Sunday, November 29, 2009

Gratitude

Like most of you, I've been thinking a lot about gratitude this week. In June, when I was still teaching the Young Women at church, we had a lesson on being grateful. It included a challenge to keep a gratitude journal. It's not a new idea. I've heard of them before and thought they sounded great, but had never actually tried one myself.

I decided to accept the challenge. I got a cute little notebook and kept it on my night stand. Each night I would jot down a sentence or two about what I was grateful for. I'm not a good daily journal keeper, but since it only took a minute, I found that I could keep up with it. It even made the cross-country trek with me this summer. I've written in it every night except for two weeks when I misplaced it.

As I read through some of the entries last night, I was uplifted. I have so much to be thankful for. The process was especially helpful on bad days. Days when I just felt like having a pity party. I forced myself to write down at least one thing that I could be grateful for. And it helped. Tremendously.

The resounding themes of the past six months were family, friends, the gospel, and food. Sounds about right. I found myself reading about them over and over. I hope I tell all of you how much I appreciate you and I don't just keep it secretly in my little journal.

One of the more touching entries, something I don't want to forget:

June 17, 2009 I'm grateful to have a roof over my head. Tonight I talked with an acquaintance who has been living in a homeless shelter for the past few weeks. When I asked her how she was doing, she said, "Well, I'm alive and I'm not in pain, so that's a blessing." What an amazing attitude! So grateful for her example.

Here are some of the more random things I recorded.

I AM GRATEFUL FOR:

*Sunday afternoon naps

*Access to dental care

*The internet

*Long phone conversations

*Fireflies

*My van


*Baseball

*Date nights

*Museums

*Nights spent around a table playing games with loved ones

*Air conditioning

*BYU

*Cell phones

*Joe, the Autozone employee who installed my new battery

*Our garden

*Tall trees that shade us on morning walks

*Book club

*Fantasy football

*Personal prayer

*Music

*Washing machine & dryer

*Sand

*Retail therapy

*Grapefruit

*So You Think You Can Dance

*Hot tub

*Legos

9 comments:

Natalie said...

I love that So you think you can dance is on your list.

The Oregonians said...

We're glad to see grapefruit, long naps and BYU (especially when they beat UofU 26-23 in the closing moments of overtime.)

carmar76 said...

I'm grateful for this post!

amy said...

I need to join a book club and eat a grapefruit. Those things have been absent from my life for too long.

We're grateful for your van too so you can drive out and visit!

Sandy said...

Great entry! Thanks:)

Jessica said...

Andrea, I'm going to do this!!!! I'm excited to start!

Kiersten said...

Great post!

Grandma Sweat said...

Andrea - What a sweet and uplifting post! You are so good to keep your gratitude journal and share your thoughts!
Love,
Grandma Sweat

The Normal Mormon Husband said...

I'm grateful for a wife who is grateful for fantasy football.