Weekly Review: Gratitude, Books, and Taking a Break

Week In Review: Children’s Books, Gratitude, and a Taking a Break from Writing

We’ve had a lovely week with a lot to be grateful for, a lot to pray for, and a lot of soul searching about what will happen in the fall.

This past week has been a bit of a whirlwind, and I expect the next couple of weeks will be no different. As we prepare to move back into our home in Kingston, we’re trying to visit with family and friends before the packing frenzy begins. We don’t have a lot to pack as we have no furniture, but we do still have clothes, books, kitchenware, etc., so it’ll be good to leave the last few days we have in London for packing rather than visiting.

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Books & Gratitude

Gratitude and books… gratitude for books… week in review.

A couple of years ago I thought I’d write down everything I was thankful for on a daily basis. I was inspired by The Book of Awesome, which really is awesome, to recognize all the great things in my life. While I do still feel grateful for a lot in my life, the habit of writing it down has been lost along the way. I’m starting over, though I’m being more realistic this time. Rather than writing it every day, I’m going to be writing it once per week.

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Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: Showing the earth gratitude

On our journey to living with more gratitude, the earth and what she offers should be foremost in our minds. The only planet in our vast universe to support life (as far as we know), the earth is an amazing place. Unfortunately, humans have never been very good at living out the gratitude we should feel for our home.

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Take Nothing for Granted

Sometimes, when you’re going through a rough time, or when depression may be showing its ugly face again, it may be hard to feel grateful for what you do have. It’s easy to despair when chronic illness causes debilitating pain, or when luck doesn’t seem to be on your side.

But even during these difficult times, it’s important to remember the things you should be grateful for. Indeed, developing a gratitude habit could actually help you through these tough times. Even if the world seems against you, chances are, if you’re reading this, you have a lot to be thankful for. Take nothing for granted. Remember your good fortune, even in the middle of a crisis. Doing so will help you to find the silver linings in every situation, and in turn, will help you lead a happier life.

 

take nothing for granted, www.marianamcdougall.com, woman holding sunflower, Photo by Nicole Honeywill on Unsplash

1. If you’re reading this, you have an Internet connection.

Even if you’re borrowing your friend’s laptop or cell phone, or visiting the library so you can use the Internet for free, you have a way of getting information and connecting with the world. Don’t take this for granted, as not everyone is granted this luxury.

2. If you’re reading this, you probably have enough to eat.

If you can use a phone or computer, you’re probably able to purchase enough food to not go hungry. Or you have the skills to access a Food Bank or ask your neighbourhood friends to help you. And if you have a phone or computer but can’t do these things, you need to shift your priorities a little. 

3. If you’re reading this, you probably have clean water to drink.

And even if your community is under a boil water advisory, you probably can still turn on the faucet instead of travelling for hours before carrying a heavy water bucket back to your community. Clean water should be a basic right, yet many the world over view it as a luxury, because they have no other choice.

 

These three things may seem so simple that it’s hard to feel grateful for them, especially in times of crisis. But developing a gratitude habit is an act of taking absolutely nothing for granted. Remember to be thankful for the little things, and soon enough, the bigger things will find you (or you’ll have enough gratitude and energy to find them).

What are you grateful for today?

Travel Makes Me Happy

A long time ago, I had decided I’d write a quick post about something I was thankful for each day. Reality is that publishing this post every day just didn’t happen. But I do want to try this again, so I’m going to try and see if I can at least publish one post per week about the things I’m thankful for. And what better day to do it than on #ThankfulThursday? 

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Gratitude & Self-Care: An Intimate Connection

If you’re trying to develop a gratitude habit, remembering your self-care is important. Although these two things may seem completely unrelated, they’re really not: self-care is a way of showing gratitude for your body. 

Your body is the only thing you’ll know you’ll have for the rest of your life. Whether you have an amazing body that does everything the way you want it to, or a bruised, battered body, or a body that doesn’t always act the way it should, your body is yours. It carries you through this life and allows you to experience everything our earth has to offer. 

Developing a gratitude habit sometimes takes effort, but if you start with your own self-care and being grateful for your body, it can become a little easier.

It can be hard to make time for self-care. That’s why I’ve written a simple document with 50 self-care ideas that take 10 minutes or less.

Sign up for the mailing list for your FREE copy!

 

Swing Dancing and Old Friends

This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you purchase something after following a link on this post, I may receive a small commission. Rest assured that I only recommend products and services that I use and love, or that I want to use in the near future.

Roughly 16 years ago, I met my husband at the University of Western Ontario’s swing dance club, Swing Kids. Roughly two years before that, way back in 1999, my brother had dragged me to a swing dancing event at Chicago’s Willowbrook Ballroom (well, sort of Chicago. Close enough). I reluctantly went, sure that 1930’s dancing would be extremely boring. In my defense, I was 17 at the time, and knew absolutely nothing about swing dancing. Well, to my surprise, it was great fun, and I was hooked right away. How could you not be, when you got to take a lesson to learn how to dance and then got to dance with pretty much everyone – and to a live band, no less!

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All the nice things… from (almost) all the days I didn’t post

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Monday, January 23rd, 2017

Trains and visits from grandma

Today my mom (whom my kids call Vó Bia) came to stay for a 5-day visit. It’s been a while since she was able to come from London, ON to Kingston, ON, so we were looking forward to her coming to see us. We picked her up at the train station, then headed straight to the YMCA for the kids’ swimming and jump rope lessons. Dan met us there, and I headed out to grab some pizzas, because we didn’t have time to make anything to bring with us for dinner.

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