in-laws-I'm doubly blessed! I don't know how my parents put up with me for so long and my brother and sister are my best friends in life. My mother-in-law and I are so alike it's scary and I get along with all of my in-laws so well. It's so nice when walking on life's scary high wires to know that I have the support net of my family to catch me if I fall.
3. My extended family-I was fortunate to grow up with strong relationships to my extended family. I grew up with both sets of my grandparents in the same town as me and spent so much time with them. And even though all of my grandparents have passed away just in the past few years, I still feel their influence in my life every day. I even was fortunate to know two great-grandmas. And I have so many wonderful aunts, uncles, and cousins. Family gives me so much strength!
4. My bubby...Gimli. He's my 120 lb., hairy baby and he always loves me no matter what. He licks my tears away when I cry and cuddles up to me when I'm sad. He makes me laugh and let's me be his doggy mommy.By the way, in this picture of Gimli, he was kind of ticked at me because I kept putting leaves on his head. I'm always taking pictures of him, he should just get used to it! =)
5. My religion and faith. I don't know where I would be without my faith in a loving Heavenly Father and if I didn't know of the things that Jesus Christ has done for me. My world would definitely be dark without knowing who I am, why I'm here, and what happens in the next life.
6. This beautiful world. I love nature and so many times the beauty of the world around me has comforted me, amazed me, and reminded me that there is a Higher Power that has control of everything. The soothing shush of the ocean, the swaying of the trees in the breeze, a golden sunset, the strong, solitary peace of the desert, the protection of the Rocky mountains, the bright pink and blue wake-me-up sunrises, an intricate, blossoming flower, a doe pausing from her evening meal to stare at me for a moment...every day and everywhere I go there is something to amaze me and overwhelm me with feelings of gratitude for this beautiful world.
7. For the amazing creatures of this world. I'm a total animal lover. Now I'll admit I'm not a fan of every creature (i.e. snakes and mice) but that doesn't mean I don't admire them. I used to rodeo and my best friend for almost twenty years was my horse, Banner. I am so grateful to have known such a noble and great spirit. I still can't sing the Star Spangled Banner without crying because that was her song. And if I could I think I would take in every stray animal I come across. Every animal is a wonder!
8. For this wonderful country I live in and the freedoms I enjoy. I am truly privileged and blessed to be an American. We have our faults and we make mistakes, but we're trying to get it right. My dad fought in the Vietnam War and always taught me to respect my country and those who fight to defend it. I am so grateful for those who sacrifice and fight to defend my freedom--to the soldiers and their families. God Bless the United States!
9. For the other countries and cultures of the world. I am amazed by the diversity and wonderfulness of the world. I lived in Italy for awhile and Italy holds a special place in my heart. I loved the people, the culture, and the beauty of Italy. My family is also Spanish and I love the culture that I was raised in. My grandma's tortillas and tamales, how I was my grandparent's 'hita', and the spiciness of that culture. I love learning about new cultures too. There is just so much to learn from and love about the different cultures of the world. Watching the Olympics this past week has been fun, seeing all the different athletes of the world coming together. It's been really cool.
10. For my good friends. How many times has a friend called and said they were just thinking of me and thought they should call? My friends keep me smiling and laughing and enjoying life. And those really good friends who even when you don't see each other for a long time, the minute you get together again, it's like you were never apart. My friends are so good to me! I'm always trying to be a better friend and be at least half as good as my friends are to me. In my neighborhood, at work, and all over the place I have such wonderful friends.
11. And my web friends. This is a new group of friends for me and I'm so thankful for them. Even though I haven't met any of these people, from reading their blogs or talking in forums, I feel like I'm hanging out with long time friends. For example, 'Your Average Infertility Blog' just announced that she's pregnant, and I felt so excited for her. Her blog has taken me on a journey with her, and it just feels so good to see her journey finally going in the right direction. I don't even know what she looks like, but share a web kinship with her nonetheless. =) And I'm so grateful to know that I'm not alone and that there are so many outstanding and strong women that I can relate to and turn to in hard times.
Well, I'm going to end my list there for now. There are so many other things that I'm grateful for but time is up. It's almost dinnertime and I'm still in my pajamas. Make that #12 of things I'm grateful for: lazy days and pajamas! I'll add to my list next time!
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