Posts Tagged ‘grateful’

Be Grateful for Family

Family is something to cherish. Family means everything to me. I am so grateful for the loving family I have and for its ever expanding size as well as deeper connections. We celebrate together, morn together, uphold each other and support each one another in good times and in bad. This is what family is all about.

Of course we don’t always agree on each other’s choices, but this is to be expected from all individuals. Real love shared within healthy families cut through disapproval, misunderstandings, and disagreements. When was the last time you laughed with your family? How about shared in a meal?

Life is precious, handle with loving care. Let your family members know how much they mean to you. Be grateful for your parents, grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, and cousins today. I sure am. These moments create strength and connection that infuse life with meaning.

Our very identities come from this family unit who name us, teach us, guide us, and of course love us; no matter what! Family is the foundation upon which we belong and extend to a much larger magnitude than biology. We are each part of a global family as human beings sharing this beautiful family. Many of us are part of a religious or spiritual family. Some of us are even part of an extended family from spouses and friends. This idea of family is made up of many factors and today, be grateful for whoever you choose to call your family. They are one-of-a-kind and are the primary source of love and support for each of us. Family is heritage. Family is culture. Family is faith. Family holds values and traditions that are unique to us all. Family reminds us that we are never alone on this journey called life and that we are inextricably connected to each other.

Be grateful for your family today. Treasure time spent together. Communicate your feelings of love and appreciation for your loved ones. Notice the warmth in each smile or hug. Breathe in these quiet moments, remembering them often. Give thanks for your family today.

Lazy Days

I love lazy days. I didn’t always though; in fact, they have become an acquired taste I’ve learned to enjoy without beating myself up for being non-productive. The reality is, lazy days allow us to rest and rejuvenate from a week or month of fast-paced, busy living! Some of you might be saying, “that’s what vacation is for”, but how often do we fill our vacations with hectic schedules in different scenery? I know I do because I don’t want to waste a minute of it, sleeping or heaven forbid relaxing as there is always something to do or see that’s new and it fills my need for adventure.

On the flip side, lazy days are schedule free with no time constraints or adventure. They are what my mom likes to call “drop dead days”. Morbid title I know, but it gets the point across. My mom has a bad habit of pushing herself to the brink of exhaustion before allowing herself to take one of these days. By then, she really was ready to “drop dead” and couldn’t push any longer. How many of us over-achievers or perfectionists does that sound like?

Nonetheless, you may be thinking, “What does this have to do with gratitude?”. Well read on. Just today, I gave myself one of these lazy days; well an afternoon, but that’s a start. Lately I’ve been feeling exhausted and run down, tired of all the commitments I’d gotten myself into and somewhat depressed. After church, I spent the rest of the day with my husband and our dog Buttercup. We played and talked; did much of nothing and it was wonderful. Just what the doctor ordered! Now I feel relaxed, refreshed, and motivated again;  my batteries are recharged and I’m more productive too.

So when was the last time you did absolutely nothing; perhaps took a nap or leisurely read a magazine, or even a few movies on TV and weren’t sick? Exactly. That’s the point of enjoying regular lazy days, cause they actually prevent illness! Plus you can enjoy them without all the nasty symptoms that come with a cold or flu. Which would you rather have; down time when on your terms or down time when you feel too bad to enjoy it!

My challenge for you is to choose regular lazy days before your life catches up with you or better yet, passes you by in a whirlwind of activity. Become the master of your schedule and take the time to smell the roses once in a while; it will reduce your stress as well. I am sure grateful I did and my relationship will be stronger for it.

Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the practice of being fully present in the moment. I have learned the importance of mindfulness while eating, listening to others, and completing daily activities, however there are many more opportunities for mindfulness. I love to start and end each day in gratitude for all the blessings in my life as it helps me stay alert to the limitless possibilities available in each and every activity. Turning mundane tasks like cleaning dishes or folding laundry can be transformed into meditative practices that help ground us in the present moment.

Do you find yourself on automatic pilot regularly? This happens when our bodies are engaged in a task and our minds are somewhere else. It is the opposite of mindfulness and the epitome of distraction. When I live my life on automatic pilot, I miss out on the joy and connection that is only available in the present moment.

Thankfully, practicing mindfulness is easier than you might think. All that is required is complete attention on the very thing which you are doing NOW.  That means, no more multi-tasking! The truth is, human beings were never designed to complete two tasks as once and whenever we go against God’s Divine Design, we miss out. Harnessing the power of mindfulness becomes easier with practice and soon appreciation follows for all the gifts that follow; least of which is simplicity, focus, clarity, and peace.

So, try practicing Mindfulness today and allow the present moment to cleanse you in ways you can’t even imagine.

Today, I am thankful and grateful for the many blessings available to me each and every moment. I am open to increased clarity, focus, joy, and peace as I practice mindfulness in everything that I do.

The blessings of air conditioning

Summer’s hot and there’s nothing better than crisp, cold, air conditioning (okay, besides water/pool/lake/ocean and maybe ice cream). Regardless, if you live in a humid region or experience dry, desert heat, summertime is much nicer with a continual blast of cool air. Fans only blow the heat around and don’t provide much difference. Swamp coolers only work in dry heat since they add moisture to the air somewhat like misters. If you want moisture sucked out of the air and to be kept cool, then central air conditioning is for YOU!
I think this is one of the best inventions ever created and am so grateful to be enjoying it right now! How about you?