July 29, 2013

An attitude of gratitude

I had planned a different post for today, but my heart is so filled with an attitude of gratitude that I simply couldn't think of a better way to start the week than by sharing some of the things that make me so very thankful. I had originally planned to write about the "first Thanksgiving" at Berkeley Plantation, which certainly ties in nicely with gratitude and giving thanks, but oh my, there's so much more...
For starters, TODAY IS MY ONE YEAR BLOG ANNIVERSARY!  I can't believe how fast the year has gone, and when I started I never dreamed that I could find something to write about almost every day, love it so much and in the process have fun and gain new friends from literally around the world.  I am so very grateful to each and every one of you that read my blog and let me know that occasionally something resonates with you or you enjoy one of the pictures or poems. 
I had also planned to write a little about my weekend camping trip to Door County, but sometimes life takes a turn and if you are flexible and can turn with it amazing things can happen!  My husband and I took Friday off, got up early and packed the car in anticipation of a three day weekend of hiking, golf, campfires and time spent together under the stars.  Didn't quite happen that way!  Here was the view from the car:
and of the campsite next to ours:
I would consider myself a pretty hardcore camper, with a can-do attitude.  But I have my limits.  And not only would we be putting our tent up in driving rain, the park rangers were predicting an even heavier storm system to arrive a couple of hours later!  Sometimes you just have to know when to give up.  So we said goodbye to Door County and drove back home...nine hours total in the car.  Well, since I try to be really honest in this blog, my husband drove and I pouted.  I was so disappointed.

I'll now leave out the part about arriving back home, unpacking all the clothes, food and camping equipment, and discovering that our sons were throwing a small party in our absence.  Which was fine, except it kind of left us with nowhere to relax, as our family room was now full of young men, pizza boxes and game controllers.  When it rains, it pours, right?!

So here is where the "thankful" part comes in.  Saturday morning my husband woke me up early and said "come on, we weren't supposed to be home today, so let's go find an adventure."  Exactly thirty minutes and one cup of coffee later we were out the door!  I had often heard that Galena, IL was a great place to visit but neither of us had ever been there.  The map said we were only 88 miles from Galena, so it seemed like a perfect place for a day trip.
View of Galena from Grant's Park
We had an amazing time.  You almost feel like you have time traveled back to the 1800's, and its Main Street has been voted one of the "Top Ten Great Places in America."  Since we both love history we had a blast walking around the town and checking out all the beautiful historic homes.  We're already plotting a return visit, since there was simply too much to do and see in just one day.  So what could have been a dreary, disappointing day at home turned into a wonderful time.  Needless to say, I am very thankful for my wonderful husband, who made sure our weekend still was fun!
The sun even came out for a while in the afternoon!
And being home all day on Sunday gave me the unexpected opportunity to work on two outdoor projects, sew three pillow covers and finish the first two rows of my very first quilt! And I am very thankful for my new sewing machine and the fact that I only had to take out stitches once to make sure I lined the seams up correctly. 

At the end of the weekend, my heart was filled with thanksgiving...I had a wonderful time with my husband, visited a new town, had time to hang out with two of my sons and phone chat with my daughter, have several nice telephone visits with my mother, and spend time doing creative projects that bring me joy.

We can discuss the merits of who has ultimate claiming rights to the first Thanksgiving in November, but until then I will celebrate my own weekend giving of thanks...for all of you and how much you enrich my life.  Thank you.

A List of Praises

  by Anne Porter
Give praise with psalms that tell the trees to sing,
Give praise with Gospel choirs in storefront churches,
Mad with the joy of the Sabbath, 
Give praise with the babble of infants, who wake with the sun,
Give praise with children chanting their skip-rope rhymes, 
A poetry not in books, a vagrant mischievous poetry 
living wild on the Streets through generations of children.

Give praise with the sound of the milk-train far away 
With its mutter of wheels and long-drawn-out sweet whistle
As it speeds through the fields of sleep at three in the morning,
Give praise with the immense and peaceful sigh
Of the wind in the pinewoods, 
At night give praise with starry silences. 

Give praise with the skirling of seagulls 
And the rattle and flap of sails 
And gongs of buoys rocked by the sea-swell
Out in the shipping-lanes beyond the harbor. 
Give praise with the humpback whales, 
Huge in the ocean they sing to one another.
Give praise with the rasp and sizzle of crickets, katydids and cicadas, 
Give praise with hum of bees, 
Give praise with the little peepers who live near water.
When they fill the marsh with a shimmer of bell-like cries
We know that the winter is over. 

Give praise with mockingbirds, day's nightingales.
Hour by hour they sing in the crepe myrtle 
And glossy tulip trees
On quiet side streets in southern towns.
Give praise with the rippling speech
Of the eider-duck and her ducklings
As they paddle their way downstream
In the red-gold morning 
On Restiguche, their cold river,
Salmon river, 
Wilderness river. 

Give praise with the whitethroat sparrow.
Far, far from the cities, 
Far even from the towns, 
With piercing innocence 
He sings in the spruce-tree tops,
Always four notes 
And four notes only. 

Give praise with water, 
With storms of rain and thunder 
And the small rains that sparkle as they dry,
And the faint floating ocean roar 
That fills the seaside villages, 
And the clear brooks that travel down the mountains 

And with this poem, a leaf on the vast flood,
And with the angels in that other country.
- See more at: http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/20501#sthash.px7Sg2fd.dpuf

1 comment:

  1. What a beautiful post! First, Happy 1st Blogging Anniversary to one of my favorite bloggers! Congratulations. I'm so glad your weekend was salvaged by that trip to Galena. I've never been there but have always heard how charming that town is. It sounds like everything turned out for the best.